The day Ashley was born my mom and nick waited at the hospital with us all day. We played cards, listened to music, and basically just waited around. At some point Mom and Nick left to go get lunch and bring me a couple stuffed animals, but for the most part they were there all day. They would kick Nick out of the room when they were checking certain things, but any time he could be there he was.
From the minute he held her the very first time they were instantly bonded. You could tell just by the way he held her and looked at her that they were going to be very close, and that they already loved each other. Ashley has always been very comfortable with Nick, and from the beginning has loved to have him carry her, let her ride on his shoulders, etc. One of the first times Ashley smiled was at Nick, and is a story you might hear Nick tell often. When Ashley was only a few weeks old Nick and I were playing with her on one of the beds upstairs at my parent's house. Nick says to Ashley "Lets have a staring contest." So they start staring at each other and pretty soon Ashley looked away. Nick looks at her and says "I win," and Ashley started crying. So Nick quickly says "Okay you win" and Ashley instantly stops crying and looks up at him smiling. Yep she had him wrapped around her finger from the beginning.
With Ashley's love for her uncle being so strong she never wants to upset him or dissappoint him. If he asks her not to do something and she thinks he is mad she will just cry and cry until he tells her he isn't mad at her, or that he forgives her. With this he is also able to get her to mind way easier than some of us. If I want her to finish eating it can be a battle at times, but if he tells her she does it. He will discipline her if needed, and in a way that is agreed upon and completely appropriate. He knows if he puts her in time out for something that when it is over they need to talk about it and hug etc. He won't discipline her and then walk out of the room. He stays right there and sees it out.
Nick also prides himself in picking out gifts for Ashley that she will love and enjoy. For her first birthday he got her a swing that hooked to a pull up bar that hung in our kitchen. So even when we couldn't be outside she could sit in and swing and swing. This was awesome because she loved to swing, but by that point her baby swing wasn't big enough, and we couldn't always be outside.
Their relationship has grown a great deal over the years, and they are still very close. They love each other very much and have a strong relationship that will last a lifetime. I am so grateful to have such amazing people in my family so that Ashley can have this type of relationship and these types of role models in her life.
So with that being said please take a minute to look at the pictures and admire their strong bond...
Getting ready to be wheeled into the operating room.
This is one of my favorite pictures!
They just seem so content with each other.
Yep still holding her once we got home from the hospital.
Just hanging out watching a movie, look how amazed she is by him!
This is the same day they had the staring contest.
Tickling little baby feet.
Look at the love.
Riding on Uncle Nick's shoulders at the pumpkin patch.
Just hanging out
Everyone must love sitting on Uncle Nick's lap.
Ashley is enjoying her brand new swing Uncle Nick and Katie got her.
Yep he even does hair! Now that's a good uncle.
Uncle Nick, Ashley, and Mommy at the Royal's game.
Ashley helps Uncle Nick blow out his candles on the cake she helped make him.
Just look at the two of them smiling at each other.
Who do you think is going to win?
Ashley's 4th birthday party.
You can tell how much they love each other just by looking at the pictures, and they are both truly blessed to have one another.