Dearest Sweet Lowe,
I start this about 9 days before you actual birthday because Time plays tricks on me out here in the Country. I swear I blinked and you were still in my belly just yesterday.

I kid you not that, in my mind, I might still be pregnant with you. I cannot in any way, understand how it is possible that you are ONE! Perhaps because the details of this past year have been blurred with sleepless nights, the holidays, selling 2 houses, buying one, moving a state away and just the day-to-day life out here at The Right Turn Ranch. I just can’t seem to even look at you and really, honestly believe you have really spent a whole year with us.

We couldn’t love you more. That’s no secret. You are the happiest, brightest spot in each day. That crazy smile you do where you crinkle your nose and your 6 white teeth poke out at us is our EVERYTHING! If we didn’t have you to laugh at and lighten up our days, life sure wouldn’t be as fun. None of us can even remember what it was like before you were here.

*******it is now the night before your First Birthday and Mama is quite emotional. I keep tearing up at the thought that tomorrow you are ONE YEAR OLD! Don’t get me wrong, I’m so super glad you are big and healthy and growing (I hate even uttering the phrase ‘Never Grow Up…it seems so unfair when so many babies don’t), but it’s going too fast.

We spent the day at Daddy’s baseball game. You on the ground in front of the bleachers eating sunflower seed shells, rubbing your hands in the dirt and whacking the 9 balls in front of you with one of Reeve’s Dive Sticks. Needless to say, you were in heaven. Dirt & Balls seem to be your favorite! I can’t even begin to guess the number of times this past year I’ve heard myself say “eh, second kid….dirt won’t hurt him…let him eat a rock, he’ll be fine…he’s not the first kid who has tumbled off a chair.” I really can’t control you once you are on the floor! You are down there spinning in circles, Bear crawling, head butting things and trying to climb on any chair/table/bleacher/whatever is in front of you.

With sunscreen all over your face and your wild, course hair getting curlier as sweat covers you, I just have nothing to do but laugh at you. Brother too…he often walks up to me and says, “Lowe is so crazy!” and shakes his head like daddy and I do.

You just refuse to walk, but are the fastest dang crawler I’ve ever seen. Once you hit hardwood though, you are up on your feet and bear crawling then plopping into a sit, looking for me, crinkling your nose in a smile and then turning to jet off. I just really play Keep Up and Keep Away Scary Things from you. Anytime I try to get you to walk or put weight on your feet, you get pissed off and start throwing your head back. Whatever…you will walk when you want. I should note, however, that your brother was walking 2 months before his First Birthday and got new tennis shoes for his First Birthday. Ahem! You do like to pull up on almost anything and can walk the length of the couch while holding on.

You think it’s so funny to crawl on the futon in the loft and have only fallen off hard once.(yesterday…and when I said, “eh…second kid.”) Daddy panicked, but I watched you look for me, see me and then try it again! You like to be up on our Sectional in the Family Room and crawl from end-to-end resting only to relax and lay back on the pillows in the corner to watch the baseball/basketball game on the TV so you can yell “BAHHHHH…..BAHHHHH!!!!!” You went to your first KC Royals baseball game this month and had such a great time seeing all the BAHHHHHS!

And boy do you yell Ball….all day, every day! The minute we walk into the gym so mommy can workout each day, you start jumping out of my arms and yelling “BAHHHH” b/c there is always a basketball on the counter. You like to whack any ball and love throwing the ball to us for us to throw back to you so we can all clap for you and say, “yeah, Lowe….”

Almost as much as balls, you enjoy cups, lids and straws. Yep…you have rooms full of toys, but can sit and play with those three things for an hour!

You are definitely able to say “bubba” but it comes out more like “buhhhh.” Mama is MAAAAAAAA and sounds like a sheep and an old lady yelling at the same time. It’s always a demanding word and never endearing. You smack your lips for kisses are learning to nod your head Yes or No.

You have meaty thighs, a huge head and fuzzy hair with curls over your ears. You only want me most of the time and love to wave Bye Bye to daddy…but backwards. Oh, it’s my favorite when you start waving to yourself, really, when he walks away from you. The minutes I say “horses” you look for them and start panting…same with Hannah too (but I don’t know how you’d know that b/c all she really seems to do is eat and steal your crackers). You love to crawl into your bathroom and once I heard a loud THUD as you fell over the side into it. One day I caught you licking the plunger before I could get to you and you have never taken a bottle but I caught you trying to suck on the shampoo bottle.

You are inquisitive and love to explore and check everything out. Mostly this just means that you like to pull things off of shelves, open cabinets and like to pull EVERY SINGLE BOOK off of your shelf.

