Tomorrow is Makaila’s 2nd birthday. So, naturally I’m looking through baby photos and crying my eyes out. Since this is my blog and I can do what I want, I’m going to flood this post with some of them. Bear with me.

Momma & Makaila



Sassy pants from the start. 172930_822198964636_5636214_o

Growing next to her bear. 228047_921768651186_4979903_n

Those eyes.


1st Halloween.


Baby girl at her 1st birthday party. (Photo by Quinn Neely)


Thug life.


Sweet shades.

Such a lady.


Out to the ball game.


Mmm… shrimp tempora.




Just like Momma.


Pigtails and Football.


Smiles with Poppa.


Playing in the kitchen.


I can’t remember what we did on my daughter’s 1st birthday. I CAN’T remember and it’s KILLING me. I hate even admitting that. Now I remember her party all and well, but I’m so sad and sorry that I don’t remember her first big special day. However I do remember NOT writing her a birthday card, thinking that she was too young, and a million other reasons as to why it wasn’t necessary. But that also makes me super sad that I didn’t capture that moment in time by writing it down. So here’s a little note to my daughter, Makaila. Hopefully the internet is still around when she’s old enough to appreciate it.

Makaila Isabel-

Happy Birthday, Precious Girl! Tomorrow you turn 2 years old. I can’t believe that so much time has passed since the Lord gave you to us. You are simply amazing, and you have changed me forever. I’m so proud of the little girl you are, and the person that you are becoming. I want you to know how brilliant, kind, passionate, and beautiful I think you are. And funny! You make me laugh every single day, and that is maybe the most rewarding thing ever. You have enough sass to fill a room, and everyone loves watching you sing and dance and tell your elaborate stories, even if sometimes we can’t understand exactly what you’re saying. But you are speaking in full sentences now, which is just astonishing to me. Not necessarily because you can speak so well for your age (which you can) but watching a child turn into a little person is an amazing thing. And hearing you talk has recently made me realize that I’ve spent everyday for the past 2 years with someone who didn’t speak english. Basically. So now hearing you communicate in a whole different way is revealing an even more enchanting person than I ever expected. You are absolutely captivating.

Your Poppa and I pray for you every single day. That we would be able to love you in exactly the way that Christ wants us to, and that He would bring you to know Him. Sweet girl, if there is anything that I want in this world, it is for you and your brother to know Jesus. I know that I am not at all perfect, and that I will inevitably let you down in this life, but I do hope that I can point you towards the Lord. You already talk about Jesus all the time, which absolutely warms our hearts <;3 Keep at it, my little love.

Tonight, on the eve of your birthday, I have so many feelings about tomorrow. On one hand I’m so excited for you to be growing and learning all about the world around you. There will be few greater joys than watching you turn into a woman. But on the other hand, I’m already missing you being so small. It wasn’t that long ago that you refused to fall asleep anywhere but my chest. Had I known that once that ended that it would be gone forever, I don’t know that I would have let it go. Now if I try to put you to sleep, you just want to play with my hair and talk my ear off. Like a true girl. No more baby days for you.

I cherish your vulnerability. Sometimes you are in the middle of playing, and stop to come give me a kiss. Often times when I discipline a bad behavior, you hold out your arms and cry for a hug. Your little heart loves reconciliation, and I hope to foster that in you. And you already have the sweetest little manners. It warms my heart when I do something so simple for you, and it is received with a big and unexpected “Ooohhh, thank you, Momma!” Spending each day with you is the most rewarding thing that I could ask for.

I hope that your Poppa and I are able to make your birthday feel extra special, because YOU are special. I love you deeply and dearly, and I am beyond blessed to be your mother. You are not just my daughter and my friend, but an extension of my own heart, walking around this world. I will do my very best to protect you, love you, and direct you through it, as long as I can.

Love you to the moon and back.