Friday, April 11, 2014

Arielle turns 8

Please excuse the lateness of this post! We have had lots of power outages, and a shipping container arrive this week so our internet time has been limited!

But we did not want to forget to write about our sweet Arielle’s 8th birthday! Every year we like to look back at how our children have grown and I love to see their personalities emerge.

Arielle has grown up so much! Now that she is 8 I realize she has spent half of her life here in Niger, and it is reflected in how well she adapts here and how at ease she is in the homes of our African friends, out in huts, in the streets, in her school etc. This is just her life and she is content!

We have great friends here and on her 8th birthday we had a pool party and cake with our friends. While she misses her friends and cousins in Canada, we are blessed with good friends and teammates here as well.

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Arielle, each year I am amazed at how much you grow as a person. I love how your eyes light up when you really smile (no more fake smiles!) and how you giggle and love to be hugged and snuggled. You are also pretty excited you lost your first tooth!

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You are not afraid to try new things. You may be timid to speak up and you stay so quiet, but you will also climb onto the donkey, or try that new food you have never tasted before. You like to help out in the kitchen at home but also in the homes of our friends. You are a great helper.

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More than anything, you love family. You don’t need to be with anyone else. Bennett has for years been your very best friend. Every single day you two play board games, card games, hall hockey, cards, etc. together. You come home, do your homework, and rush to do things together. I am sure when you are teens you will lose some of that, but I hope you remember these days when it was the best part of your day to play with your brother!

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You are also a wonderful big sister to Ella. You calm her when she cries, you hold her in your lap, or hold her soother and rub her forehead if she is crying in her car seat while we drive. You love to help change diapers (eww!) and you can’t wait until she starts eating real food so you can feed her. I am thankful for how much you embrace your role as a big sister. There has never been a single day when you have shown anger, or jealousy or any negative emotion towards having this new little baby in our lives who can take up more of our time than you are used to before. You have embraced her and you wrap your heart around hers. She will be so lucky to have a big sister like you to look up to.

 

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My wish this year for you is to continue to see you grow in confidence. You have so much to offer people with your great ideas, generous heart and desire to help. But you often stay quiet and watch from the background with other people. I pray you would realize how special you are and find your courage. I am so blessed to call you our daughter.

 

Happy Birthday Arielle!

 

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