Dear Vaughn,

Today you turned three. I've been thinking all day about what I could tell you today, on your very special birthday. Yesterday evening your Grandma and Grandpa Emett, and Grandma Fitzgerald drove six hours so that they could share this special day with you. They brought you presents, and treats, but mostly their love. At one point in the evening while you were all smiles, wearing some new Spider Man pajamas that Grandma Emett brought you, and basking in the attention of your Grandparents I turned to my Dad, your Grandpa and namesake and said "he's got Spiderman p.j.'s and is surrounded by some of his favorite people in the world--what more could a little boy ask for?"

So even though this day was filled with fun activities-- your very first soccer game, opening presents, singing songs, eating warm peach cobbler made with fresh market peaches, going to a church party in the evening, and staying up late to pick up your Daddy from the airport-- mostly I want to tell you how much you are loved. How many people surround and insulate your life that adore you.

I remember when I was first pregnant with you-- before I even knew I was pregnant, I had a dream about my Grandpa Fitzgerald, who had passed away several years before. In the dream, which was so vivid to me, he, along with my Mom's Grandma Jantzen-- a woman who I only remember faintly from childhood-- but who was a huge influence on my Mom, and who she was very close with-- both came to me and were trying to tell me something important. I still remember the way their faces looked-- so excited and filled with joy. I woke up before they could tell me what it was. I was so happy from the dream because it seemed so real. I called my Mom and told her about it and then told my Grandma about it. I wondered what it was they were trying to tell me, and were so happy about.

Two weeks later when I took my pregnancy test, which told me that I was going to be a mother for the first time, I knew what they knew-- that this beautiful, sweet, loving, energetic, creative and wonderful little boy was going to join my family.

I love to think of all the people both in this world, and those beyond, who are smiling down on you. You come from generations of loving and capable arms-- and that same love that has carried me, and helped me become the woman I am, is now bringing joy to your life.

You are such a special little boy. Sometimes I feel inadequate to the task of being your Mom-- you are so full of life, and I often wonder if I'm doing a good enough job. But then I remember all the people who are helping me, and I know we will be just fine.

Oh Vaughnster, I love you. My heart is full at the thought of you-- of the life, the happiness, the joy that you bring all of us. You give me so much more, and have taught me so much more than I can ever return.

Happy birthday sweetheart.