Happy One Year Birthday, AP! A year ago, you made your grand entrance onto the world's stage. Back then, your claim to fame was your calm, your delicateness, and your shock of jet black, Gund-soft hair. You were oblivious to the jealous machinations of your older brother, the power of your hypnotic eyes, and the fact that you were wearing hand-me-down newborn clothes chosen from the baby boy section. Your growth and personality development since then have been staggering. Your talking skills are dwarfed by your singing skills (this is currently your favorite song) which, in turn, are dwarfed by your pantomime skills (the vehemence with which you point for the object of your desire or express your dislike for something is enough to shake the barrettes right out of your hair). You love bathtime because it's the only time you really get one-on-one attention and are guaranteed a song or two if not an entire medley complete with Daddy and ZP bringing a guitar in and serenading you while you lounge in bubbly warm water.
It's a hard knocks life for you with The Beast on the prowl and many is the time your head has met the business end of a Thomas the Tank Engine train. But as he finally understood that you were not taking over his stuff (Daddy included) and you were here to stay, he has been pleased and proud to announce himself your big brother, your protector, your secret giver of extra vittles. Your willingness to eat, let alone eat exotic foods, still astounds us. We were burned so badly by Dr. No that every time you lean forward and open your mouth for masala channa or banana or haleem or cottage cheese, we are blown away.
Alas, your wonderful sleeping habits of laying in a crib and drifting off have fallen by the wayside, in part because you sleep earlier than ZP and have to be cloistered from his super sonic night time screeching rituals and in part because we spoiled you and you got used to sleeping next to me on the bed while holding my hand. As you are getting older, you are becoming more aware of injustice (ZP yanking a toy out of your hands and running away), the comings and goings of people (if Daddy doesn't pick you up the moment he walks in the door, there is hell to pay for everyone), and the superhero-like level of hearing you have (the moment the television turns on, you whip your head toward it before the picture even hits the screen). Such a girl, you are quite eager to dole out hugs, you are happy to lay your head on someone's shoulder, and you are extremely adept at giving smoochies. If you ever find a monkey within grabbing distance, you are more likely than not to plant a nice, loud, wet one on its head. Like your brother, you like to be scared, you like to be tickled, and you like to travel.
You have changed our lives and made them fuller and richer. You are a joy to your grandparents, aunts, uncles, and friends. You are healthy, clever, and have excellent taste in parents. We love you to pieces, even when, and sometimes especially when, you lord over us with your regality. Happy Birthday, me wee lass! Enjoy this limited-time-only clip show in your honor!