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Happy 3rd Birthday, Adeline & Maralee.

Y'all are our girls, and we love you so. Being three, you aren't a baby anymore but you aren't quite ready to get out of my arms either. I love holding you when you wake up in the morning. Daddy doesn't mind rocking you during the middle of the night either. The two of you won't be young forever, so we will hold you tight for a little while longer.

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This past year, the two of you have stretched me as a mom.  Some days, I thought you might stretch me too far, but with God's grace, I never broke.  Not completely, anyway.  Sure, there were breaking points but with a little bit of love and laughter, we got back to our starting point.

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We moved this year. You girls kept me going last summer when we were in Dothan and Daddy was in Montgomery.  Us girls were traveling companions. Thank you for making the drive easy.

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Your grandparents have been a huge help to us this past year.  From Ganny and Pappy allowing us to live with them and for Gabby and Pops always saying yes to sleep overs so Dad and I could have a date, they've been blessings in disguise.  You girls are loved by many.

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I know you've missed your Montgomery girls.  I can't blame you because I've missed them too.  One might say you are too young for real friendship but I don't believe that is so.  Your Montgomery girls are your first friends and we've done our best to keep those friendships close even though we are far away.

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However, Dothan has delighted us with new friends.  You two have transitioned so easy into a new class, gymnastics, and church. It's going to be funny to look back at the pictures from this birthday when you all are in high school. You will see who has stayed in your life and who has changed. Some friendships are for a season and others are for a lifetime.  Mom and Dad are praying that your friends will mold you, teach you, and love you. You were certainly loved this past weekend at your party!

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Speaking of parties, you had to have one this year.  I thought I could get away with a little family vacation but no - you wanted a par-tee. Sweet baby girls, y'all love you some ice cream. I hope you had fun and remember your birthday party in the years to come.

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Adeline, I hope I get to show this picture to your husband one day.  May he be as patient and easy-going as your father is :)

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Maralee, I hope you remember that life is full of imagination.  You can always be the princess pirate, little mermaid, and wear your tap-tap shoes :)

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This year, you each requested a birthday cake. Maralee: chocolate heart shaped cake. At the last minute you asked for a pony but I couldn't pull that one off.  I think you liked it anyway:

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Adeline, you specifically asked for an ice cream cake to go with your ice cream party.  Mama accidentally let it thaw out a little too long but I don't think you minded. Girl, you love ice cream just as much as your daddy.

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As I watched the two of you light up over your cakes, I celebrated your unique personalities.  You might be twins, but you are not one person.

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Adeline, you are fiercely kind and independent.  You love dogs. I'm amazed at your artistry and am so proud of you for potty-training.  You are determined yet gentle when you want to be. You've been everything that a two year old can be and you continually teach us to be fruitful parents.

Maralee, you relish in being the baby.  I adore your big blue eyes and joyful smile. You are a great doctor and have awesome spin moves. Just like your daddy, you make me laugh. Thank you for being easy going (most of the time). :) One day, we will get you potty-trained and get your spoon out of the Nutella jar and into some real food. I look forward to watching you shine, sweet girl.

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Your father and I don't know how we got two such beautiful little girls.  Children are a blessing from the Lord but he has truly blessed us with the two of you.  You've come so far and I'm so thankful that you still have so far to go.  I pray that we can keep you safe and healthy, and allow you to have beautiful memories from your childhood.  We aren't perfect parents and will never be.  Thank you for accepting us and trusting us. You two are precious and we love  you with all our hearts.

Happy 3rd Birthday, sweet girls.

Till next time, let your light shine!

Blessings, christen

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