I'm happy to say that I have savored your babyhood.
I have taken the time to relish your laugh, your baby white-blonde curls, and your tiny, high-pitched voice (3-year-old voices really are THE BEST).
I have held you during naptimes and let you sleep beside me in bed at night.
As you always say, we really are "best buddies" (along with your big sisters and daddy, of course).
This Little Light of Mine is probably your favorite song and you throw back your head and laugh whenever the hidden light pops out from under the bush. There's no hiding away YOUR light (that much is certain).
You also request nursery rhymes with regularity - Humpty Dumpty, "the cow jumping over the moon," and "the counting house."
People often comment about your personality because you are utterly charming - and not just because of your doll-like beauty. You have that bewitching kind of beauty that comes from deep-seated happiness. You love life and want to experience all the wonders around you.
Sometimes, it seems to me, that you are destined to be a peacemaker. You begin every prayer, unprompted, with "help us not to fight." I agree right with you, softened by your request. May we be a family where peace triumphs.
You have a particular fondness for going on walks, swinging and sliding at playgrounds, taking care of your baby dolls, and playing games that involve a great deal of imagination. You often insist that we call you Carrie (of Little House on the Prairie fame) because you enjoy that role so much.
You are happiest, however, with a stack of books by your side. You can read for long spans of time, speaking with surprising comprehension and dramatic effect. Your rapturousness in reading is truly a sight to behold.
You also enjoy performing - dancing on tip-toes, singing with your arms outstretched.
As far as mealtimes go, you have always been my best and least picky eater. You will try most anything and clear your plate contentedly much of the time. When you say please or thank you, you almost always fall into a curtsy. Utterly irresistible.
For a long time now, you've insisted on the (true) fact that you are not a baby. You show us the length of your legs each morning with pride and distinct pleasure. Even so, you still say "carry me" and "can you pick me up, please?" quite often. I happily oblige because I know these years pass by in a blink. In fact, you're asleep on my shoulder at this very instant, your sweet breath keeping time with my own. You rarely nap these days, but today you crawled into my lap and closed your eyes.
We cherish and adore you more than words could every say. Happy 3rd Birthday.