You are still napping twice a day and doing much better at night. I really don’t even want to talk about what that means as of last week for fear of jinxing it, but let’s just say Mama is happy and well-rested (for the moment). This month you’ve snuggled onto my shoulder quite a bit and have even let me sing to you. My favorite song to sing to you (and Bubba) is Stand By Me. I’ve let you start sleeping with a blanket and the first week or so you would wake up and hold it up for me to see. Almost like you were saying, “hey, mama, look what I found in here.” Each morning you still are standing in the corner of your crib waiting for me and just light up the second the door opens. I love it.

You still will eat pretty much anything we put before you (except bananas, avacado and pears). It always end up either on the floor, in your hair or in Hannah’s mouth). This would’ve bothered me with Reeve, but eh…second kid. Whatever. Eat it. Or don’t…whatever!

Brother is still your favorite (even though I like to think it’s me). No one can make you laugh like he can. He loves to hide in your closet and then I say, “where’s bubba?” and each time he pops out it’s like it’s the first time you’ve ever played that game. He sits in the backseat with you and sticks his tongue out at you to make you giggle. He can often be quite rough though and it drives me nuts. He’s always grabbing your wrist/leg and squeezing it. He gets so mad when you crawl into his room, but it’s really only b/c he’s worried you will eat a little Lego piece. I can’t begin to tell you the number of times a day I yell at him for slamming the door to his room too close to your little fingers. He spends a lot of time laughing at you also and sings “Reeve and Lowe, best of friends…til the end” to you.

Oh, Lowe…it’s 10pm now and I am heading to bed. Just knowing I will wake up with a 1-year-old is so bittersweet. Today I read the Story of your Birth aloud to daddy as we drove back from KC and just can’t believe it was a year ago you came to us.

We just love you so much, Lowe Chapel Lindan Mooneyham. We can’t wait until your big birthday barbecue this weekend with all of our family and friends. We will be excited to celebrate you and to share stories about you and I will relish each moment someone tries to hold you and you shyly turn your head and snuggle into me.

We are so thankful for your laugh, your smile, your curiosity and fiery little mind. We give thanks every day for your health and how big and strong you are.

As always, I’m so happy to be the Mama you chose. I don’t know what each year will bring for you in your life, but I always know that I will never forget the day you were born and how it felt to finally hear you scream and to see your sweet, grumpy face and head full of dark hair.

Many Happy Birthday Wishes…

Mommy & Daddy & Reeve LOVE LOVE LOVE YOU!Lowe One-1

Lowe One-1

Lowe 1-2 Lowe 1-3 Lowe 1-4 Lowe 1-5

Favorite things to do: Bear Crawling, BALLS, cups/straws/lids to play with, getting up onto the Futon, Clapping for yourself, relaxing on the couch pillows, throwing your bottle on the floors, banging on the window door in the family room, hitting the scale in our bathroom to make it light up, hitting the trash can sensor to make the lid open, eating rocks, dancing side-to-side

Favorite things to eat: ANYTHING!  you really like little bits of meat and LOVE cheese. We give you cow milk in a bottle and you love it.

 Dislikes: Still the carseat…and having your diaper changed is hard again. Being told no. When I leave the room. The pool has been open a week and you don’t love it yet. I understand it’s probably quite overwhelming and the water is still quite cold, but you just want me to hold/nurse you and to play with a styrofoam cup from the concession stand.
Scary items: Trying to get off the couch/futon. You don’t understand how to get down and so we always have to sit right next to you if you are up there. The stairs scare mommy and you’ve only tried to crawl up then 2 or 3 times and have only made it up 2 or 3 stairs before we scoop you up. Not yet…maybe next month we will work on that.
Cute item: Reeve has this ball that has this thing you pull on it to launch it across the room that you love. You don’t understand it, but pull the little string then throw it and think you are amazing. BALLS of course.
Hair color: Blonder every day now that the pool is open and we are out in the sun a lot. It’s curly when it’s sweaty and very course. The hair over your ears seems to grow really fast and is really the only part we’ve trimmed.
Eye color: Still bright blue! I often have strangers comment on your eyes.
Clothing size: 12-18 month
Diaper size: 4 (may need to move up a size soon)
Weight: This is so funny b/c we’ve always called you Beef b/c we thought you were short and chunky, but at your 1-year Checkup weighed in at 21 pounds which was in the 32% (meaning you are not at all Beefy) and…were
Height: 31″ tall meaning you are in the 90% and quite tall.
Teeth: 6 (4 top, 2 bottom)…and working on two more bottom ones as we speak. You are boogery and crusty and quite fussy!

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