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greenbanner

21 July 2009

one

yay!

This evening, we three sat on the couch, a bottle of milk thrown off to the side, a dozen board books at our feet. As much as Danny and I wished for Little Bean to fall asleep in that moment, we knew we were wasting our time in wishing. She sat on my lap, her eyes wide open, clapping her hands.

She claps all the time, this little one. When she wakes up in the morning, she opens her eyes, wobbles to a sitting position, and begins to clap, as soon as she sees the light.

Little Bean is huge joy, arms open wide to embrace the world. She's a character, full of kind and mischievous grins in equal portions. She loves to dance, wiggling her hips to Talking Heads and Caspar Babypants. She giggles under her breath as she walks from one end of the couch to the other, her grip lighter on the fabric every day. She eats fresh raspberries in the morning until her cheeks and lips are stained sweet red. At meals, she offers us bites of her biscuits and won't eat her dinner until we are both sitting down with her, paying attention to our food too. And she loves other people, staring up at each new person who enters the room with full attention, a big grin, and then outstretched arms.

She is our favorite person in the world.

And by the time you read this, she will be one year old.

papa and Lucy II

Oh Little Bean, you of the intent gaze and pert grin. How I wish I could write you a letter encapsulating this year. It's hopeless, of course. This has been such a roller coaster of a year, beginning with you not breathing easily, in the ICU the first terrifying week of your life, to major brain surgery at 9 months old and now these grace days of summer, you crawling on the grass as we work on the garden blooming around you. These long days of light and laughter, ease and the two of us finally shrugging all the fears of this year off our shoulders. This summer, we are breathing. And so are you.

This girl, she loves her papa. And as you can see from his expression in this photo, he adores her. I watch his face soften when she crawls vigorously into the kitchen, her hands slapping the wooden floor in her need to go faster toward him. I hear her banging a wooden spoon on her little wooden stove, in the room right behind him, as he stirs and simmers a sauce on the stove. He beams when she is near. He talks to her in silly voices as he changes her diaper, putting a book in her hands, which she holds above her, studying. And every other evening, he holds her close, and whispers in her ear, and waits until she curls up in his arms, finally asleep, before he looks up. There are tears in his eyes.

I thought I loved this man before. Before Little Bean, the time that feels almost surreal now. The love I feel for him now, as the father of our daughter, is more than I could ever say. He has been through all of this with me. We don't have to talk. We pick rattles and stuffed animals off the living room floor, bending down together, side by side, after she has fallen asleep. We haven't slept properly in months, and we still aren't fighting. We're laughing.

And talking about her.

Lucy with her hands in the air

This kid (because we really can't call her a baby anymore), she's a fighter. A survivor, man. She has been through the wringer, and she has come up grinning. Eating grass in the backyard just to taste it. Conducting small symphonies with her hands, or gripping the air in her excitement like she is holding onto a motorcycle, or waving hello to all the check-out people in the grocery store. Because she is here. And it's all so damned good.

She's not always happy, of course. We wouldn't want that. Who is? When it's time to go to bed, she fights. The kid does not like to go to sleep. She knows — she's missing too much. I remember that aching feeling when I was young, the feeling that parties happened when I lay in my bed alone at night. (If only she knew how boring we are in the evening, weary and leaning against each other, willing ourselves to make it up to Jon Stewart and most nights failing.) After her surgery, her sleep was ragged and imperfect, understandably. For weeks, we were up every hour, on the hour, all night long. Thankfully, that's over now. Now, she just squirms in our laps and tries to charm her way out of it by making funny faces at us.

(We still make her go to bed, though. After we laugh.)


Lucy, make the face!

This is the face she has been making for weeks now, not to show surprise or amazement, but just to make us laugh. The first morning she made this face, I nearly fell off the couch in spasms of laughing. Last week, we were out to brunch with our friends Lorna and Henry, and Lorna's parents. There wasn't much conversation at first, because Little Bean sat up in her highchair, looked down the table filled with black-eyed pea cakes, scrambled eggs, and frittatas, and made this face, over and over again. And then smiled wide, enjoying the way she had made us happy.

