Our Bumble of Pink turns one.

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Twelve months ago today our bumble of pink entered the world.

Miss Laoise, Leeshy Lou, Elle, Lou-Lee, Leeshkins, Lou-Doo, Missy Lou Lou, Monkey Girl, Little Miss Divil, she answers to them all, or rather giggles and ignores, then crawls away at breakneck speed waiting for us to catch up, turning back every few seconds, just to make sure that we’re playing along.

On the one hand the year has flown and she’s grown so quickly, but on the other it seems like she’s been here forever.

I was concerned before her arrival how our neat family unit would adapt, but adapt and evolve we have, and now we’re “Fox Family Five”, Mammy, Daddy, two boys running off ahead and a small girl usually sitting singing in her sling. (That’s when we’re not buried in laundry or removing dried in Weetabix from the floor).

We don’t have a baby anymore, Miss L is all toddler now, her sweet disposition giving way to little outbursts of frustration when she doesn’t get her own way, daring us not to give her what she wants.

She doesn’t miss a trick, she’s pointing and communicating “OPE” she shouts and tugs at the zip of her grobag in the middle of the night when she decides that she’s had enough of this bed lark. “OW” she commands as she hold her arms up, imploring us to take her out of the cot. “AW-AL” she requests, pointing at her brothers’ bedroom, seeking the one closest in age to her. “SSSSSH” she directs, chubby little finger up to her mouth as she watches the sleeping boys in their bunks.

She knows what she wants. “Ah, AHHHH” she tells me with a wag of her finger if I don’t do exactly what she requires of me, or if I touch a toy that I’m not supposed to, or lock a press that she’s making her way towards to empty.

She knows that she’s the boss. That each of the four other family members would do anything for her. That her three year old brother is her protector, watching what she eats, telling everyone what she can and can’t have, minding her, (riding her like a horse and rugby tackling her), commenting when she’s especially smiley how cute and happy she is. Her biggest brother is her entertainer, tickling her, making up silly songs that have her in hysterics.

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She’s my little partner in crime, singing along to the radio, climbing up the back of my legs and telling me “AMMAMAMA UHHH” (up). She sits contently on my hip as I go about my business, swinging out of my necklace, we chat and gabble, me and my girl.

Daddy too is wrapped around her little finger, she gives him the biggest smile of all when he arrives in from work, and pulls his trousers and tries to climb up his suit, determined to fill him in on her day.

She has yet to walk, despite cruising for months, she just won’t take the final plunge, it’s as if she’s waiting for the right moment, when nobody is looking to just run.

And now, we’re eating cake with pink icing, and toasting Miss Laoise, our bumble of pink, bumble of divilment, bumble of cuteness, bumble of love.

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