It has only been nine months since Willa Gray Akins’ world was turned upside down as she traveled from her birth country of Uganda to the United States to join her new parents, Thomas Rhett and Lauren Akins. In addition to developing a taste for American cuisine and quickly adapting to her loving family’s fun, but unique lifestyle, three months after she arrived, Willa also got a baby sister, Ada James, last August.
A few months after that, in October, Willa celebrated her second birthday.
Of course, there have been numerous birthday parties, including her mother’s, plus Halloween, Christmas and other celebrations since we all got the chance to fall in love with Willa, so we feel pretty safe in saying that this little fireball knows how to party!
At the very least, she knows how to birthday party.
Willa’s Aunt Kasey, Thomas Rhett’s sister, celebrated her birthday over the weekend and there was — as you would expect — a cake with candles and the obligatory singing of “Happy Birthday To You.” Lauren’s mother shared a short video clip of the big sing-along on Instagram. With Ada James perched on one knee and Willa Gray on the other, Kacey listens as her family sings the song, including Willa, who pretty much sings every word. And then, on cue, the tot leans in and helps Kasey blow out the candles.
Meanwhile, baby Ada James seems completely perplexed by the entire affair.
Now, we know that a two-year-old has a decent vocabulary and could be speaking in short sentences, but to pretty much nail an entire song seems like a respectable accomplishment for any little one.
So, yay Willa and any other age two tot that has this skill down! Maybe in a few more months she’ll be entertaining us with “Be Our Guest.”
Willa, Ada and mom Lauren will be warming up for another round of “Happy Birthday To You” in March when Thomas celebrates his 28th birthday just days before he heads out for his “Life Changes Tour” on April 5. He did quietly give a scaled-down performance recently at a Nashville-area church’s “Night to Shine” prom for special needs youth.
It sure looks like Willa and Ada are learning much more from Thomas and Lauren than just how to sing the birthday song.