She makes sound effects and copies every phrase we say. She talks up a storm, in babbles and clear words. She makes signs to be let out of her highchair when it is covered in the last few bits of grated cheese and smears of pureed spinach. She eats and eats, grabbing food with her fists, one finger outstretched, smiling. (Except for the days she turns her head away, disdainfully, wondering why we want her to eat a slice of avocado, even though she inhales one nearly every other day. Those days, we know she's about to cut another tooth, and we brace ourselves for a long night.)

She eats up life, this one. She gobbles it all up.

Lucy contemplates

At the same time, Little Bean loves to sit quietly and contemplate. She's independent, not needing to be attached to our legs. Often, Danny will be in the kitchen, cooking away, and I'll be sitting at this computer, typing away, and to our left is Little Bean, sitting on the hardwood floor with a book in her hand. (This part of our house is one big open space, all of us in it together, and yet separate.) She loves books. She pulls books off of every shelf, grabs one, and plops down on the floor to turn its pages. Right now, her favorite seems to be Team of Rivals, by Doris Kearns Goodwin, or The New Yorker Book of Humor Writing. Last week, Danny looked over and saw her staring at Plato's Republic. She's not reading, of course. She's staring, drinking it all in. Maybe she likes Penguin paperbacks as much as I do. Maybe she's just parroting our actions.

But I never imagined that a kid before one would be as excited by books, or have as much fun feeling the pages between her fingers, as this kid does.

She takes it all in. She's intensely curious, wide-eyed, unblinking. She is so interested in people, and the world, that she doesn't slump on my lap, playing with her toes, as the world goes by. She watches it all.

I wish I knew what was in her mind.

I love seeing the world again, anew, present and alive, through her eyes.

mama kisses Lucy

She is, without a doubt, the biggest yes of my life.

"...but now here's this tiny baby
and they say she looks just like me
and she is smiling at me
with that present/infant glee
and i would defend
to the ends of the earth
her perfect right to be"

— Ani DiFranco, "Present/Infant

Obviously, we dig our kid. She's cool.

But she's not singular. There are so many babies, alive and kind, making funny faces at their parents, staring at books and loving the taste of food. She has brought this to us: the palpable sense that we are not alone.

"Sometimes, I look at her and love her so much that I feel like my heart is going to explode," Danny said to me the other day. I feel the same. However, instead of this feeling allowing us to narrow down t0 only us three, we feel more connected to the world, and more humble, after she arrived. Loving her as we do, we think of our parents, and their parents, and the parents of our friends, and our friends who have kids, and the parents we see on television who can't afford good food for their kids, and the parent that Little Bean might someday be. She is one of millions, spectacular to us, certainly loved, and among friends.

And we want her always to know that she is not alone in this. We want her to love humanity.

papa and Lucy

So go ahead, Little Bean. Keep leaning into life, knowing you are safe in our embrace. Lean forward with that grin of yours, those wide-open eyes. Try to drink it all in. Clap and make faces. Contemplate. Be awake. Be silly. Feed the people you love. And know that you are not alone.

Happy Birthday, Lucy Marie Ahern, our Little Bean. You are one year old.

You have given us the best year of our lives. Here's to many, many more. Please.



These incredible photographs were taken by our friend, Clare Barboza. She's magic with kids, to be sure, and Little Bean loves her. But where she really shines is with food photography. Go on over to Clarebarboza.com to see her work. We would love to have any of her food photographs hanging in our kitchen, for Little Bean to see as she stands beside us to cook. We're sure you will too.

114 Comments:

At 12:17 AM, Anonymous Sirena said...

What a wonderful description of your love for/celebration of Lucy, Shauna! She's SO CUTE and I just love the new dimension she brought to this site. I can feel how joyous she's made your lives just through your writing! Happy Birthday! And how I love this site: sometimes I stop by for a recipe and get a whole lesson on how to celebrate the bounty of life :-)

 
At 12:31 AM, Anonymous Jessica Waters said...

breathtakingly beautiful, Shauna (do I say that every time? It seems that way).

It never ceases to amaze me that I can look at my 18 year old baby girl, Dakota, with that same heart-bursting love and wonder how it could be that there were actually decades of my lifeminutes before her. No memory of that time.

I do know that the heartbreak of a teenage girl (how did she get to be SO ANGRY?) is now subsiding and I can feel her moving back to the girl that once climbed into my arms and whispered that she wanted to velcro herself to me.

I will never not get tears in my eyes when I watch her sleep.

Happy birthday, little Lu.

