Big Ben! Parliament! Westminster Abbey! Buckingham Palace! The National Gallery! Hyde Park! It's all been stunning and fabulous and we are having the best time.
For now, though, I'm here to wish my beautiful sweet boy the happiest birthday ever! Worst mother ever, right? I went back and forth on whether or not we should be traveling over Gabe's birthday, and although I'd love to be with him today, truth be told, he doesn't even know today is his birthday. We celebrated it a few days early with cake and gifts and lots of hugs, and we'll celebrate it again on Friday, and then again in school, and then again with a small party in January. I think he'll get plenty of birthday fun, and a happy mom and dad is probably more important to him, so for now, I'll push my mother's guilt to the side.
So... onto more important things (written the night before I left for London)...
To My Dear Sweet Gabriel,
Four years old! How is that possible? How can you be growing up so fast? I can almost believe it, though, because I see and hear the ways you are changing. Your speech is more complex, your mannerisms are more grown-up, you're getting taller, stronger, more coordinated
every day. You're wonderful and amazing and funny and the sweetest son we could ever wish for.
My favorite part of the day is when you come down the hall in the morning and climb into my bed. You snuggle up against my side and whisper, "Mama..." into my ear, and I just melt. For now, at least, you are so affectionate, so loving, so ridiculous disgustingly adorable, it just kills me. You hug and kiss me constantly, and want to climb onto my lap to snuggle with me. You love to be "comfy cozy" and we'll get under blankets and watch movies or read books, and
sometimes Josie will come and sit with us and you'll kiss her and say, "Hello baby girl!"
You love your sister to death, although since you two are interacting and playing together all the time now, there are also many moments where your screams and complaints drive me crazy. You love to run and laugh and tackle each other, and you are such an excellent big brother, teaching her, sharing with her, being (mostly) patient with her. You tell her you love her and get upset at bedtime if she won't give you your nightly besito and abrazo.
You adore your daddy too, and seeing him play with you and enjoy your company is such a treat. Last night you asked him if he missed you while he was at work, and when he said of course he did, you said, "yeah, I miss you too." You tickle each other and laugh until you can barely breathe, and you tell him stories about your day and of course, Buzz Lightyear.
What would we do without Buzz Lightyear? He is your one true obsession these days, and shopping for you has become the easiest thing ever because all you want is Toy Story All The Time. You're hilarious because you tell us complete stories about what Buzz said or did or what you think Buzz might do if he were here. You are growing up so fast and gaining this amazing imagination, it is such a pleasure to watch.
You are the most amazing blessing to us, Gabe, and I thank God every day that you're my son. You are so sweet and easy-going and happy, and I pray you stay this innocent and content forever. You are perfect and wonderful and gorgeous and brilliant. The things you learn every day astound me.
Tonight I told you that you were the most perfect Gabe to me, and I was so thankful that you were mine, and you told me you didn't want anyone else to be the same Gabe as you. You don't have to worry, my sweet boy, no one could ever be you. No one could ever take your place in my heart, and forever and ever and ever, you will be my baby.
I love you,