Olan, My Sweet 4-Year-Old Boy

My dear Olie-o,

Oh sweet baby boy, I love you so much. You have been the source of so much joy in our family the last four years. You are my favorite little boy in the whole wide world! The sweet phase has not left. You’re just a bigger sweetie this year!

This year has been full of moments of growth for you. You are able to tell us exactly how you’re feeling and what you think, and I love it. The thoughts inside your head are finally becoming known to the world! You have grown tremendously in courage this year too. You have the ability to play on your own without being scared, you have become less shy around others, you don’t cower as much around animals. I know God has given you the courage to face your fears more and more. So glad to see Him working in you!

I’ve seen you grow in your love for reading, the water, dinosaurs, construction, flight, farming, and doing things on your own. Your sense of humor is incredibly cute, and folks just can’t resist your cheeks. Your personality is really starting to shine through, and the gifts that God has given you are taking form. Use your gifts to show love to others. That’s our purpose in this life – to love God and love others. Strive to do both well! I know God will be near to you in your pursuit. Thankful to be part of your journey, Olie.

My prayer for you this year is that God will continue to give you a sweet spirit about you, and that your knowledge of Him will lead you to a place of trusting Him with your life. I know He will use you in big ways as you grow up seeking after the Lord!

I am so excited to watch you grow this year. It’s truly a blessing to be your mama. You are such a gift!

I looooooove you, bubbaloo! Happy birthday!

Love,

Mama

To My Seven-Year-Old Evie

Hi little lady!

Another birthday has arrived: number seven! I have had so much fun with you as a six-year-old. The years just keep getting more fun! I have loved to watch you try out the school thing and you rocked it despite the many challenges you have faced. You have grown up in many ways, right before our very eyes.

Aside from being several inches taller, I have seen you transform into a more compassionate, thoughtful, and loving person this year. You care about others and I can see that in your interactions with our family. When Olan needs help, you’re there. I treasure the times when I’m laying in bed before your clock says 7:00am and I hear you helping him get a toy, read a book, or get dressed. The day I told you I finished my last homework assignment for my classes you melted my heart when you look at me and said, “Mom, I’m so proud of you.” The sympathy in your heart you felt for Jigglypuff when you learned that he was the weakest Super Smash Brothers character. The mornings you get up and make my cereal bowl with extra milk and cautiously bring it to my bedside. The surprise bathroom sink cleanings you’ve done countless times. The way you look after animals of all sorts. The times we leave grandma and grandpa’s house and you say with concern, “I’m really gonna miss them.” For these traits I have prayed!

Speaking of answered prayers, this was the year you decided you’d follow Jesus. My mom heart leaps for joy to share in the riches of our awesome God with you! He is slowly and surely changing you to be more like him. If I have any advice for you this year, it would be to make it a thing to read your Bible each day. You are already hiding the Word in your heart, but make it something you just do everyday.

You have the makings of an engineer. No kidding! Instead of bunches of toys, put some tape, scissors, string and paper in your hands and you’re set for the day! It is a delight for me to watch you try and figure things out. You’re much like your daddy in this area. I love that about you!

You are a reader today, and you’ll be a leader in the future! The way you devour books is rare, but I keep thinking about how your brain must be growing by the truckloads every day. Keep going on reading adventures beyond these four walls. Then tell me all about it!

This year, I am praying for you to learn to be humble and find ways to put others before yourself. It may be true that you are very talented in a lot of ways, but let others discover that by the way you act, not in the words you say. God has given you many gifts, and I thank him for that! I pray you can use those gifts to make God look good!

Girl, I can’t tell you enough how much I love you! I am so glad God gave me another year with you. You help make our family something special and I am SO excited to see how you grow in year number seven!

Muah!
Mom-ma

To Our Sweet Olan

Hi Sweet Bro!

It’s your turn to celebrate turning three! And what a year we’ve had to cherish you. You may find this letter has the word “sweet” many times throughout it. If I could choose one word or theme from your stage in life right now, it would be sweet. You have the sweetest spirit about you, and I truly count it a delight to be chosen as your mom. As much as you have grown physically this year, I still find myself calling you our baby bro. You might be big, but you are still snuggly, smoochy, and sweeter than syrup.

I’ll be the first to say that you are polite beyond what we’ve taught. Words like please, thank you, excuse me, you’re welcome, and I’m sorry all come very naturally to you. I am hoping this baby trait will be morphed into chivalrous character as you grow into a man. God has big plans for you, I can already see that through the unique personality he’s gifted you with. Gentle, kind, loving. You are different than many, if not most. I’m praying that God has set you apart for a task that uses your gifts in a rich and full way, both now and in the future.

You might be sweet, but you are also all boy. There’s no doubt that your manliness is innate. Throwing balls, swinging bats, being strong, running wild, iron crossing, playing cars, loving big machines, being a hero… You didn’t need much guidance to be in love with all these things. I am impressed that you’ve got sweet and tough down pretty well.

With all of that to say, with age comes fear. I’ve already witnessed some of that in you: fear of being left alone, fear of being hurt, fear of sounds. Something I want you to remember is that in the midst of your fear, God is ever-near. You can be brave because he is fighting on your behalf. I am praying that in fearful moments, that you would feel the presence of the Lord with you. This year marks a time in your life that you haven’t yet experienced. This year, you’ve begun to function without the surveillance and  protection of your big sister for the first time in your life as she goes on to conquer the world in kindergarten each day. But I am asking God to hold you up. It has already been a year of intense change for us all (you can bet that it may be scary at times), but with change comes growth. I look forward to watching God make you strong in your weakness.

Oh, Olan. I just love you so much. I could smooch and squeeze your cheeks all day. And ya know, I might just do that, because I know soon you’ll be four, then five, then twelve, and you won’t let me squeeze your cheeks anymore. You won’t have those jiggly puffs forever. You won’t have that soft squeaky voice for many more years. You won’t call out, “Momma!” each morning to get you out of your crib for too terribly much longer. You won’t invite me to play cars with you every waking second of every single day. You won’t need me quite like you need me right now. Watching you grow up is so fun, and so bittersweet.

I am just soaking and savoring you as you are: my sweet three-year-old baby boy. I can’t get enough!

Happy third birthday, bubbaloo.

Love,

Momma

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