Sunday, December 8, 2013

Better Late Than Never: Atley's 1st Birthday (and Year)

(I say better late than never because I am actually putting this post up on March 8th, 2014, but for family history blog printing purposes, I'm logging this one in on December 8th!) 

It just seems like yesterday that our sweet baby Atley was born. Her gentle entry into the world has so far proven to be a sign of things to come with this little girl - she is such a sweet, gentle, calm and good-natured little baby. We love her so much and the calming, healing spirit she exudes and brings in our home.

Playing dress up with mom and mimi - just a couple days old.

Wanting to sleep instead of play dress up and photo-shoot.

Making poses reminiscent of her brother's.

A rare and beautiful gem of a photo - Lincoln and Atley, both smiling. :)

Having fun with Daddy.

Smiling at Mommy.

Isn't she just a doll?! Who wouldn't wake up swollen with pride, joy and warm fuzzies just looking at that little face?!

After church nap. Snuggling with dad. Love her chubby cheeks.

Getting stronger, doing baby push-ups.

Gorgeous baby girl - 4 months, 8 days old.

Atley loves to dress up - she has a knack for finding all of Lincoln's hats.

Look at those arm rolls and that tongue!! I LOVE THIS BABY GIRL!!!!

Showing off her rolling skills.

Quick photo with mom.

Happy hanging out with mom and dad before sleepy time.

Below is a photo of her first taste of solid food - rice cereal with mama's milk. She didn't quite know what to think. In fact, she really didn't like it. My older brother, Jeremy suggested this photo paired well with this classic "Rosie the Riveter" WWII ad. I couldn't agree more! It turns out Atley's first shaky experiences with solid food have been isolated incidents. This baby loves to eat. And she now feeds herself whatever we're eating at the table. She even uses a baby fork and spoon quite well, and can drink out of a cup with a small amount of liquid in it. She's a trooper, and a better, more consistent eater than her brother.

This little baby girl does the cutest little wrinkle in her nose deal. I'm pretty sure she gets it from Squire's dad. I absolutely adore it when she does it. Here she is just coming out of it.

Here you can see a tiny bit of that wrinkle - and her awesome thunder baby thighs as she laughs herself silly playing with the fan.

She wasn't too happy to be doing this photo shoot, but I just love this close-up of her face. This was done for a Father's Day gift. I think this girl is gorgeous. I love the shape of her mouth, and her pink lips and cheeks, and the fabulous rolls down her arms and wrists.

Here she is with just two baby teeth.

Playing with the oven mitt, being her regular cute and cheery little self.

Starting to pull to standing on her own.

Atley really enjoys music and isn't too shabby on the harmonica, either:

Atley really loved her first taste of homemade yogurt. In all her excitement, she decided to share some with her hair, cheeks, high chair, clothes, the blinds and floor.

And finally - this journey of photos has brought us to this point: December 7, 2013 - the day of Atley's first birthday. Sporting Lincoln's hat, she is pleased to open her first present - a bear shaker! Atley got a few different musical instruments for her first birthday - a shaker, a drum, and a slide whistle. She was very pleased. In keeping with tradition, we opened presents throughout the day.

Here she is opening one of her presents later that day with daddy.

Yay! A drum!

Atley also got her very own apron, sewn by Mama for her first birthday. I gave her a few choices of fabric before I started sewing. Cute taste, right? This girl knows what she likes! She makes sure to tell us when we are getting her dressed for bed or for the day. She loves having choices to make.

Here are a couple of close-ups on the cuteness of the teensy tiny baby apron. This little girl asks to wear her apron every time she sees me wearing mine. She's becoming a little homemaker like her mom already.

Where I excel in sewing skills, my cake skills suffer. No, people -this is NOT the after picture, this is the before picture of her first birthday cake! Haha! Yes, those raspberries are in the shape of a heart. I told you that both to inform you, and to keep a record of whatever I thought I was doing here. I'm pretty sure I wouldn't be able to decipher that in the future looking back on this little guy, without some explanation. ;) It tasted really yummy though! :)
While Atley is a great eater, she was a little more timid about her cake.
Dad had to give her some encouragement. She was using her blower to avoid having to do too much with the cake.


All done! Atley's cake was more of an exercise in demolition than a actual treat for her. She ate a couple of raspberries, and left the rest. Love this little sweetie's happy face.

The finished cake. Atley's birthday balloon.

Atley's birthday rose.

The obligatory first birthday bath.

 Our attempt at a family picture. Atley was not interested in doing that . . .

She wanted to look at the lights on the Christmas tree instead. See the painting of me as a little girl in the background?

I see that same sense of wonder in her eyes as I do in my stance in the painting. (I'll do a blog post about that painting some time in the future.) This little girl has a beautiful sense of wonder and love. I have absolutely loved being on this journey with her this last year. I keep thinking I couldn't love her any more than I already do, but then she looks up at me while nursing and smacks her lips at me to give her a kiss! She has stolen my heart, and brings us all immeasurable joy each day. We look forward to getting to see her beautiful little personality unfold for us even more in the years to come. 


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