Happy 17th Birthday, Ashley!

One positive about being the youngest sibling, BY FAR (the next closest sibling to me in age is 11 years older) is that my nieces are somewhat close to my age.  Yesterday, my niece, Ashley, turned 17 years old.  I still can’t believe it!

I remember very vividly when she looked like this.  I believe this is her 2nd birthday, and from the looks of it, she is really enjoying that cake!  The funny thing about Ashley and her 2 sisters is that they all have different hair colors.  Nicole, the oldest has light blonde hair.  Ashley, as you can see, has dark brown hair.  And Alyssa, the youngest, has beautiful red hair.

Here we are rubbing each other’s shoulders after my brother Erik (in red) finished his first LA Marathon.  I think this picture was taken about 8 or 9 years ago.  It’s funny that my mom (left), my sister-in-law Stacey (middle), and I are all at least 15 pounds lighter now than when this picture was taken.  My mom is actually more like 30 pounds lighter.  She amazes me!  Stacey amazes me too with her Bar Method body!  She is in the best shape of her life.  I’m working on it….I have a wedding dress to look good in!

Ashley has always loved hanging out with the “older” girls, and I can specifically remember one instance when I was babysitting her and a couple of her friends.  I drove them to get some lunch at McDonalds, and I heard Ashley say to her friend, “Isn’t my aunt the coolest?”  That made me feel so special.  Especially as a 17 year old, myself.

And now Ashley is 17!  My how the time flies!

Ashley, you’ve grown into such a beautiful young lady!  I hope you had an amazing birthday!  Keep blessing people with your smile and sweet spirit.  Love you, girl!

~Aunt Joanna