Friday, May 13, 2016

Happy 7th Birthday to my Lily

This year Lily had an extended birthday celebration for various reasons. Lily loved having '3 birthdays!'....and it was fun for us too! Lily's actual birthday was on April 16, so we made some cupcakes and brought them into school to share at break time. Phil even managed to come as well which was a nice surprise for Lily. The whole school sung Happy Birthday to a very shy/embarrassed Lily (whole school being only 18 kids!!) and she handed each classmate a cupcake to enjoy.

(Sidenote: Things were a bit dicey security wise in N'Djamena at this time with the presidential elections the following weekend so we decided to postpone her birthday party with friends until after the uncertainty died down as not many people wanted to be travelling around the city unnecessarily. Also a bunch of her girl friends had left the country just to be safe and weren't due back until a week or two after the elections were over.)

Lily's Birthday cupcakes 
In the meantime, we had a family birthday party (with some families on the MAF compound too) on Saturday where we played some games, ate her tiger cake (her request, and once again, Phil delivered!!) and opened some nice gifts. The adults sat around chatting, eating cake and drinking coffee or coke depending on how hot they were feeling at the time :) and the kids had a blast playing legos and play mobil together. Lily went to bed with a smile on her face and some great memories of her 7th birthday.

So, once Lily's friends arrived back in the country, we invited them to a day at the Hilton pool.....she invited 2 girls and of course Kaitlyn and Evie and Phil and I were there was a glorious day of sun, blue sky, HOT temperatures, 3 amazing pools and some scrumptious pizza eaten poolside. She had a great time and felt loved and special.
In keeping with tradition, here is a little letter to Lily highlighting some of the things that we want to remember about her...

Happy with her Tiger cake design
Oh Lilsky-doodle, you are a beautiful, smiley girl who is always up for any make-believe game involving you being some sort of animal. "Mom, I think I am more comfortable being an animal than a human"'....??? You spend more time on your hands and feet, galloping like a horse or running like a tiger or cheetah, then you do on your two feet! But you have a great ol' time down there! So fun to see your imagination create fun all day long!

You are a reading machine....I literally have to pry the book out of your hand so you can go to bed or eat your it! Funny thing is that when you read, you read outloud so there is a constant hum of noise coming from you when you are reading. We have gotten used to it by now, but it took a bit of time to be able to concentrate on what we were doing when you were reading out loud all the time! You are totally into Cam Jansen mysteries now as well as the Rainbow Fairy book series (thanks to your cousins for sending you those!).

Little Merilee was one of Lily's guests
You still sleep with your blankie and need water beside your bed every night, and you have to hug and kiss me on the lips....sometimes I turn my face for you to kiss my cheek, and then you say....why not on your lips mom? Then we give another goodnight kiss, this time on the lips. Creature of habit Lily is.

You pride yourself in being able to make scrambled eggs by yourself and one of your favorite things to do with me is cook/bake. With you being in school now, that doesn't happen as much as before, but you still get your chance on the weekends.

You lost your first tooth a while ago but haven't lost any your cute Chiclet teeth smile remains. We'll cherish those baby teeth as long as they last...

You have a hard time with disappointment and dashed expectations (don't we all?) and we are working on maintaining self-control when life (or mom and dad) throws you a curve ball. We've talked lots about it, after the tantrums and also in times of peace and I know you know its wrong and you have prayed about it and are really trying to put that kind of reaction far from you. It just takes time and prayer and effort. We love you no matter what Lil.

You have amazing servant heart moments where you'll close the kitchen door and scurry around getting all the dishes ready to set the table and then say " Mom, Don't look!!" while you set the table to surprise me. Or you'll fill the water glasses up for dinner, or tidy your bedroom up and surprise me. I love that in those moments, I see that you just 'get it'....putting others first and doing things for others that aren't necessarily fun for you, but you know it will bless someone else. Love it!

You are an animal lover (understatement!!) and have been blessed with 4 kitties, 2 cats, 2 bunnies, 1 turtle and a chance to hold an owl and a baby bird. No shortage of animals here for your to love and care for....each weekend, one of your jobs it to feed/water the pets.....I'd like to add change the kitty litter to that job description please! :)

You love to swim and be loud and crazy in the pool...."no screaming Lil!!".

Evie loves to play with you, be chased by you, jump on the trampoline with you and just be with you. Several times a day now Evie will ask "Where Lily?"....and I'll say that you are at school bu you are coming home after lunch and Evie will say "Oh" and be happy knowing you are coming back soon. Adorable.

I love how you will often get out of bed, early in the morning to get Evie out of her crib as she is awake and wanting some food. You lovingly take her out of her crib, get a little something for her to eat, play with her and give me a couple more minutes of sleep. I don't know if you realize how huge a thing that is to do for me Lily. Thank you.

You are doing amazingly well at school....Grade 1 seems to be a breeze for you. Your teacher thinks you're a hard worker and a bit of a perfectionist (Phil!) and there isn't much you encounter that you feel like you can't do. Wait to go Lily!! I remember how nervous you were to start school and how you didn't want to go, and here you are, doing great! So proud of you Lily for overcoming your fears and trying something new.

You are counting down the days (Literally) until we are flying back to Canada for the summer....and you keep on asking...."So, is Gramma, Nnana, Grampa, AND Emmy going to pick us up at the airport??". You want everyone there right away so you can see them all. You miss them a lot and I love how you feel so close to them despite the fact we are continents away from each other. That is a huge blessing. I pray that this summer will be so special for you, to reconnect with cousins and friends and discover a little more about Canada and where your from.

Lily, you are so special to our family and we love you so much. You bring joy, laughter, craziness, creativity, fun and love to our family. Happy's to many more....Love ya kiddo.