 
At 1:04 AM, Blogger amanda said...

Beautiful post. Lucy is lovely - she looks a lot like Danny, at first glance.

Happy birthday to Bean, and let's hope her second year is a lot easier than her first.

 
At 1:07 AM, Blogger HannahHandpainted said...

Aww.

Happy, happy birthday. What an adorable triumph. I agree with you about the loving your husband even more as a father part, too. Big time!

XO,
Hannah

 
At 1:23 AM, Blogger RDV said...

What a lovely post. Happy Birthday Little Bean! I am so happy for all three of you.

 
At 2:49 AM, Anonymous ChikaBebe said...

she's so cute.. gee i want to cuddle her

 
At 2:58 AM, Blogger Jenn said...

What a wonderful post, Shauna! She is a very beautiful little girl and boy oh boy does she ever look like her father!!

The time goes too fast. I look at mine with wonder and awe as they try to make their own way in the world.

Happy Birthday, Little Bean!!

 
At 3:25 AM, Blogger Leigh said...

Happy Birthday to Little Bean!

I cannot believe how fast the past year has gone!

She is a beautiful little girl, as like you said, you can hardly call her a baby anymore, with such a zest for life. And her expressions? How can you not giggle with her every minute?

Congratulations to all three of you!

 
At 4:12 AM, Anonymous Shannon said...

Oh it breaks my mama heart. I remember when our oldest learned to walk. I cried and told my husband "it's like watching my heart walk away." It's impossible not to love them so much it hurts.

 
At 4:46 AM, Anonymous Margaret Roach said...

That you call her Little Bean is perfect: Beans, being legumes, fix life-giving Nitrogen into the surrounding soil, making all more fertile and well.

And I hope that The Dancing Bean likes David Byrne on his own, too. A theme song here (from the oldie 'Look Into the Eyeball') is 'Neighborhood,' which I think Lucy will love, because of the lyric:

"We got peace, love & monkey business - gonna reach the very top.
There'll be - pride, hope & Sunday mornings - all the things I'm thinking of."

 
At 5:32 AM, Blogger Gemma said...

Happy Birthday Lucy! I hope you all have a wonderful day celebrating together.

 
At 5:55 AM, Anonymous Randi said...

What an amazing post! Happy, happy birthday, Lucy! Kids are magic and she is beautiful! How wonderful that you are loving every minute. And as hard as it seems to believe, it just keeps getting better! I am about to take my littlest on a trip to Zurich to visit my friend. She is now 8 and this our first trip with just the 2 of us. I am sooo excited!

I love your blog and how the emotions for food and life explode off the page. The recipes are fabulous (when does the new book come out?)! Thanks for sharing!

Randi

 
At 5:56 AM, Blogger Hockey Mom said...

Happy Birthday little one! My youngest is 17 years old now but I still remember both my boys when they came into this world and being in the center of the maelstrom they created with their energy.

#1 - fiercely independent - always his turn.
#2 - wanting to make anyone and everyone laugh all the time.

What a gift your little girl is!

 
At 6:03 AM, Blogger Green Acres in the City said...

Happy Birthday Little Bean!
Shauna you never cease to amaze me, what a beautiful description of parents love for their children. I can't wait sometimes for my guys to go down at night and then I can't wait to get that first morning love either. They are never out of my mind or heart. Mr. Miller and I love them so much! Parenthood the greatest accomplishment of our lives. Many blessing to you and your family for year 2!

 
At 6:08 AM, Blogger Christine said...

Wow that was lovely Shauna. Happy Birthday Little Bean!

(She has Danny's eyes! So expressive and I love her little "O" lips. So very cute.)

 
At 6:27 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing this. what a joy L is. I have followed your blog for years now, and never commented. I have a little L as well (18mos), and your words in this post moved me beyond where my own words could go.
What a wonderful world.
Many blessings for the three of you.

 
At 6:36 AM, Blogger Laura said...

Happy Birthday little Bean! What a beautiful post, and thanks for sharing her pictures.

It only gets better, wait until she starts talking, and running. Enjoy every second, they grow so fast!

 
At 7:05 AM, Blogger Danielle said...

This is just beautiful. Congratulations, and happy birthday, Little Bean!

 
At 7:26 AM, Anonymous Paige Orloff said...

