Happy Birthday, Vivienne Kate >>3 years old

1/24/2014 12:08:00 AM
Photo by Sarah Richardson Photography

Dear WeeVee,

It seems like just yesterday that you made us four.

That first moment I held you I was in love. I remember trying to place you... I think this is what we do with our second babies. We try to determine if you look like your older sister, your Daddy, me...

...but I learned very quickly that you were you and that you were like no one else. Completely and uniquely you.

You're so cool.

From the beginning... you made us smile.

It's incredible how much you've grown in the past year.

For starters, you have hair.

You tell me it's "just like my Daddy's." (This means, it's short.)

Your baby face has slowly gone and acknowledging this makes my heart shudder a bit... You'll understand that when you're a Mommy. We'll talk then.

You still love cake... a lot. And you're not overwhelmingly crazy about most foods.

Sometimes when I look at you I feel like I'm looking at a picture of myself from 1982 and it makes me smile knowing that your Nana was able to look at you, sigh and smile and for a moment remember what it was like to have a toddler... a toddler who looked like her baby.

And one day, you'll grow up and I'll smile at your child, my grandbaby and I'll remember this smile.

And that will keep me warm.

Now that you're 3, you're pretty much over naps. You take them here and there but you're transitioning from nap time to rest time.

You're down with it. You don't need a ton of sleep... you need more time to play with your minions, your  babies and your copious amounts of bags that you load with the most random of objects.

If we can't find something, we should truly just look in one of your bags.

Be sill my heart. Look at those eyes.

They're the same as your favorite color: brown.

You're a three-year-old girl whose favorite color is brown.


A couple of months ago we went shopping and your sister picked out pink sparkly shoes; you choose brown ones.


And those curls.

Just-woke-up-Vivi is one of the sweetest Vivi's there is.

So is "Looking-for-elephants" Vivi.

You, my sweet girl, would race to the railing in the morning and look for elephants in our yard with your big sister.

"Look! I see one!"

You see that bucket? That was your "chup" (pronounced "choop") bucket. It held your "chupones", your pacifiers.

You adored these things and you slept with one in your mouth, one in your hand and several by your feet under your covers until I took them away this past year.

It was time. You struggled.

You loved your chups. But you selflessly "gave them away" to our friend's baby, Baby Sara.

Those eyelashes.

You're choyera.

This past year you started to really enjoy the baking of cookies.

Or, shall I say, the wearing of flour and eating of icing and batter-of-all-types.

Oh sweet girl...

Vivienne, I look at you and I smile as I see these pictures because the love that I feel for you, I could never express properly in words.

In fact, right now, I want to go into your room where you are fast asleep and kiss that little nose.

You're a goofball.

You're independent.

You're a ham.

And you're a face-maker.

You're a talker and a lover of pretty things.

Nothing makes me smile more than when you tell me that something is "beautiful" or "lovely."

"Mommy, this bath is lovely."


So you've grown out of this shirt... and Elmo.

But you're starting to yell at your Daddy less.

Well, sort of.

At least during the day.

At night when you need some help you're no longer throwing your body against the door with your arms outstretched against it screaming, "NO!!! NOT YOU! I WANT MY MOMMY."

In fact, you let him help you.

You think he's incredible and when he's not with us, you cry for him.

It's because he's incomparable and he loves you so, so, so much and you know it.

Look at your face...

It's common to hear you say, "This is bwoken. I give it to my Daddy. My Daddy fixes all the things."

It's true. He'll fix all the things for you forever.

Mark my words.

Speaking of forever, there's this relationship.

Vivienne. You love her. And she loves you. And sometimes I think the best thing that I ever did was have you two as closely as I did.

She takes care of you, and you don't let her.

"No, Lila! I've got this. NO!"

But then there are the moments when you let go and you let her take care of you.

When you need her.

You'll do this forever, I pray.

You two are growing up with separate realities, of course -- but you'll have a shared experience that will bond you tighter than [gorilla] glue.

She gets you.

She's your advocate.

Your hers.


You will grow up and dress strangely and I will continue to take your photos together and then in about 20 years we'll all sit around the table late into the night laughing...

...and you will of course blame me for the strange outfits.

But I can't be blamed for these.

You all did this.

Yeah, I don't know what happened here.

The other day after I made you and your sister play in two separate rooms (because you were arguing and fighting INCESSANTLY), Lila cried and said, "But... Mommy... it's so hard for us to be apart."

It's true.

You two just work together. Peanut butter and jelly. Usually. Except Lila doesn't like jelly and you do.

You get the placemats. She gets the spoons.
She likes pink. You like purple.
She wants the princess cup. You ask for the Mickey cup.

But it's not all unicorns and skittles - Lila always touches you and you always yell at her. Or, at breakfast you make her laugh continuously and she gets in trouble for not eating.

One of your favorite games to play with Lila is "Mommy and Baby." You take turns. And it's sweet.

I think that you've brought your sister out of her shell.

You're two peas in a silly, laughing, LOUD, pod.

And you're a team.

Which is the goal.

Sweet Vivienne Kate,

You are a joy.

You are drama.

 You are brave.

You are funny.

You are impeccably self-styled.

You are introspective...

You wear your emotions on your face.

You're so expressive.

And I can never take jus tone photo of you because with 5 seconds you make 10 different faces.

(Which I love.)

You love your baby dolls and your dogs.

And owls. Oh the owls. Oh you love the owls.

You don't love the time outs.

But you like to lounge.

And again... always the faces.

Sweet Vivienne,

You are the sweetest little thing. 
It's my pleasure to be your Mommy
I love the way you love.
Your constant hugs. The, "I love you, Mommy" 20 times a day.
The "God bless you" when anyone sneezes.
The, "Are you ok, Lila?" as soon as she falls.
The, "Do you need help Daddy?" 
The feeding of the dogs.
The rocking of your babies.
The one... more... hug... always the one more hug...

You are helpful and sweet and kind and I'm already proud of the person you are becoming. I simply cannot wait to watch you grow. 

You're a gift to my life and my heart.

Vivi Cakes, you are enough just as you are.

And you are so loved.

Photo by Sarah Richardson Photography

I love you to the moon and back a gazillion times and there is no one happier that you were born than me.

Happy Birthday, baby girl.

Your Mommy.

Her last day of being 2. 

more about the vivienne kate
• • • • •
Pictures from Vivi's first year -- just a few -- click here to see
When I announced my pregnancy -- click to read here
Vivienne's birth story -- click to read here
Vivienne's birth announcement here -- click to see it
My post to Vivienne on her 1st birthday -- click to read it
Pics from Vivienne's first cake experience -- click to view
Vivienne's first birthday party -- click to see
My post to Vivienne on her 2nd birthday -- click to read it
The pics from Vivi's 2nd birthday party -- click to read it



  1. So incredibly sweet! Thank you for sharing, someday she will look back and be so touched by these posts! Happy birthday Vivi!

  2. I just LOVE this... Happy Happy 3rd to Miss Vivi... What a beautiful display of love and images... Priceless. xo

  3. Oh, I love this post SO much! I smiled the entire way through it. Your words and the photos are amazing!

    Happy Birthday to the sweet and silly Vivi!!

    I can't believe how much she has changed in the past year! Crazy. She is just so adorable and looks like SO MUCH fun! I love her spirit and silliness and that she dances to the beat of her own drum. Truly AWESOME.

    Hope she has a wonderful birthday!!

    (The picture where she is dancing by her blocks...the 4th one. Uh, 100% YOU. Fantastic.)


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