And just like that, we're parents to a six year old. Long gone is the toddler, the preschooler... Even the little girl is ever changing. You are growing up so fast darling girl! Your interests are adapting and developing, your character is maturing... You surprise us with your wisdom, your insight, and sometimes your sass! But then, now and again... We still see glimpses of that little impish two year old... Like this week when we went back to visit the goats. It had been four years since our last trip, and your joy and excitement and tenderness with the animals was just as heartwarming as last time. You are a gentle, nurturing soul and we love that about you Ava!
This year you have aced your way through year one... You are racing your way through books at breakneck speed, devouring two or three chapter books a week at the moment. You've just discovered Enid Blyton and there's no turning back! Though you've become quite a Dick King Smith fan too! The animal stories always win you over! You love to read to your younger siblings, and they love nothing more than curling up on the sofa with you and a good book. Often I'll come to say goodnight to you and find Heidi tucked up in your bed with you as you chuckle over some story. I love that you are bonding over books... It makes this bookworm Mama very happy!
This year you have moved away from the classic "Mamas and Papas" games and more towards the world of adventure. Your plan is to be an adventurer/scientist/missionary in the jungle, though you'd quite like to write some books too. Writing is your first love, and your handwriting is neater than mine. You draw and paint enthusiastically and though you think you're not very good and get frustrated sometimes that things don't look on the page as you wanted them to, your work is beautiful, and I already have some bits stored up to frame.
You are the kindest sweetest big sister... All three of your younger siblings adore you. As I write this it is 11.30pm, you are all tucked up in bed, and just now, in his sleep, a little Jonas voice called out for you twice. That little boy adores you! Of course you fight and bicker... You and Heidi wind each other up, Jonas gives you a thump now and again! But really they couldn't have a better big sister, and I think they know it. You are loyal, kind and generous and always have time for them. Except when you're watching TV, then you don't hear or see anything apart from what's on that screen. Let's just say screen time is seriously limited!
You're a go-getter and an enthusiastic tryer. You'll try new foods, you'll jump into ice cold fjords and you'll walk into a room full of people you don't know without batting an eyelid. You have an inner confidence, though you aren't particularly loud mouthed (you are definitely the child with the least volume in our house!) and a strong sense of identity. Oh, I hope you will always feel comfortable in your own skin, my Ava!
But our greatest joy in watching you grow up is seeing your love for the Saviour growing too. Your first prayer request every night is that your siblings will come to know Jesus, and it is such a joy to see you belting out the songs at church full volume, soaking up scripture verses and reminding us to pray. Your simple but solid faith in Jesus often puts me to shame... As he said "let your faith be like that of a child"... You are such an example for me in that, sweet girl. I have so much to learn from you.
Look to him, Ava M... And he will be your rock.
Wir haben dich so lieb Schatzi....
Mama und Papa xxx
PS These visits to the goats at Anestølen are always special... I will never forget our trip four years ago either...