She’s A Force

“A squirrel, a squirrel! Dere!” she pointed. She followed it with her eyes, traced it with her fingers on the window. She squealed. She demanded that I look.

There was a time not so long ago… or was it? Time is twisty and spiraling when you’re a parent, never a straight line.

There was a time when I looked at her and wondered, “When will you be your own person? When will you have your own thoughts?”

And one day I realized that day had already come, settling quietly like a butterfly on a branch. I never noticed it until I looked for it.

There she was, a little person with thoughts and opinions, likes and dislikes, loves and must haves… like Lambie, and yes, the pacifier, which I love too much still for it’s promised pacifying abilities to hate.

“Shoes! Pwetty PINK shoes!” she shrieked.

I swear, I did not push this on her. The girl was born this way, loving pink and… shoes. I think she has more than I do.

She was also born very… bossy… no, I mean determined. Yes, let’s call her determined. This? I may have gifted to her.

She will do. it. her. self.

But don’t let her girly side fool you. She is growing up with a rough and tumble big brother. She is loud like the rest of us. She’ll make her way.

She’s not afraid to laugh in the face of trouble, or to jump right into life.

She is fearless, funny, and strong. She makes her presence known by both sweet smiles that will charm the candy out of anyone’s hand, and defiant commands that let you know…

She’s a force.

Special thanks to Finish Line for sponsoring this post and sending Leyna her new “pwetty pink shoes!” which are Saucony Crossfires, and are available for purchase at, in case you need some for your little force, too. 


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  1. Such a lovely post. I love it when my kids’ personalities start developing. Can you please share what lens you are using for these photos?

  2. adorable pictures! she is a happy, beautiful little girl! btw, your watermark makes me both laugh and worry for the people who won’t get the humor in “don’t copy, right?” and will misunderstand it as, “don’t copyright!!!!” I think you need to slap a big ole © on those 😉

    • LOL! I guess you’re right. Though, this is not my usual photograph watermark. I need to re-upload my jpg to Lightroom, and I was just too tired tonight, so I slapped this one on in Photoshop instead.

  3. Awesome shots. That one bursting out of the curtains will be legendary, I’m sure.

    Ah, the paci. Better than the thumb. Mine gave hers up for sleeping at 4 yrs 6 mos and a day. Forgot it one night and that was that. So, no I didn’t have to worry about her graduating with it. Every time I thought about making a big deal about it, I would see a kid sucking this thumb and decided to drop it. If she needed something to soothe her, so be it.

    • I love hearing that. The only people who stress me out about dropping the paci are people whose kids never took one. I relaxed a lot after the pediatrician told me at her 2 year old appointment there were worse “vices” for her (me?) to have, and to not worry much about it right now. We’re trying to get her to cut back to just night and naptime, but after that, I’ll just roll with it for a while.

      • I had three binkies, all used at the same time, while growing up. Gave them up before kindergarten started and I’m a successful adult. She’ll be fine. And hey, she only uses one at a time!

  4. Tracy @ The UnCoordinated Mommy on

    I am so happy to see Leyna has a binky! Noah is still holding tight to his. It’s mostly limited to the crib, but it makes its way downstairs and in the car and out if the car on occasion. At least he stopped taking his little brothers!! Also, I adore the b&w of leyna!! So amazing!!

    • Oh wow, there are three black and white. I was talking about the last one, where she’s jumping out of the curtains. I guess it blew my mind so much the others just flew right out?

  5. Rebecca Farrow on

    beautifully written and beautiful pictures. hope you’re feeling better after creating this. btw, your kid is doing it again…that thing she does where in certain pictures she looks like my kid (not to mention I’m pretty sure they have the same personality, too).

  6. This resonates with me! On my kindergarten application my mother used “strong organizational tendencies”. This I also gifted to mine.

  7. your daughter is so adorable. I wish my 1year old would stay still long enough for me to take a good photo of her.

  8. Your baby and my baby are so close in age! I totally get this. Ever word and image of it. Great job breaking in the new camera (which I am totally jealous of — I will own a FF one day)!

  9. Ohmahgoodness!!! Did you make a beauty and catch some very special moments in your new camera. You are one lucky momma.

  10. Leppard Queen on

    Oh my gosh, Jill, this is priceless – I teared up just a little bit when I read this because I’m facing the same thing right now with my Amelia 🙂 Beautifully written and stunning photos – I especially love the set with her behind the curtain and then jumping out ;^).

  11. Excellent pictures! I love hearing about other “determined” little girls…I have one myself. I am sorry you feel bad about the paci, I tried so hard for both of mine to take one, but neither would. Learning to self soothe (even with a paci) is an excellent skill to learn

  12. Amanda Marsman on

    So sweet. This made me cry. She looks like you. Especially in the first photo. At least from what I can tell when I stalk your blog (which I totally love, obviously!).

  13. One of my neices very first sentancese was “oooo cute shoes.” Said as she was leaning out of a grocery cart looking at a fellow shoppers fancy heels. That lady LOVED it.

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