Updated: May 4, 2021
I have known Amber since she was approximately her son's age. She lived across the street from me and her older brother rode my bus. She was around 3 and I must have been about 8. In the mornings, I would walk to the bus stop and climb the wall along the side of the property, listen to music, or read books. Then, Amber started to come along.
Every day she would bound across the street with her curly red hair flying wild in the breeze and a new stuffed animal in her hand. Every day it was a different plush. She would tell me about her toy and just chat with me. On Valentine's day she brought me a Valentine which I saved on my desk for many years and unfortunately got lost in a move.
As she got older, she started to ride my bus as well. I had moved down the street so we didn't share a bus stop anymore but we did get to wait for the bus together at school. One day she ran up to me and said "I think you're all that and a bag of potato chips!" and then ran away giggling. I couldn't stop laughing about it. I think I even got her to sign my 6th grade yearbook because of that.
Years later, our parents met and began dating and were eventually married. She was the little sister I always hoped for and we had so much fun together. She would eat my extra meat at dinner and I helped her with art projects. I would wash the dishes and she would dry. We watched movies together and played Mario Party. Some of my favorite times were jumping waves in the ocean and playing outside in the snow with her. I was freezing cold and looking forward to sitting in front of the fire with hot chocolate but she loved to build snow-women so I just dealt with it.
Fast forward over 20 years and she is now a wonderful wife and mother (and aunt!). I feel so honored to help her capture these special memories with her beautiful little family! And Estella just adores her cousin, August. I think maybe he's starting to warming up to her a bit.