Happy birthday to the loveliest Little Bean ever, and kudos to her mama for so beautifully capturing her story...here's to many more chapters for you all!

 
At 7:27 AM, Blogger Anita (Married... with dinner) said...

happy happy birthday, beautiful Bean. We're so glad you're here with us... and that you found the perfect mama and papa :)

 
At 7:29 AM, Blogger Marie said...

Happy birthday Lucy Marie! Shauna, it's so inspiring to see how much you love and appreciate life.

Thanks for all the love you send out into the world from this space~

 
At 7:32 AM, Blogger chocokat0718 said...

This is so incredibly beautiful!! Happy Birthday, Lucy, may you always be so curious and amazing. XO Kat

 
At 7:36 AM, Blogger Jordan said...

She is so adorable! I'm incredibly happy for you and your little family.

 
At 7:38 AM, Blogger Shauna said...

Happy Birthday to your sweet baby girl. My own daughter will have her first birthday next month, and reading this post brought tears to my eyes--I share so many of your thoughts about this crazy, beautiful journey.

I am hoping you will celebrate making it through one year of motherhood just as your celebrate her first year of life, they haven't taken us down yet! :)

 
At 7:42 AM, Blogger Zoomie said...

She is darling, and so dear with her funny faces and intent gaze. To me, she's so like Danny but I know they change to look first like one parent and then like another, so your turn is coming. Happy Birthday, Little Bean. And happy first year of parenting, Shauna and Danny. You have done a super job with her - she's so open to her world!

 
At 7:45 AM, Blogger Lisa (Homesick Texan) said...

Happy birthday to Little Bean--what a beautiful bundle of joy!

 
At 7:50 AM, Blogger Kelly and Kelly said...

Happy Birthday Lucy! She is adorable.

What a beautiful post as well. Your blog has made me want to live a more mindful life. It has been another stop on my quest. Another bit of inspiration. This is one great post to add to my parenting tool box - it makes me wish to be a more mindful parent. One foot in front of the other, right?

It's all beautiful, thank you.

 
At 7:50 AM, Blogger Cegoodner said...

Beautiful! Happy Birthday to Lucy . . . I think you've written her the perfect letter right here Shauna :)

 
At 7:51 AM, Blogger Riveted said...

Seriously, I'm weeping!

Having just put together a notebook/journal for my sister's birthday (during which I sorted through tons of old photos), my familial antenna are on high alert...and this amazingly beautiful tribute to her daughter for her birth anniversary, was effortless to hone into.

Thanks for inspiring a good cry...I needed it. Many blessings to you three!

 
At 8:02 AM, Blogger Clare said...

Lucy is so incredibly lucky to have you and Danny as parents. And what a gift you have given her by writing something so utterly beautiful that celebrates her first year of life....she will love reading that when she is older.

I am so happy to know you three, and feel lucky to have you in my life.

Happy Birthday, Lucy! A big, HUGE hug and kiss to you!! XOXO

 
At 8:03 AM, Anonymous Dana said...

The photos and the prose are priceless. She is lucky to have a mommy who can capture so beautifully who she is at each age. Congratulations on making it through that first year - it is a true accomplishment. As the mother of two, I can tell you that 12-18 months they just get cuter and cuter and more fun everyday. Prepare yourself... :)

 
At 8:29 AM, Blogger Britt said...

Amazing--what a joy. There is such an open and beautiful awareness in those eyes. She's truly a miracle.

Happy Birthday Lucy!

 
At 8:40 AM, Blogger Seattle Tall Poppy said...

What a wild ride this year has been! And I'm thrilled to see you celebrating her birthday. Sweet girl.....

 
At 8:54 AM, Blogger K-Sweet said...

Words and photos that brought tears to my eyes as I thought of my own kids and how much I love them. Happy birthday, Lucy.

 
At 8:57 AM, Blogger Swiss said...

I am so happy you shared your story of your love. It really is beyond words for me to explain how much I enjoy how you see this girl, your Danny and life. I am also honored and happy I got to see your family together shopping....so normal (except the camera) and am remembering she smiled at me first.

Happy Birthday *Wonderful* child.

 
At 9:03 AM, Anonymous Marion said...

What a great day it is, indeed. Thank you for sharing this story with us. We look forward to growing up with Little Bean.

 
At 9:06 AM, Blogger Athena said...

Happy Birthday Little Bean!

