Saturday, January 17, 2015


Birthday bike. 6:30am
I am thankful today.

When you have your first child, each day is new territory. There is no other child to compare your experiences to. You simply walk through each day, one step at a time, bumbling along, hoping that all of your loving, consoling, leading, worrying, kissing, sometimes yelling, teaching, feeding, hugging, holding and directing will work together for some good. And not fall flat on its face.

And then your first turns seven, and there's been enough years now that you can look back on them and see the growth and the changes, and you realize, "Hey, maybe we're doing okay."

Kaiya, you are our energetic, fun-loving cheerleader of a girl. As your teacher wrote this fall: "Kaiya is an extremely cheerful and happy person. She never fails to make the class and I laugh during the day." Yes, that is our girl. Your life is so full of joy. So evident in your day-to-day enthusiasm and in your love for all upbeat tunes. I love that you love Michael Jackson, and I love how you push the coffee table away each day so that you and Izzy can get your dance moves on. You've got rhythm, girl.

Your knock-knock jokes are a work in progress, but I will never forget the first time you truly "got" a joke. Do you remember? "What do you call a horse who lives beside you? Your neeeeighbour." The funny smile that came over your face as it all sunk in. I'll never forget it.

Your love for math and science is a wonder I can't always comprehend as you daily ask your dad, "Did you learn about any science today, dad?" And he leads you down a wonderful trail of magnificent stories of life and our planet. The two of you often get lost in dinnertime conversations and I see how your dad's love for and curiosity about life has been channeled right into you.

But this year we've also seen a new independence and a new quiet side as you fill your mornings with quiet play, waiting for the rest of the house to rise, and you finally let go of your resistance to reading, suddenly awing us with your knowledge of words and your interest in chapter books. There is a whole world just waiting to be discovered by you, my dear.

You also love hard on your sister, whether she wants it or not! You take good care of her and dote on her just like a mother would. And I know if she's outside, you'll see to it that she's safe. My heart melts when you two wrestle and giggle together after dinner, Izzy pulling you into a big bear hug or sitting on your back while you lie on the floor. So many times, the first word out of her mouth each morning is "Aiya." So much love for her big sister. You two make a good pair.

I am proud of you Kaiya, for all that you are, for all the loud, crazy personality bottled up inside this beautiful girl. Happy birthday to you.

Post-birthday party henna in the park, dragon in hand (of course!)

Wagamama's birthday dinner


Suzanne Veenstra said...

Happy birthday Kaiya Bear. It was so awesome to see you today and to join you in a mini dance party. I can't wait until we can dance together again. Love you Jade. Xoxoxo

Anonymous said...

I love my 7 years Kaiya and your new bike to. Kisses from your Babi (And Dedo)

Rose said...

Happy Birthday Kaiya! Sorry we missed connecting with you, but we will soon. We love you so much! Xo xo xo

Robyn said...

Thank goodness for posts on Facebook that lead me here. I completely missed this post. What a great read on the life of Kaiya.

It's wonderful to hear how you are growing up. How you now love to read and your questions about math and are learning so much. I love how you spend time in the morning just for you. What a great idea.
And from all the photo's I've seen, it is certain that you're a great big sister! Izzy certainly is lucky to have you. Happy Belated Birthday Kaiya! I hope it was a fun day and you know you are loved! :)
Oh, and I really like your bike. It looks like a huge bike, so great that you can ride that big thing! Way to go!