Dear Avalyn Grace
It seems like only last week that we were visiting you in the hospital, and seeing our first grandchild newly born, wrapped in a hospital blanket, with a plastic label round her tiny ankle.
Now, a year has almost passed by. No, I don't know where the time has gone, but then time is not a concept you are bothered about, is it? So much has changed in your little life since you left that maternity ward.
You've just cut your first tooth - ginger biscuits are finally becoming a possibility.
Now you can sit up and play with your toys. You like waving at people, or dogs, and paintings and christmas trees. You clap your hands whenever you're pleased about something. You've just cut your first tooth - ginger biscuits are finally becoming a possibility.
You are such fun. Everybody who meets you falls in love with you.
Your capacity for mischief is already emerging: last week you ripped up a whole kitchen roll your mum had left on the floor. A few days later, you managed to open a box of chocolates and help yourself to one. I think your parents are going to have to learn not to leave things lying around from now on!
You are such fun. Everybody who meets you falls in love with you. I see the 'Avalyn effect' every time we go out. Crotchety old men on buses melt and turn into candyfloss. People in restaurants fall captive under the power of your smile.
In a few weeks time it will be your first birthday. I know you will get loads of presents. There is going to be a party, a cake with a single candle. The family will gather to celebrate.
Proud Mum and Delightful Daughter!
But the best present of all is the one you have given us: the gift of yourself. The way your eyes light up whenever we come into your house. Your cheeky face. Your arms raised to be picked up and cuddled.
Soon, your mother will have to return to work. Then you will be coming over here to be looked after by me. We're going to try the old adage that: everything's better at Grandma's!
Welcome to your one year old world, my little girl.
The toys are all ready for you to play with. There will be swings to swing on, a rocking pony to ride on, and a naughty kitten to be your friend.
Welcome to your one year old world, my little girl. Step over the threshold and embrace all that life has in store for you.
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