Beautiful photos, Shauna :) Thank you so much for sharing.

 
At 9:23 AM, Anonymous Allison Day said...

How beautiful! A very happy birthday to your Lucy, your Little Bean.

I always love coming here and reading about your day-to-day life with her, and every time I can't help but hope that someday when I have children, that it will be even just a little close to what you write about with her. You express yourself so well, it really feels like all us strangers can get a little glimpse into your life. So thank you for that. And again, happy birthday to Lucy!

 
At 9:36 AM, Blogger Katherine said...

Your posts about Little Bean make me less afraid of having a child.

 
At 9:37 AM, Blogger Lisa said...

How beautiful! You are truly blessed!

 
At 9:50 AM, Anonymous smallbluebird said...

Lovely lovely Lucy, Happy Birthday. Isn't it amazing that, as Doris Lessing wrote, when you look at your child, she is all the stages of her life at once? Infant, toddler, walking, running happy kid. I know you love the Beatles, but I'm thinking of Dylan's song, Forever Young, for Lucy today.

May your heart always be joyful,
May your song always be sung,
May you stay forever young

 
At 9:53 AM, Blogger EponaRae said...

Tears tracing down, joy lilting my lips upward, leaning into the screen to meet you: Happy Birthday, Little Bean; Happy Birth-Day, Shauna & Danny. Sweet Blessings on you All.
~R

 
At 10:01 AM, Blogger glutenfreemominct said...

Oh she is just delicious!!! Thanks so much for sharing these wonderful pictures. I remember when my two girls (now 13 & 15) were that age. I couldn't get enough of them!! Now they are typical teens who think I am very uncool! It's so beautiful to see how much you and your husband enjoy her every moment. You two were truly meant to be parents.

 
At 10:12 AM, Anonymous Lorna Yee said...

I made it to the second paragraph without tearing up. After that, well...

You captured Lucy's first year perfectly. Henry and I have enjoyed so much watching her grow. She is the smiliest, loveliest, sweetest baby anyone could ever hope for, and I'm glad she belongs to two of the most wonderful people we know!

 
At 10:19 AM, Blogger Allison the Meep said...

Happy Birthday, beautiful little Lucy! You've grown so much! All the love in the world to you.

 
At 11:38 AM, Blogger Jeanne said...

Happy birthday, Lucy! And Happy Birthday family of 3! Yay!

 
At 11:52 AM, Anonymous Crystal said...

She's gorgeous -- and so much personality in her face! Thanks for sharing your love -- it's wonderful to read.

 
At 12:22 PM, Blogger Angela said...

Happy Birthday, Lucy!

 
At 12:58 PM, Anonymous Becks said...

She's beautiful! :)

 
At 1:07 PM, Blogger FridaWrites said...

A happy birthday! She will love to read this blog post in several years.

 
At 1:29 PM, Blogger the professionals said...

beautiful, just beautiful

 
At 2:02 PM, Blogger Salty Lass said...

Oh my, she is adorable. And such a happy baby. Happy birthday, Lucy!

 
At 2:10 PM, Blogger Mary said...

Thanks so much for sharing pictures of your sweet baby girl, and your family together. I prayed for her!! It is lovely of you to share your joy. She is beautiful, and so are you. Being a mother is a great blessing. With love from a gluten-free Grandma, Mary

 
At 2:27 PM, Anonymous Anastasia said...

Aw, little bean! You're cuter than ever. Happy of first Birthday...there are so many more to come! xoxo Anastasia

 
At 2:46 PM, Blogger Anaquita said...

This was the best, and sweetest first birthday tribute I've ever seen. Thanks for sharing it with all of us. :) And happy birthday to the little. :D

 
At 2:47 PM, Blogger iheartnewyork said...

that was wonderful. she is so beautiful. happy birthday, lucy!

 
At 2:49 PM, Blogger Suzy Jaclyn said...

This brought tears to my eyes.

 
At 3:03 PM, Anonymous La Niña said...

Beautiful birthday girl- I have more books for you.

I remember when you were born. We brought sushi to the hospital. Pretty soon you'll be eating sushi with us...

Grow like a sunflower, always turning towards the sun.

Happy Oneness with the Universe!

 
At 4:18 PM, Blogger Vincci said...

