Sunday, June 03, 2012

Ben & Lilly

Ben and Lilly,

I miss you.  It breaks my heart that in your years of innocence (well, close to innocence, anyway) that I will miss a single second, let alone half a year.  To see you smile, even from the other side of the planet on a little computer screen, melts my heart.

You are close.  Like your older siblings, you have more in common than you realize.  Ben, you are definitely a boy--happier to play with robots and transformers than with dolls.  Lilly, you are most definitely a girl, who would rather try on all of the dresses in her closet than do anything else.  Yet you are so alike--and find common ground between the two of you.

Lilly, you finally decided on the day after I left to put the diapers away and never looked back.  It breaks my heart now, knowing that after all four of you I have changed my last diaper.

I miss you so much.  You are both growing up so fast.



Sunday, April 22, 2007

First Communion


Congratulations on your First Communion this weekend. I know it was hard for you, and a lot of work that your Mommy and I don’t give you enough credit for.

You looked so beautiful. I know you got sad when I told you that the next time I was going to do this with you was when you were all grown up and you would be getting married, and in a way it makes me happy that you want to stay little. You and Sammy did so well when Mommy and I got married yesterday. I am so glad that you were allowed to help out. Grammy and Grampy even cried when you got to make the sign of the Cross on our foreheads.

I love you very much.



Monday, March 26, 2007


Sarah, Sammy, and Ben—

What an amazing week. I could never, in a million years, have imagined how much fun I had this week with you and your Mom. But you know what? The reason we had so much fun didn’t have a whole lot to do with Disneyland. We had fun because we got to spend four days together, with no outside distractions. For four days all of us were completely happy.

When I held you, Sarah and Sammy, at the end of our trip it dawned on me how quickly you were growing up, and how soon I won’t be able to hold you like that anymore. Although I was happier than I’ve been in a long time, it broke my heart.

It was a moment I’ll never forget.


Monday, January 22, 2007


Sarah and Sammy--

I was so proud of you this weekend. You have come such a long way in the past year that it brings tears to my eyes. Sammy, I love the fact that you're still young enough that you are more impressed by the stuffed Tiger attached to your trophy than you were about the trophy itself. Sarah, you showed me more courage and determination than I think I will ever have by continuing on even after you were scared and hurt, and doing it to a level better than any of the other girls you went up against.

I am so proud of you guys.



Friday, January 19, 2007

I Miss You


I'm sorry we've been away from you for so long. The rest of the family has been so busy in your first year with other activities that you're just too young to take part in. I'm hoping that the move to Alabama will alleviate that--but in the meantime we say goodbye to you almost every day, and I'm limited to seeing you on weekends and evenings, and if you manage to wake up in the early morning hours.

On that note--wake up early again. I have treasured those dark mornings when it's just you and me watching TV at 5 am. Sometimes I feel like it's the only time I have with you alone and I love it, even though it means getting 2 hours less of sleep.

You're getting so big so fast. With Sarah she was it--and got every second of attention she wanted. Even with your brother it was pretty evenly split, so I feel like we got to watch intently as his little body grew. But we've been so busy that we haven't been able to watch you grow as much as I wish we could.

I love you,


Friday, June 16, 2006

Dear Princess--

News of you coming into my life changed everything as I would know it forever. Your Mom and I were on slightly different paths, heading in slightly different directions. To be honest, knowing how the military works, I don't know for sure if we would have ended up together. Your sudden appearance into my world flipped everything upside down, in ways that I could only imagine. The first time you broke my heart was when I held you and they drew blood from your heel, also drawing the first of many tears that we would share together.

You've always been brave. You were brave when we used to take you on 14-hour cross-pacific flights back and forth to Japan. You were brave when you gave up your pacifier. You were brave when you realized that having a little brother meant that you would be the only child no longer. You were brave when you went to pre-school so that Mommy could work again. You were brave when we lifted you up and travelled away from the home and school you loved to take you to Arizona. You were brave when you started Kindergarten and played soccer. You were brave when you had to sing in front of a larger assembly than either your Mommy or Daddy has ever had to speak in front of. You were brave when you readily accepted the task of being a real big sister to your newest baby brother.

I learned how to be a father through trial and error on you. When your brother showed up as unexpectedly as you did it showed us how different two children could be, and still be loved just as much. I was still learning how to be a Dad when, in your grandmother's house, I stared in awe as you took your first steps while I was alone with you. Learning still when you

You're getting big now. Too big for me to believe. You read books to me now, instead of I to you. You excel at almost anything you do. Last night you had your fourth tooth fall out. I look at your newest brother and see you in the little bundle that sleeps between your mother and I. I love watching everything you do, but I occasionally miss that little monkey that burst into my life seven years ago.


Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Windy Night

Dear Sarah,

I got mad at you last night because you wouldn't stop whining while you were 3/4's asleep in your bed. With your age I feel like we've gotten to the point that the assumption is being made that the sounds coming out of your mouth are always a whine unless proved otherwise. I didn't ask what was wrong, never mind that the Arizona winds were howling outside or that it was cold and dark in your room. The only thing I thought of was that I was tired and you were being needy.

I want you to know that I missed an opportunity last night. I missed the opportunity to calm you down and watch you sleep in the dark. I want you to be needy now, because soon you won't be, least of all for me. You are still one of the most beautiful visions in the world when you're alseep.