Eileen is one.
My daughter: A climber, interested in anything just out of reach – exploring boundaries.
Her ears find a rhythm and her tiny body moves, hair swirl bobbing to the beat.
She won’t smile just because you ask her to, but those belly laughs are real when they’re earned.
She has an appetite for life — and cheese sticks. Both fists filled with anything delicious.
Her forehead pressed firmly against yours, a silent gesture of solidarity. I am yours and you are mine.
I really can’t believe this was happening just one year ago.
Truly, it’s been magical.
We celebrated Eileen’s first birthday with a family day at The Playground in Ankeny, this spot tucked into a strip mall across from Waterfront restaurant that has an indoor climbing jungle gym and a bunch of bounce houses. Eileen climbed all the way to the top of the treehouse and loved the little disco room, but it’s probably best for kids 3-6. (There was a family there on their way driving from Colorado to northern Michigan – what a genius move for that mom to plan on giving her kiddos a leg stretch at a fun place like that!) They also serve Bosco sticks — a cheese-filled breadstick served with marinara dipping sauce that I ate copious amounts of freshman year of college.