Happy birthday Lucy! I hope one day you'll have a chance to read this entry and realize that you have one of the best and sweetest mothers out there.

 
At 4:34 PM, Blogger Cooking Confections said...

Shauna: What a beautiful and poignant post! Happy Birthday to your precious Little Bean. The joy in your heart is evident - enjoy each and every moment.

 
At 5:07 PM, OpenID satims said...

This is so beautiful and inspiring.

 
At 5:13 PM, Anonymous Zoe Mc Beth said...

Shauna and Danny,

I only want to say, thank you for sharing your passion for life, and your love with all of us. I live with Celiac...but it is indeed the best thing that has ever happened to me. You three are jewels...God Bless Little Bean...she is a light of love in this world...thank you for sharing that light with us. Best to you all...Love, Zoe

 
At 5:47 PM, Blogger cottagesweet said...

Happy Birthday to sweet Lucy! Lucy looks like her Daddy and sounds like she may have Mommy's personality.

 
At 7:23 PM, Blogger Dahlia said...

I can't wait to read Lucy's memoirs someday, about growing up in a house full of love with parents who adored her and each other, memories or food and laughter and being part of this big community. Happy birthday, Little Bean.i

 
At 9:37 PM, Anonymous alice said...

Happy Birthday Lu, you are so precious!

 
At 10:11 PM, Blogger terry said...

once again, you've brought tears to my eyes.

it amazes me that i've been reading you since before you met the chef, and now you're mama to a one-year-old! the time, it really does fly. thanks for sharing some of yours with us.

 
At 10:33 PM, Blogger Mama EZ said...

Happy Birthday Lucy Dear!
~From your little pal Hazel, and her Mama too!
* I just have to say it's amazing to me how these two are so similar, both so eager, so joyful, and unwilling to go to bed...oh and great at those adorable funny faces! ;)Looking forward to a playdate sometime!

 
At 11:23 PM, Anonymous Julie said...

Happy birthday sweet pea! Here's to much love and adventure in the many years to come.

 
At 11:30 PM, Blogger Tea said...

Oh dear Lucy—you are so lovely, and so very loved. Happy Birthday, happy every day. We are so lucky to watch you grow. xox

 
At 3:04 AM, Blogger kitchenmage said...

What great pictures. Lu will now be known in my head as Baby Jazz Hands! This is such a sweet piece, what a lucky trio you are to have each other.

 
At 9:40 AM, Anonymous katherine (the runner wife) said...

Happy belated birthday to your absolutely stunning Little Bean. Her vibrant smile, gleeful cheeks and sparkling eyes are a testament to the love and nourishment you and Danny give her. Wishing you all the best!

 
At 9:45 AM, Anonymous Jill said...

With my little gluten free babe turning one in a month in a half, I can't help but tear up reading about your adventures with the little buddha baby.
How can it be that it has been the hardest year of my life but the best at one time? They teach us soo much.
Can it really be a year already?
Happy birthday baby! She'll always be your baby.

 
At 5:29 PM, Anonymous Cinthia said...

Congratulations, Little Bean... so hilarious that she's a mix of both of her parents in personality and looks... I hope she has many, many, many more years of love, happiness and everything good a baby/child/person could have.

 
At 5:29 PM, Blogger Julana said...

Happy Birthday, Lucy!

 
At 6:37 PM, Blogger sarah ahearn bellemare said...

wow!

just came across your blog- happy birthday to your little one! I can't quite believe it, we happen to share a birthday AND a name! (almost)

i'm Sarah Marie Ahearn and i turned 32 on july 21st!!!

how funny!

happy birthday to her and cooking to you! xo!

 
At 7:28 PM, Blogger Alexandra@Chefspiration said...

Happy Birthday Little Bean! The photos are lovely and she is just adorable! How lucky she is to have parents like you two :)

 
At 8:59 PM, Blogger Ali said...

Beautiful photos of you three! Looks like your new place is serene and lush. Summers with toddlers are a joy! Happy first birthday Lucy! :)

-Ali, Tom, and the gang!

 
At 10:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I read but I do not comment. Until now...
Wow - LB is just so very cute! And - I cannot believe she is 1 already.

Michele in NZ

 
At 11:07 PM, Blogger katrinka said...

As always, great work. Thanks for putting into words how I'm feeling as our own little Lucy turns one next week. So many similarities (besides the name) - clapping, books, avocadoes, etc. What a year, chock full of simply amazing moments to be cherished forever!

