A whole year old...how did that happen?!

I can't help but get all sappy when I think back to the day my sweet girl was born. I don't know if this seems weird, but I place this day in history above our wedding day. Our wedding was nice and all, but I don't think anything can quite compare to a little human being born into the world. Holding her for the first time gave me such a rush of emotions - I was in shock, awe, fear (she was pretty blue when she first came out!) and joy. I know, I had a "dream birth" that went off without a hitch...and maybe this all just added to how wonderful of a day it was for me... I mean, yes, it was hard and very painful (let's not let 'dream birth' distort the reality too much!) but the reward at the end was perfect and almost made me forget about the pain it put me through.
I think you can see the bliss in my eyes as I fed my baby for the first time. I was very happy and just soaked it all in as I held her in my arms.

And now she's 1 year old! Wow. And I'm still super duper happy to have her in our lives (I'd probably win some award for worst mother ever if I said otherwise, right?). But really, she makes me smile and laugh ten thousand times a day (maybe a time or two more than Pete does - how is that possible?!).
We have so much fun together. She just recently started rambling a bunch of 'words' (as if she's talking to us, but they aren't really words yet). She did this at 4am today. Not the time I wanted her to be talking... I guess she had something to tell us because she was not going back to sleep easily and when I brought her to our bed she stood right up and started rambling on and on. I wonder what she was trying to say?

She's walking pretty well while holding onto only one hand now. She has taken steps between people, but she hasn't initiated anything on her own yet (we almost have to push her to get her to walk from one person to the other). I have a feeling she will be walking on her own soon enough.

Hailey is a bit of a strong willed girl (I'm learning). Just recently she started protesting diaper changes by turning over and getting on her hands and knees while in the middle of the change... then she screams and wiggles as I try to make her lay back down. I have found that if I give her something to play with she is much more content. If I don't have something handy to give her, I have put her diaper on her with her standing up and even crawling.

I realized yesterday that she's a big girl now. She's not the baby I once cuddled up so close with. She's my big girl who crawls all over the house and gets into everything she shouldn't. If she doesn't want to be held, she lets me know. I feel like being 1 is a whole new phase already. Like she's going to test her independence and test me along with that...
I just love this little girl. This next year might be a challenge in some ways, but I think we'll be alright as long as Hailey keeps laughing her silly laugh (and I don't see that going away any time soon!). I mean seriously, what's not to love about this cute little girl???

(ps - her birthday dress was picked out by daddy!)