Saturday, March 28, 2009


Rayna, when you were born sixteen years ago, I had no idea how much love I would feel for that little bundle of pink. When Grandma O, Grandpa George and I were at Baptist Hospital, awaiting your birth, never would I have believed that someone so little could capture my heart and soul as you did right from the first moment I laid eyes on you. I think you and I bonded from the moment I held you in my arms sixteen years ago on March 28th. I didn't know that a granddaughter could be so special, having never had a daughter of my own.

Everyone but me knew that the impending birth was to be a baby girl. As you know, I was hoping for you to be a boy. What joy I would have missed in life had you not been the one born on that day. It wasn't that I felt that I couldn't love a baby girl, but I had only had experiences with a big brother, two sons of my own and your big brother, Ryan (my grandson).

The name Rayna Monet fits you so well, Monet being the name of a famous French Impressionist artist. His paintings are beautiful and colorful and so are you. You are a creative and artistic individual. You certainly are colorful with the changes in hair coloring from red, pink, blue, black, and purple, just to name a few. Whatever the new color is to be in the future, I know it will look good even to your granny. I don't always appreciate or understand your individualism, but I know you are a sweet, wonderful young lady beneath all the exterior colorings.

I was a doting grandmother when you were a baby. I remember caring for you many days while your mom and dad worked. Some people even referred to you as being my shadow, since we were always together. At your Baptismal I stood in for your godmother and you were never more darling or cuter than that night dressed all in white for your baptism. Your mother and brother were also baptised that Easter Eve in Norman, OK.

You loved playing dress up and you were particularly fond of Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz. I bought you a Dorothy's costume and it transformed you into Dorothy!!!!. One evening we took you to a stage play at a local high school that was performing the Wizard of Oz. You were dressed as Dorothy and when one of the actors of the play asked you your name, you replied with no hesitation "Dorothy." There were other characters that you dressed up as, such as, Cinderella, Snow White, Pocahontas, cheerleader, bride, gymnast, and many others. We had all the costumes and you became that character when you were dressed in that costume. We also loved seeing you in your Easter clothing, hat included (what a little doll).

When you were just a toddler, the Murrah Building here in Oklahoma City, was blown up by Timothy McVeigh, and your neighbor across the street, PJ Allen, was one of the toddlers in the day-care center that day. We were all saddened that horrific day. We have watched PJ mature into a handsome, young man and he is doing well. You were the same age as he was on that day and I am so thankful that you were not in that building and had to suffer as PJ did for several years after the bombing.

Another remembrance I have is when you baked in your Easy Bake Oven and you served your Grandpa and me cake and cookies that you felt so proud having baked them yourself. We had tea parties served in the little tea cups and saucers, really we know it was a soft drink and not tea.

You love all animals, especially your dog, Luke, and your horse, Bud. We were all extremely proud of you when you took horseback riding lessons and excelled enough to perform in the junior rodeo. Some of your first birthday parties were at Ponyland and you and your guests had so much fun riding the various horses.

You have become a very good volleyball player and seem to enjoy the game and being with your teammates very much. You played some soccer but never seemed to enjoy it as much as you do volleyball. I love to see your enthusiasm and enjoyment the second you get on the court.

What a beautiful young lady you have grown up to be. Today as you celebrate your "Sweet Sixteen" birthday, I want to tell you how very much I love you. Happy Birthday to one of the "Joys In My Life."

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