Five years ago today, we became a family of four. Little Lauren came into our lives, screaming and kicking. Looking back, we were in the middle of a tough period of our lives, and she definitely brought all 4 of us closer together than ever before. She’s the complete opposite of her sister Ally. Ally’s calm, Lauren’s feisty. Ally loves getting help, Lauren won’t even let us wipe her face. Ally is more reserved, while Lauren is definitely more outgoing. We always joke that Ally is my wife’s mini me, while Lauren’s my little clone. In the last 5 years, Lauren has grown to be a lovely little girl who will be starting kindergarten next year. She LOVES Hello Kitty, (I think obsessed might be more accurate), loves her apples, would rather eat vegetables than meat, and just learned sarcasm (god help us!!). I looked back at our old family blog, and found a letter I wrote to Lauren when she just turned one. A lot of the sentiments are still the same, so I decided to repost it again. Here it goes. Dear Lauren, 3 AM seems to be the magic time around here. This is usually when you get up since you were about 4 months old for your midnight feeding. And now you get up around 3 AM because you have been teething. This is going to sound weird, but 3 AM is actually my favorite time of the day. With all the chaos going on during the day, it really is hard for me to get a moment with you. At 3 in the morning I get to hold you, play with you, talk to you, and eventually rock you back to sleep. UNINTERRUPTED. I love the angelic look on your face when you fall asleep in my arms, wrapped in a big thick blanket, and totally content. Just like the day you were born. Don’t tell your mommy this, but sometimes I purposely keep you up just a little longer so I can spend a couple more minutes with you! Perhaps it is more than just spending some quality time with you, perhaps I am just trying to forever engrave the moment I laid my eyes on you for the first time. Has it been a year already?!? This year went by so fast it’s really hard to imagine you are now officially one year old! Before you were born, I often thought it would be impossible to share my love between your big sister and you. But ever since I first saw you, you have proven me wrong. I fell in love all over again when I held you for the first time. Somebody once told me that I will only learn what true love is when I stare into my own children’s eyes, and you’ve taught me how to love again with your innocence. You are growing up so fast and your mommy and I just want to cherish every moment. I love the way you wave at everybody that walks by in the mall, the way you wrinkle your nose, and how you squeals in excitement when I get home from work everyday. Even when you get up three, FOUR times a night because you are teething. These are all the moments we will look back on and know they are uniquely yours. You have brought so much joy to our lives that it’s hard to imagine what it was like without you. We love watching you play with Ally, even though sometimes she slams the door shut when she hears you crawling to her room! It is our sincere hope that you and Ally will be best friends for the rest of your lives, even long after we are gone. Please be patient with Ally as she’s learning the concept of ‘sharing.’ We all love you very much! We know that you will grow up one day to be a well-rounded person. Our only expection for you is for you to do as well as you possibly can. We will be with you every step of the way if you ever need our support. This is what I wrote for your sister when she turned 1, and I would like to share the same thoughts with you; I hope you will become a better person than me. It gives me no greater pleasure than for you to surpass me in what I accomplish in life. I hope you nothing but the most wonderful treasures life has to offer, and I hope you will be kind enough to share it with us. We will love you for as long as you shall live, even if we will have to leave you one day. In our eyes you will always be our “baby sister.” We hope you have a wonderful 1st birthday and many many more to come. Love, Daddy, Mommy & Ally Our first family of 4 Christmas card!
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