I cannot believe that it was almost ten years ago we were in China, picking up our younger daughter, Stephanie. It seems like yesterday that she was a screaming “bundle of joy.” Stefi has now just turned 11, and I am wondering where the years have gone. She is still quite energetic but screams much less now. 8-P
I have cherished getting to be Stefi’s dad and watching her grow. I love exploring the world with her and learning things together. I love teaching her. I love her jokes. I love the pictures she draws. I love that she is now the family expert on animals; if she tells us some strange fact about an animal, you can bet it is true. Last year in Mexico, there were “things” we had never seen before washing ashore in the strong wind — Mary and I did not even know if they were plant or animal, but Stefi took one look and told us they were sea cucumbers. She gets this from her voracious reading. Right now her favorite books are the Warriors series.
Five years ago she drew a picture showing first a little girl and then a very “dolled-up” older teenage girl. At the bottom she wrote, “I am six, but I want to be eighteen.” Every birthday I am a little sad that her wish is coming true so fast. But I just want her to always know how proud I am of her. She is becoming such a beautiful, sweet young lady. However, she will always be my little girl. And I will be her dad. Even when.