Growing up my family was always very affectionate. We still are. I hug and kiss them when I see them and we never leave each other without saying “I love you.” Naturally, when Harlan was born, I was very affectionate with her. I kissed her and hugged her often and always told her I loved her.

As she gets older {and is now starting to form opinions of her own} I see that my affection is rubbing off on her. The first thing she does when I get home is come up and give me a great big hug. She gives MacKay and I a kiss as soon as she wakes up in the morning. She is the most loving and affectionate little girl I know.

I tell her I love her as often as I can. I want her to know just how much I adore and cherish her. She will say it back almost all of the time and the words melt my heart. On Monday though, those three little words took on a whole new meaning.

Harlan and I were sitting on the couch relaxing when she tapped me on the shoulder to get my attention. Thinking that she was going to ask me for another snack or drink, I just looked at her. “Mama” she said trying to get my attention again. “Yes, Harlan,” I replied. “I love you,” she said softly. “I love you, too Har.” I told her with a huge grin.

This was the first time she has ever told me that. I am always the one to initiate it. This time, I didn’t have to. I don’t know if she really knows what it means, but at that moment I realized that she knows it’s a sign of affection. It was one of my proudest moments as a mother. She loves me. And with all of the hugs and kisses that shows me she loves me, she now wants to tell me too.

I love you too, Har.

{First photo taken by Andrea Rodman Photography. Last picture taken by Jenny Sherouse Photgraphy.}

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  1. I really just got goosebumps from reading that…I can’t wait until my little boy can say that. That’s the sweetest thing ever! And those pics…so beautiful and sweet!

  2. You are soooo right about those little three words!!! I melt when my girls say it to me followed by a kiss.. I can’t wait for my son to say it( 5 months now)!!

  3. Oh that is so sweet! I can’t wait until Carter can say I love you! I can only imagine how it melts your heart 🙂

  4. Isn’t that the BEST?! So sweet. I love watching Soleil nurture her babies and dolls (and even her water bottle???) with hugs and kisses and reassurance… it finally dawned on me one day that all that “cute” behaviour is a spot-on impersonation of me caring for her as a baby. There is nothing more satisfying than seeing proof that all of that love we express to them gets totally absorbed and reciprocated!

  5. so, so sweet. and nice that harlan will have this post to read herself one day and remember! today all my little guy has said to me is “outside,” “chalk” and “no.”

    he better be saving up his good material for after his nap!

  6. Awww, so sweet!Just wait until she says “You’re the best Mommy in the whole wide world” or you are out doing something together and she looks up at you and says “this is the best day ever”. How it melts our hearts. Always listen because what they say is usually pretty important:)

  7. OH GRACIOUS! I just found your blog and I love it here! Your hair is perfect, your pictures are perfect, and don’t even get me started on that dumpling of yours! Glad to have found you 🙂

  8. Harlan is so sweet! I used to be the one to initiate the “I love you’s” all the time with Aiden. But then once when he was about 25 months, he came up to me and said, “I love mommy!” and gave me a hug and kiss. Since then, he initiates it just as much as I do. And it’s so so sweet!