Monday, June 15, 2009

Happy Birthday, Julian!

From this...

To This...One Year Old!

Dear Julian,

One year ago today, you surprised us all! You were 10 weeks early and we had no idea you were ready yet! Grandpa drove Mommy to the hospital in a big hurry and Grandma came as soon as she learned that you were really ready to come out. She thought Mommy just needed to get some rest, but the doctors kept Mommy in the hospital and put her on some medicine to try and slow down your arrival, to give your lungs more time to develop. We prayed and prayed, for you and Mama to be okay.

After a long and scary day in the hospital, with Mommy screaming bloody murder, the doctors finally decided that you were more stubborn than they were, and they took you out lickety split! We all thought you were going to be a girl, but you were A BOY!! We were very happy to hear that you were a boy, but we were even more happy to hear that you were HEALTHY! You were only on the ventilator for a few hours. Your lungs were already developed! You still had to stay in the hospital for 6 weeks, until you could eat by yourself and maintain your own body temperature. You learned these things quickly, and I don’t think you’ve missed a meal since you were born!

We didn’t like that you had to stay in the hospital, but we visited you every day and the nurses were real nice to you. They said that you were their favorite and they gave you lots of hugs and kisses. They told us how they could hear your burps from across the room. They also told us that you were “not a wimpy white boy” and that you were very strong. Grandpa nicknamed you Spartacus “because Spartacus always wins.” Grandpa knew that you would overcome every obstacle that came your way. And you did. Grandma called you Sparky and Sparkles, because she thought you were too cute to be called Spartacus. While you were there, many babies came and went. When it was time for you to leave the hospital, some of the nurses cried. We cried too because we knew you were like family to them. But we were happy to have you home!

In one year, you have gone from 3.5 pounds to over 25 pounds and from 16.5 inches to over 28 inches tall. Grandma and Grandpa said you were like a little perch when you were born. Now, you are like a beautiful salmon! Your head was the size of a peach and now it’s the size of a small honeydew! And you have 6 (SIX!) teeth. You bite (hard!) when we brush your teeth with our finger. You also pinch and spit on us, but we know it’s all in good fun. Really, we do.

Today, you can sit up by yourself, roll across the room, crawl commando style across the floor to get to your favorite toys, especially BEADS! You love your plush pony, your “jumping jack”, your Baby Einstein movies, your books, your play house and all your noisy toys. You babble constantly, saying things like mamamamamamama, dadadadadadada, and baybaybaybaybaybay. You like it when we pretend to know what you are saying, then you repeat yourself, with a smile.

You mimic us when we clap, and then you giggle. You are a very good natured, happy baby and we are so thankful for that! The thing that makes you giggle the most is Grandpa’s beard. That, and Grandpa singing. You pull on his beard, throw back your head and giggle big belly laughs. You eat all kinds of fruits and vegetables now, but you don’t like meat. We hope you’re not going to be a vegetarian! You still gag on solid food like pieces of banana. We’re sorry that you can’t enjoy a big piece of your first birthday cake!

You sleep on your stomach now, because you are such a pro at rolling over, even though the doctors say to sleep on your back. You sleep on your stomach, with your nose pushed in the corner of your crib and your butt up in the air. We’re not sure what’s up with that, but it makes you happy and you cry if we try to roll you to your back.

You love people and you make everybody smile. When you giggle, you light up the room. When we go shopping, all the ladies point and smile, and tell you how cute you are. Recently, you’ve started screaming. You scream for no reason at all, just to hear yourself scream. We think you are trying to sing like Grandpa. We hope that you stop screaming soon.

When you are sleeping peacefully, our hearts rest with you. You have grown so fast and you have touched our hearts in a big, BIG way. We have big dreams for you, like growing up to be a fireman who rescues people in danger, but you will have your own dreams. And we know God has a plan for you. May God continue to bless you in every way, just as He has blessed Grandma and Grandpa. Happy 1st Birthday, June Bug!! We love you so very much!

Love,
Grandma and Grandpa

Here's a few more pictures...look at how much you look like Mommy and Grandpa!

Mommy, when she was also one year old

Grandpa, when he was just a few years old

Mommy...

... and Julian!

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