 
At 3:42 AM, Anonymous Linda said...

Happy Birthday, Lucy, from Wales in the United Kingdom.
You have people who care about you all around the world thanks to your wonderful parents.
May you grow up to be as lovely as your Mum and Dad - You will have no end of blog material to look back on!

 
At 4:19 AM, Anonymous Sho said...

Happy Birthday Lucy. You look just like your daddy.

Shoshannah

 
At 5:52 AM, Blogger Nina said...

Happy birthday! I love how her sweet spirit is captured in these photographs! My littlest bean turns 8 this week. It goes by too fast. It seems like yesterday that I started following your blog and that was before you met the chef. I wish your family many yummy years together! xo

 
At 9:23 AM, Blogger Ann said...

Yay! Bean pictures! While we know you're being intentional about not turning this space into one big mommy blog, it's SO fun to see her. Congrats, and keep living, loving, enjoying...

 
At 9:46 AM, Anonymous Dolores said...

THANKS!!

And HAPPY BIRTHDAY LUCY!

 
At 2:25 PM, Blogger Miss G said...

I tried your flourless chocolate cake recipe and am posting about it tomorrow! :) It was good. Thanks so much.

Your precious daughter is beautiful! Kelly

 
At 8:22 PM, Blogger poo kah loo said...

wow. happy birthday lucy.

 
At 4:21 AM, Blogger Littles said...

Happy Birthday sweet Lucy girl!
It blows my mind to think that the love I feel for my son other mothers and fathers feel and have felt for their children since the start of man. This love can move mountains, it helps me feel connected as well.
She does look like her daddy but I see mamma in there too :)

 
At 12:51 PM, Anonymous Julia in London said...

I've been reading your blog for a while now(I came to it via your book, which I really enjoyed) but this is the first time I've posted.

I had a lot on my mind, or probably more accurately on my heart, today but then I read your post and it made me cry and made me smile and put a different complexion on the day. A more hopeful, richer one so thank you.

 
At 2:10 PM, Anonymous Kristin said...

Happy birthday to you mama. Those first months were not easy, and you are right to wonder at the beautiful creature in front of you. I love that you quoted Ani! I play that song over and over again, and it makes me cry every time.

 
At 6:23 PM, Blogger Deborah Dowd said...

It doesn't seem like it could have been a year, but time goes so fast when our little ones are growing up. It seems like yesterday and forever ago that my youngest (of six) turned one. Happy birthday to Lucy and happy baby to her blessed parents!

 
At 6:27 PM, Blogger stepmomof2 said...

What a beautiful post! Happy birthday Lucy! As I sit here with tears in my eyes, I see what I hope happens for me soon. I have Celiac disease and have been dealing with infertility too. Your story inspires and encourages me and I wish you guys all the best. You have a beautiful family!

 
At 7:12 PM, Anonymous pw said...

she is the most perfect little combination of you and danny. how marvelous :) and happy birthday to you little bean!

 
At 1:38 AM, Blogger fibrohaven said...

What a treat that on my first ever visit to your blog I was greeted by this post. I know nothing of you, your family, or little beans first year, and yet I looked at that first photo and my heart was touched by what I could tell was a wise, old soul smiling back at me.

Thank you for sharing her smile with me. Can't wait to read more of your blog.

 
At 6:46 AM, Blogger jacobithegreat said...

Absolutely beautiful.
I'm sure you know this, but your blog was mentioned in SELF's June issue. Pretty badass.

 
At 8:35 AM, Anonymous alison mcquade said...

happy birthday little bean and beautiful post shauna. gorgeous photos.

 
At 9:49 AM, Blogger Victoria Michelle Failla said...

Wow! You truly are a beautiful writer. It is so wonderful to see how happy you are and how in love you are with life. I can only hope that your love for life and ability to see the good in everything transfers over to the little one! Happy Birthday Munchkin!

 
At 2:42 PM, Blogger KristinKorb said...

Happy Birthday Lucy and congrats to you all. What a year for you! I think about you guys all the time. I was just up in Wisconsin, hanging with my brother and his kids. Kids are so amazing. I love the humor that they exhibit at such a young age. Give a call sometime. I miss you guys.

Love,
Kristin

 
At 3:17 PM, Blogger Lucy Meskill... said...

