When I look back in my mind’s eye to her last birthday, the contrast in her demeanor is so obvious. After a “from bad to worse” 2015-2016 school year followed by a switch to a different classroom, things have turned around dramatically for our Katie. It’s so good to see!
Fifteen somehow sounds like such a large number; maybe that’s why I very much wanted to share these photos with you tonight. She’s now been part of our family for roughly one third of her life.
Cake is one of the greatest loves of Katie’s life. Good thing for her we have fifteen birthday parties a year! For Katie’s benefit, we sang her name in each line of the “Happy birthday” song tonight. “Happy birthday to Katie…” Katie’s turn to have a birthday!
Do you remember how tiny she was in my lap 5 1/2 years ago? Look at her now!
Sometimes when she’s very happy, she will spontaneously reach out to give me a hug. It’s very sweet. She still has significant attachment issues, but she’s doing much better with it than last year.
She placed most of the wrapping paper in the trashcan like a big girl.
When Katie is happy, Katie moves!
The only practical gift we gave her was an EZ PZ molded bowl and place mat to help her progress in feeding herself. Everything else we gave her was just to make her smile. It doesn’t take a lot to make her a very happy girl!
Instead of their traditional cards, the children each made her a different color of heart with his or her name on it. I will hang these on her window in her room so I can point to them and remind her, “Look, Katie! Peter loves Katie, James loves Katie, Josie loves Katie (etc.)!”
But presents are more interesting. *wink* (Yes, I know this is very blurry, but I never discard a photo just because it’s imperfect if it captures something more important.)
Her expression is so cute here.
Her first several years home, she paid no attention to stuffed toys. Now, she will give them a hug. This puppy vibrates and plays very soft, soothing music. It’s her new favorite toy!
Happy 15th birthday, Katie! You are a gift to our family!