Monday, September 13, 2010

Raia is 3!! How did this happen so fast?

My baby girl had a birthday over the weekend. Three years old. Where has the time gone? It seems like just yesterday that she was born, and the 8 days she spent in NICU are still fresh on my mind. I am so lucky, WE are so lucky to have her!!!

This was just after they brought her to my room, right before they whisked her back to NICU. I don't have a lot of pictures from that time because the computer that they were on CRASHED :(

In NICU, the first day (?) she was breathing without help. She had her 2 kitties watching over her, and she still has them.

The day we brought her home. She still had jaundice pretty bad, but look how beautiful :)

My FAVORITE picture - my little rocker chic! I think she was 3 or 4 months old, but I included it because it is cute :)

We celebrated her birthday by going to the zoo, just the 3 of us. A few months ago we had talked about taking her to Sea World, but WHEW! Tickets are a bit pricey, and she wouldn't even enjoy half the stuff there. The zoo is very close to the hospital where she was in the NICU, so of course, seeing it was bittersweet (not sure if "bittersweet"" is the word I am looking for, but seeing the hospital made me feel very lucky all over again).

When we got to the zoo, we rode the train through the surrounding park. Raia wasn't too sure at first, she kept trying to hide under my arm, silly girl. The guy kept blowing the train whistle, and it was loud, and in my opinion, obnoxious. Once the guy quit blowing the high pitched train whistle, my baby girl was finally able to look around a bit. She would wave at the families in the park having picnics, or at joggers passing by - so sweet :)

Here are several more pictures of our sassy little 3 year old at the zoo. I took over 200 pictures there, so it was hard to select only a few!

The albino alligator in the reptile house is always in the same spot! Sometimes I wonder if he's real...

After the zoo, we were all exhausted and Raia was especially cranky. After we ate dinner, I got her little cake out of the refrigerator, and she perked right up!

I couldn't decide what kind of cake to make for her. She loves Miss Spider's Sunny Patch Friends, and Hello Kitty. I made the Hello Kitty one because I remember growing up loving her too! Raia LOVED the cake!! It was strawberry (pink), so it matched the decoration perfectly!

After cake, it was time to play with her new tricycle :) Can't wait to get that baby outdoors!

We had a really nice birthday, just the 3 of us. I hope she enjoyed it, as well. As I said earlier, we are so lucky, so very blessed to have Raia. I always call her "My little Raia sunshine!", and she really is :)

Now that she is three, she is doing so many wonderful (and not so wonderful) things! She is so smart...I get comments from people all the time about how well she talks, and those people are always surprised by her age. They expect her to be older, I guess. Sometimes I feel like there is a teenager living in her tiny body! She is so sassy, don't be fooled by her cuteness! She can be such a sweet cuddler when she wants to. At night, we have a routine: brush teeth, read two books, then I pick her up and let her turn the light off, and then she turns the TV off (yes, I'm one of those Moms who has the TV on all the time!), and then we get in the recliner and she says her little prayer - "Dear God, Thank you for this day. Thank you for Daddy and Gibson. Amen." (sometimes the prayer varies depending on the events of the day, but that is her standard prayer now LOL!) and then she snuggles up close to me as I pray out loud, and within minutes, she is sound asleep in my arms. That is my favorite time of the day! I then take her to her bed, and she stays there for 5 or 6 hours, then jumps over to my bed. What am I going to do when she grows out of this? I love our time in the evening, and then snuggling during the night. I am enjoying this time so much, trying not to think about her growing up so fast.

One last thing, Raia is this close to being potty trained! We have been doing the reward system with a chart and stickers. She gets one to put on her chart right by the potty, and then she gets another one just for her, and the one she gets to keep doesn't usually last more than about 5 minutes before it is torn up, wadded up, or chewed up...whatever! She does pretty good about telling me when she needs to go, usually 5 or 6 times a day. I am not brave enough to let her go sans diaper yet. Soon....

Until next time, whenever that may be...