Ali Edwards Capture life. Create art.

February 18, 2014

And Just Like That She’s Five


My dear sweet Anna girl,

Last week you turned five.

People always say “it seems like just yesterday” but man it really does happen in the blink of an eye. It feels like you were just an infant. On your birthday I had lots of memories of your actual birth day – it was such a calm and peaceful experience. You were a wonderfully calm little baby girl and your Dad and Simon and I were so, so excited to welcome you into the world.

These days you’re all about all sorts of things.

Just recently you’ve been asking me all kinds of questions about animals.

“Mama, have you ever seen an alligator?”

“Mama, have you ever seen a whale?”

You are a fish. You love swimming lessons and being in the pool and playing with the other kids in your class.

(6 months old in 2009)

You love to color and draw.

You love playing with Barbies and other “people” toys that you can have act out all kinds of stories.

You can often be found singing – both songs you’ve made up and songs you’ve heard around here.

Last week you got to travel with Gramma Pati to Seattle to visit cousins and have some special one-on-one time with Grandma. She took you to the American Girl store north of Seattle so you could pick out your very own doll and celebrate your birthday in the restaurant there. You picked Isabelle (the girl of the year for 2014) and it sure looks like you guys are a great match. I love that you got to have this very special experience with your Grandma.

You are growing out your bangs. This means I’m constantly adding a clip to your hair that is usually taken out within a few minutes.

Dresses are still your favorite. You wear a uniform to school everyday and that’s made things really simple around here. You almost always choose to wear the jumper.

You love broccoli and roasted brussel sprouts and noodles and rice with soy sauce. And chocolate milk from Costco.

You have a mighty enthusiasm for life.

I love you Anna and I’m so, so thankful you are my daughter.


  • 1.
    Michelle Kelly said…

    Such a beautiful post for a gorgeous girl! Girls are so special and need to be treasured. Thank you for sharing!

  • 2.
    Maria said…

    Loved to read this letter! Such a sweet girl ♥

  • 3.
    Brooke said…

    Just beautiful. Happy birthday to you Anna!

    Is it ok for blog readers to feel like it was yesterday too? I clearly remember reading about your cloth diaper set up.

  • 4.
    Michelle t. said…

    Beautiful. My daughter’s 9, and it still seems like yesterday. Daughters are amazing. Michelle t

  • 5.
    Laura said…

    Happy birthday, Anna! :-)

  • 6.
    Jennifer K said…

    Sweet! They really do grow up so fast. Love her new doll! I was never much into dolls, but those American Girl dolls are wonderful and if I had any girls, I would give them one!

  • 7.
    Debbie said…

    Happy happy birthday Anna! Love your doll. You could almost be twins.:)

  • 8.
    Sue P, said…

    Lovely tribute to a sweet girl!

  • 9.
    Donna M said…

    Beautifully written:) I have an Anna too, she’s nearly 15. This brought back memories.

  • 10.
    Leslie said…

    I was at a scrapbooking Convention with you when you just first announced that you were going to have Anna. Don’t know why that stuck with me so but it was just such fun news. It really does seem just like yesterday. Happy birthday Anna!

  • 11.
    Michelle C said…

    Such a sweet post! I could write pretty much the exact same thing for my newly 5 year old daughter. I love this age but it’s truly a handful. ;) Happy Belated Birthday Anna!

  • 12.
    Lisa W. said…

    What a doll baby…she is SO cute!!! Happy Birthday sweet Anna girl! Lovely post!!!!

  • 13.
    Michelle said…

    5 is magical. Thanks Ali for sharing this beautiful letter to your sweet Anna x

  • 14.
    C.Robin said…

    Happy Birthday Anna, Ali she is beautiful.

  • 15.
    JenC said…

    This is beautiful Ali.

  • 16.
    Marti Richards said…

    Happy Birthday to Anna! I said the same thing when my girl turned 5 in November. Thankfully I have taken a million pictures to prove that she really was a baby b/c I would not have believed it otherwise!

  • 17.
    Mary R said…

    I still remember trying to guess what her name would be years ago. She is darling Ali and you are blessed indeed.

  • 18.
    susan said…

    Your words are like strawberries and cream, just delightful.

  • 19.
    Stacy said…

    Happy birthday, Anna!! My girl loves AG dolls too!!

  • 20.
    CJ said…

    Happy Birthday Anna. It makes me realise how long I’ve been following your blog – longer than five years for sure. My littlest boy is five, such a happy age I think, he is always so full of love for life.

  • 21.

    Roasted brussel sprouts? Go Anna!

  • 22.
    rhonda nickol said…

    Happy 5th Birthday Anna!

  • 23.
    Christin Dukes said…

    Wow! It seems like you were just posting you were pregnant. She has grown into a beautiful little girl and 5 is such an awesome age! Enjoy it because before you know it she will be 16!

  • 24.
    Leslie S. said…

    Happy Birthday Anna! She is so cute!!

  • 25.
    Teresa Igo said…

    ♫♫♫ Happy Birthday to you,
    Happy Birthday to you,
    Happy Birthday Sweet Anna,
    Happy Birthday to you! ♫♫♫

  • 26.
    young said…

    Great post. Happy Birthday to Anna!

  • 27.
    Tammy L said…

    She is absolutely precious…Happy Birthday Anna!

  • 28.
    Christine said…

    So sweet that Anna had quality “grandma time”. My daughter is 16 and still loves having time alone with my mom.

  • 29.
    Autumn said…

    Beautiful, Ali!

    Happy Birthday, Anna!

    I’ve been meaning to write my boy a letter too so I appreciate your letter! Served as a reminder for me!

  • 30.
    Cheyne said…

    Beautiful <3 …the first ever blog post of yours that I read was entitled "It's a Girl" when you were pregnant. I have read your blog every week since :-)

  • 31.
    dawn said…

    I can’t believe she’s 5 either, keep thinking it should be four. It’s been so fun to watch her grow up here on your blog. I love her zest for life and that sweet smile. I know you love having a girl to enjoy the girly things with too, Ali.

    Happy Birthday Anna!! What a great trip for you and grandma, love your new doll. I miss my girls playing with their American Girl dolls, so much fun they had with them.

    Thanks for sharing Ali!

  • 32.
    Kirsten J said…

    Golden! Happy birthday Anna!

  • 33.
    Margi said…

    Happy Birthday

  • 34.
    mandy mc said…

    Thank you for sharing the American Girl experience. We did it near Atlanta, GA and our daughter said it was the best day of vacation. That is saying something because the rest of the trip was at Disney. If anyone out there gets a chance to go please find the sight nearest you and head out! Totally worth the trip.

  • 35.
    Gypsy Chaos said…

    If only I had written letters such as these…
    The time doe fly; it’s not our imagination!

    I LOVE that Grandma bought Anna her American Girl doll. It seems to be a common tradition among grandmothers. My mother gave my daughter Molly, who was born the same year as my mother. I remember my daughter’s fascination. She’d read something in one of the books, and my mom would tell her about her memories of the same time and activity!

  • 36.
    Jakki said…

    It does goe by in a blink of the eye and just like that…your five year turns into an 18 year old who has just personally bought his own car or your 5 year old turns into a 21 year moving into his own apartment…*gasp*

  • 37.
    Vanessa Babin said…

    Ali, that is beautiful! Baby girls are so sweet. My granddaughter will be 5 this year and it seems like just yesterday we were celebrating her mom’s 5th birthday. Enjoy every day, every minute and every second.

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