Olive Irene, 3 months old

Tuesday, August 31, 2021

 My sweets, 

You are the epitome of all the things I love so much about babies. 

Your squishy cheeks
your sweet coos and goos and purrs
your absolute delight over making eye contact
your frogger legs pumping in excitement
those spit bubbles
the softest skin
your tight grip on our fingers
even your little cry/whimper when you are trying to get our attention

it's all just perfection. 

You are definitely a Studerbaby and we can see a little of your brothers and sisters in all of your features. I think you most look like Violet when she was a baby, but you have quite a bit of Rusty's chin and mouth too. Aunt Uch and Abba say you look just like my baby pictures which I will take that compliment any day of the week! I have been convinced that you are going to have red hair from the very first day you were born (maybe I'm just wishing so hard) but if I can finally get a red head after six babies - I'd be thrilled! (Your great grandpap had red hair and so do five of your cousins on my side!) More and more family members seem to see the red tint as you get older, so fingers crossed! 

You are also a chubalubba which is my favorite kind of baby (probably because that's the kind of babies I always have, hah). You have these deliciously thick thighs and wrists and the classic sack-of-beans butt. All my babies have been built like those Little Snoozems stuffed animals from the '90s (Aunt Uch had like 10 of them). It also means you are durable which is a good thing because you have a lot of kids running around you, picking you up, and holding you all the time. You are moving into 3-6 size clothes (although I do love that tight onesie look) and you've rolled over belly to back already. You smile and laugh - especially if someone is talking directly to you, and you like being around all the normal chaos and noise of our family. You love being held or in the baby carrier so you can be close to us and in on the action. 

You are an easy addition to a big family because- girl, you just go with the flow; eight hours at the football fields? - ok! Noise doesn't bother you (it's funny to see people surprised at how you sleep through all our big family loudness) but you startle easily from sudden unnatural noise (like from technology but not from the dogs barking). 

You are adored by every person in our family. I have no doubt you are going to be a bonafide spoiled little baby of the family but it kind of feels like you are going to rock that look - so whatever. 

Your biggest brother Grey loves to kiss you and show you off to all of his friends. 

Gemma carries you around like she is your momma, caring for you and whispering wishes into your ear. 

Violet likes to make you laugh and smile. She is delighted by every new thing you learn to do. 

Rusty will sit with you for as long as it takes to calm you down; he gives you bubbas, sings to you ("baby, baby, please don't cry. You look kind of sad, I can see it in your eye"), and will snuggle you until you fall asleep and he gingerly gets up and tip toes away. 

Reddy loves you and will never remember a life without you being my his side - he kisses you nonstop all day, especially if you are upset. He is so patient with sharing time and toys, I am so grateful that you two have each other. I hope you will always be two against the world (even if the world is me sometimes). 

Being the baby of this big family is going to be both a blessing and a curse. Spoiled to the ends of the Earth by 7 people is going to gift you a life of all kinds of luxury. Your biggest brother will be a junior in high school when you start kindergarten....and his football buddies already all fawn all over you - good grief, child. But girl, that's also going to come with lots of handmedowns and waiting your due diligence on getting the best seat in the car and on the couch. Lucky for you though, you have a pretty great line up of big siblings who are going to pave a reputation for you that precedes you and so despite having to deal with a million, "ANOTHER Studer kid?!" all the way up through your school years, that it will at least come with a smile and not a look of terror (hopefully! hah!)

I know you'll carve out your own personality and bring out something special in each of us that we didn't know was there - just as your siblings have all done too. You might be the smallest of the Studer Half dozen, but you are special and mighty and wonderful. It's not always going to be a smooth path (although, I'm sure your siblings are going to wear Dad and I down quite significantly). But don't ever settle for easy, baby. The best parts of life happen when things are a little tricky and uncomfortable. I am so glad to get a front row seat to watch you become whoever it is you are going to be, my babyiest Studerbaby. 

My Livy Lou, 
You are almost always the sweetest part of my day. 
You are honestly like a spoonful of sugar.
I can't believe I get to hold you and kiss you and snuggle you all day. 
I am so grateful to be your momma. 
Your smile will soften all the hearts of the world. 
I love you, cutie girl. 
forever and ever,
my sweets, 

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