1. Your nickname is Ally because I liked the show Ally McBeal. It was a legal dramedy** series staring Calista Flockhart.
2. Alyssa means JOY in Hebrew (if my memory serves me right).
3. Alyssa Santamarina Santos was such a tongue twister so your first name became Alyssandra.
4. You're born on the 24th because I had to launch Share-a-Load*** first, give birth to you, then be well enough to go to the Sales Con two weeks after.
5. Your nickname Allybangbang (alibangbang in Filipino) means butterfly in English.
6. The theme for your first birthday was butterflies.
7. You were on a TV ad at 2 or 3 years old (your brothers too!) for iClub****.
8. You were scared of clowns, mascots or anyone else in costume as a toddler.
9. You never liked dolls. Too sissy for you.
10. You insisted on not having a 7th birthday party so you can travel instead. We went to Hong Kong that summer.
11. You've always been artistic - leaving notes, drawings, scribbles anywhere and everywhere.
12. All your Halloween costumes have been scary. And you chose every single one of them.
13. I dreamt of raising a girly girl daughter when I found out I was having you. But you're more Lara Croft than a Disney Princess, and I wouldn't have it any other way!
Happy 13th birthday, Allybangbang!!!! 💖💖💖
* Allybangbang: a stylized spelling of the Filipino word alibangbang which means butterfly
** Dramedy: Drama comedy, a television genre popular around the time you were born
*** Share-a-Load: a load sharing service by Globe Telecom, which by the way won an international award for service innovation
**** iClub: a kiddie club of SKYCable, the cable company I once worked for
About this post: Originally written as a birthday greeting to my daughter on Facebook.