We asked you what kind of cake you wanted. You told us, nearly without hesitation, "a park cake, with a bench and a tree and a sun". There was no hemming and hawing, no indecision. I was surprised. Weeks previously, when I asked what presents you wanted, you requested "American Girl Doll stuff" and that was really all you wanted; content with your lot and happy to just be. You don't shout out what you want and because of that, sometimes I get surprised when you have such specific desires. But I suppose I shouldn't be surprised. You know your mind, you just don't feel like everyone has to know all the time what's going on in there.
You are definitely "the quiet one". Daddy and I have to remember to draw you out and encourage you to share, especially during our dinner-talk-about-your-day sessions. But once you get started you do a great job sharing what's going on with you. You still have a bit of a tendency to get lost in the middle of your stories, though I think that is fading a bit. It can be a bit funny the way you stop talking and go somewhere else in the middle of a sentence.
However quiet you sometimes are, in this house everything is relative. You have a wild and crazy, infectious, high pitched giggle that once begun is hard to stifle. And you love to use it. You often start wrestling games with your brother, just so that he tickles you. There's hardly a game you like better than being chased wildly throughout the house, shrieking as you go.
You have come in to your own in your relationships with your siblings. You have gotten much more vocal about your ideas for games and how you want to implement them. If you don't like how PrincessE is bossing, then you take yourself and play a different game. You feel confident about inventing your own imaginary games and making them your own. It has been a magical transformation to watch. You also feel quite free to play with anyone else. Some days you and The Boy-child are best of friends; all wrestling and chasing. Other days you and Noodle make an involved imaginary game of teachers, ballet, babies or mommies. Your relationship with Noodle has blossomed since we came home from Israel. You two will play for hours with one another and there are rarely any problems. You are creative and love to be in charge of whatever game is currently going on. I love watching you take control. It's good for you.
There is a reason that your name begins with "T", I'm pretty sure it's karma. You have grown into even more of a mischievous child. It's not usually serious, but you have a definite streak of troublemaker in you. You look out of the side of your eyes to see if anyone is looking and then you begin, checking often to see if someone is going to tell you to stop. If something is entertaining, it's almost certainly more fun if you are wilder. But you don't want too much of a reaction. The other day I completely lost my temper with The Boy-child and you began crying too, even though you weren't involved at.all. (Apparently my loud yell frightened you badly.) Again, everything is relative and your trouble is small, doesn't happen very often. And you are cute.
You have gotten involved in organized football and seem to be enjoying it, though you have already decisively said you don't want to follow in The Boy-child's footsteps and be the goalie. You are loving swimming and you have made great strides. You now proudly dunk your head underwater to show us all how you can do it. You still have a tendency to panic, usually when you are in the middle of a lap and get tired, but your confidence is growing and you are doing great. You are also still loving piano and not only do you learn to play your songs, but you also love to sing along. It's lovely singing, too.
In some ways, you are still very much attached to me. I am always the one you prefer to hold hands with and the one you prefer to take you to parties and practice and anywhere we can be together, really. The other day I needed to take Noodle shopping and I offered that you could come along. You signed up right away, but when the plan changed and Dadam was going to be the one going, you decided not to go. It wasn't out you wanted, it was Mommy. But that attachment hasn't gotten in the way of school or activities. You don't cry when I leave you at school, you know that I'll be back. You *know* that we Love You.
I can't wait to see what the next year brings. You are blossoming with your academics, just these last few weeks we've seen a change in your ability to focus and get the job done when it comes to homework. And you are blossoming in your ability to relate to the world on your terms. You are so different from PrincessE and The Boy-Child; sometimes I fear I'm not doing right by you and who you are. I'll keep bumbling along, if you keep holding my hand.
Happy Birthday, my Blue-Eyed Princess Lu. I love you!