Happy Birthday Dear Lucy!
Happy Birthday to the Chef!

 
At 6:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy belated birthday, Little Bean!

vickiemarie

 
At 8:18 PM, Blogger Amy said...

Can you believe she has been in your lives for a year? What a wonderful little girl you have and what a terrific post.

 
At 6:06 AM, Anonymous Katherine said...

I'm currently expecting my first child, due at the beginning of October. Having been ambivalent about motherhood, and being a naturally low key kind of person, I've not really been at all 'cooey' during this time...clothes for babies aren't 'cute', they are small as far as I'm concerned! That said, as the end nears, I've started to think about what I'm looking forward to and one of the things is that my husband will be a father, something I think he'll excel at. This ode to Lucy has captured how I'm now hoping I'll feel at the one year mark. I hope you're capturing them in paper form as well as digital for her to look back at. She's a lucky Lou.

 
At 6:20 AM, Blogger Simply...Gluten-free said...

What a beauty - happy birthday to little Bean and I hope this next year is much easier.

 
At 9:57 AM, Blogger Diane said...

I'm so excited to find your blog. I have just started eating gluten-free this past weekend (don't have my test results back yet) and I swear I feel better already! You have so many resources that I am psyched about. thanks!

Diane

 
At 1:16 PM, Blogger Margaret said...

Hi! First time seeing your blog. That will be a lovely post to look back on and remember I'm in NC and a friend sent me this link. I have a three-year-old and a 7 month old. She is reacting horribly to gluten through my milk... as well as a few other things. I'm learning about this little food allergy sub-culture and about all my free time is spent trying to figure out how to make her healthy! I'd love your thoughts! I post about it more and more these days.

http://ecowahm.wordpress.com/2009/07/27/the-great-experiment/

 
At 10:32 PM, Blogger Stacie said...

I don't have kids...I chose not to, but really, looking at Little Bean gives me pause...she is really the cutest kid I think I have ever seen...Her little face is perfect...thanks for showing us your belly (vulnerablity) and fearlessness in living a gluten-free life, in living a life with love and sharing your Little Bean...I don't gush over kids..but for your's, I will make an exception.

 
At 6:36 AM, Anonymous Alex said...

Happy Birthday, Lucy!
They all look awesome. Wish you good luck!

 
At 10:19 AM, Blogger Heather said...

This was a wonderful post, and I just had to tell you that every time I open your blog that first picture of your Little Bean makes me smile and go "Awwwwwww!" It never gets old! She's so darn cute!

 
At 7:19 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Shauna- You and Danny have experienced the gamut of emotions this past year that many of us "well seasoned" parents have over much longer increments of time
and space. So you KNOW just what a TRUE blessing Little Bean is in every sense of the word. May your souls continue to dance, your hearts continue to overflow and your happiness continue to multiply for many more years. And may wonderful food always be one of the ties that bind!
Happiest of Birthdays to you all!
Bramble

 
At 2:03 PM, Anonymous Alta said...

I just cannot get enough of your writing, it's so musical, rhythmical.
And those pictures are gorgeous.
Happy Birthday!

 
At 7:20 AM, Blogger Janel said...

happiest of birthday wishes, little bean!

what a year it's been & here's hoping the rest of them are a much smoother ride...or at least ones filled with a lot less hospital visits!

happy birthday from holland,

janel

 
At 4:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Little One! We share same birthday! :)

 
At 10:03 PM, Blogger Srivalli said...

Shauna, wish your little one many such beautiful birthdays! Lucy looks so adorable and yes children bring so much more value into our lives!...thanks for sharing this with us...loved reading through your post!

 
At 10:30 PM, Blogger Papillion said...

Your daughter is gorgeous and your entry is lovely. We have a 9 month old, and we relate to the love you describe so vividly. Thank you for sharing! My eyes welled with tears of happiness for you all, because I understand how much joy this child brings into your lives. I, too, am more in love than I ever thought possible.

 
At 5:21 PM, Blogger Stefan, Sarah and Lukka said...

Happy Birthday Little Bean!

Heaps of blessings on your sweet family.

I hope you copied every word of that and write it in a letter to give to her when she's older. It brought me to tears and I'm a far off stranger! It was absolutely beautiful.
Thanks for sharing!

Sarah M

 

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