I met her when she was 5 (even though I’d seen photos of her since she was a baby before the day I met her). She was a kindergardener. L’s age now. I have been so blessed to have seen her grow during these 4 (quick) years. When I think of M, a few things come to mind. First, her sweet, loving personality and her smile. Next, her love of everything that has to do with books, pop-culture, music (Taylor Swift!), dancing (free-style!) and…American Girl.
It all started when M was 6 and her Dad and I took her to the American Girl store on Michigan Avenue. That afternoon with her was nothing short of amazing. I felt that day, we all built a little bond over M’s love of everything AG. Only now do I see how magical that day truly was. Here are two memorable images from that day. M will never forget her picture and name flashing on the “huge” marquee and she was soooo excited that Gabriella got her ears pierced and hair done!
This weekend was M’s 9th birthday party at the American Girl store that has since been built at Chesterfield Mall in St. Louis. What a fun day!
We kicked it off by getting M “dressed” for her special day. She chose to wear the same dress she wore for her first trip to the American Girl store in Chicago. We couldn’t believe it still fit her but it did! Dad had the idea to have her wear her princess crown (M of course agreed!) and I let her borrow my pink pearl necklace (that her Nana gave me at her wedding). We did hair and makeup in the “princess chair” in our bathroom. M even got her first birthday gift, some pink lipstick!
Upon arriving at the store, we browsed for awhile. Looking at M’s eyes was amazing. She was in her glory. In the car, and upon arriving at the store, M kept telling us how much she wanted Saige, the American Girl “Girl of the Year”. See, Saige is a lot like M. Saige loves horses and art and looks out for others. Almost exactly like a 9 year old that I know. And so the love of Saige started when we all made that connection. Good thing Dad and I had the foresight to have phoned into one of AG’s personal shoppers. Saige was all wrapped up and we took a quiet moment before everyone arrived for the party to give M Saige. The look on her face was priceless. Another magical moment I’m sure none of us will ever forget.
Before long, the party was in full swing. The 5 girls were chatting, their dolls seated at lunch right next to them in little booster chairs (um, adorable). The girls weaved their dolls a pink skirt. We were all sipping pink lemonade and “lunching” as I like to call it. The dolls were taking turns getting their hair done. The girls even did an impromptu toast to “girls having fun” with their dolls’ teacups. Everything down to the little details on her birthday cake were perfect. (photo credit to M’s Step-Dad on my camera – thanks!)
It all goes back for me to that magical day in Chicago. Soooooo love that American Girl is so special for all of us.