Dear Little Girl (to be named shortly),
We are ready. Not that we’re actually ready, but we’re as ready as we will ever be so we are recommending that you come to us NOW. We know you like it in heaven and that it is fairly comfortable in the womb but let me let you in on a few things in hopes of persuading you to leave that comfort and joining us ASAP.
REASON #1: You are loved. You are coming to a good family that loves each other and that loves you. You were created on purpose and will be coming to a family that really wants you. You have two parents who love each other and are doing their best to provide for you and your siblings. You are fortunate to have two older brothers as well as an older sister. They are all excited to meet you, play with you, and look after you. There is a lot they can teach you so when you come please pay attention. You also have an extended family of over 50 cousins, dozens of aunts and uncles, four grandparents, and even a couple of great-grandparents. They and their friends are all excited to welcome you into the world.
REASON #2: We are semi-prepared. We have been preparing for your arrival for some time. About two years ago daddy took a job in River Falls, Wisconsin as a teacher. It is his dream job and allows him to spend quality time with his children while earning enough money to provide for the family. We aren’t wealthy (i.e. have lots of money) but mom and dad work hard and will always take care of you.
We have a good place to put you when you come to us. We knew we would not have sufficient room in the townhouse we were renting last year, so around this time last year we bought a new (but older) house. It is in a great neighborhood, within walking distance of the elementary school, the middle school, and four city parks. We’re also close enough to the university that daddy can walk to work (meaning he has more time in the morning to eat breakfast with you). The house was a bit of a fixer-upper but we’ve worked really hard this last year and have completely redone the kitchen, dining room, and pantry, cleaned up and improved the yard (complete with tree house), and have made great head-way on another bedroom downstairs so that you’ll have more space in your room. We’re going to keep working hard so that our home will be comfortable for you.
REASON #3: Timing. We are a family that loves traditions. To that end we have worked hard to space birthdays so that each family member has their own time. Eli’s birthday is in August, Mom and Dad’s anniversary is in September, Daddy’s birthday is in October, Sharon’s birthday is in November, we celebrate the birth of Christ in December (and again in April), Spencer’s birthday is in January, and Mommy’s birthday is in March. So, you see, during the school year each month is covered except for February. You’ll need to come soon to get your own month.
Also, it’s cool to have memorable events surround your birth. Eli was born during the first day of Hurricane Katrina, a devastating storm. We just went through the longest and coldest winter I’ve ever experienced and a big storm hit this last week. Sounds like a good welcome to Wisconsin, right?
Daddy has arranged his schedule this semester so he can be home with you for a little while but that is contingent on you coming soon. I have guest speakers coming today and tomorrow and my students will be in schools (without my supervision) next week, so there’s your window. Take longer and you’ll have less dad time (I know that might be a disincentive, but pretend you like me, o.k.?).
Finally, Mom is uncomfortable. If you come soon she will still be uncomfortable because she will be taking care of you and sleeping little. We all know about this and have been mentally preparing ourselves. However, the anxiety of waiting and not knowing you outweighs our concern for the future, so please come.
A few other housekeeping items…
We have high expectations for you. In addition to being cute we expect you to learn quickly (especially about the eating and sleeping stuff) and to play well with us. When you get older we will teach you how to care for others, be responsible, and work hard. We value education in our family and believe that God gave us talents so that we can make a positive difference in the world.
Your name. You will be named after Lattie Mae Booth, your great-great grandmother. She made a real impact on our family as a “pioneer” who left her Texas roots to raise a family in Georgia, as a convert to the LDS faith, and as a mother to five children as well as her military community. You’ll take her middle name but we’re still undecided about your first name. As a “Booth” (like Daddy) you have an important heritage to pass on and a great responsibility to live up to your name. You are also a “Christensen” which carries even greater weight. You come from an amazing extended family (both Christensen and Barlow lines) and have Christ’s name in your name. FYI, front-runners for your first name are: Claire, Gracie, Emma, Julia, and Alice. If you have red hair you might be named Sarah and if by some miracle you are actually a boy then daddy gets his wish and you will be named Hyrum.
Daughter, we are so excited to meet you and want you to come soon (like today). Sincerely,
Mom, Dad, Eli, Sharon, Spencer and others