March 11, 2014

Thirteen


This girl had the audacity to turn 13 last Wednesday. For several days, okay, maybe weeks beforehand, I was feeling really, really sad about her birthday. I just can't believe that my baby is a teenager. After surviving that bumpy ride with Maddie, I was less than excited to be embarking on this ride again. But then I remembered two truths: a) Maddie turned out to be a pretty fantastic grown girl and b) No two children are alike.


The other day I found this that I had written about her years ago.

Emma age 5:

She is like no other little girl I have ever known. We all agree that she has an old soul. And smart? The Questions! Questions like "What's the last number?" "Where does the world end?" She wants to know things like "Can a person live without an arm?" "Are there people in the world that don't have a home?" She tells us things like "Nothing is more important than family" and when she asked at the age of 3 "Why does Daddy work?" and I jokingly replied "So, we can buy more toys", she informed me that she didn't need any more toys, she would rather have Daddy at home. At 5 years old she gets it. She's going through her things now so she can donate books, clothes and toys to children that need it more than she does. She is heartbroken at the thought of children that need. She collects empty food boxes from me and takes them to the basement where she pretends to deliver the "food" by scooter to the people who need it. Special. Hilarious. Creative. Brilliant. Affectionate. Talented. Caring. Beautiful. Strong. Imaginative. Loving. Appreciative.

We call her nature girl because she loves all things in nature and ever since she was able to walk, it takes us longer than most people to get anywhere because she has to explore everything on the way. Rocks, flowers, insects. She has a nature collection. In fact, she is a born collector. She also has a shiny things collection. And a gift wrapping collection filled with bits and pieces of all kinds of things and she loves to wrap gifts for us, always handmade, for no occasion at all but just for the sheer joy of watching us open them.

Emma Quote: "Don't question. Just love."


Emma age 13:

She is like no teenager I have ever known. She doesn't care about popular music, preferring classical and coffee house playlists. She isn't boy crazy, doesn't wear makeup, doesn't have a cell phone and rarely watches tv. She loves to read and spends the majority of her money on books. She loves crafting and is constantly making things for her costume chest or her dollhouse. She's an introvert. She loves quotes, vintage keys, her antique typewriter, animals, all things french, playing violin and ballet. She's an A student in the High Ability program at school. She NEVER asks for anything. She does her chores the first time she's asked, sometimes without being asked at all. She is kind and appreciative. She loves her parents and her sister. She has a great group of friends that I like to call the nerd herd. She doesn't care about popularity and avoids drama. She craves adventure. She loves to climb the tree with her adventure pack, cut up her apple with her Swiss Army knife and read a book. She is unabashedly unafraid to be exactly who she is and could care less what anyone thinks about it.

Emma quote: Mommy I'm going outside to have an adventure. Don't bother me for 3 hours.

So happy birthday my sweet girl. You make me proud every day.

30 comments:

  1. I feel like I have watched her grow up and she is just like her sweet mama!

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  2. Such a treat for you mama. What joy she must bring you. Happy Birthday Emma!

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  3. A very Happy Birthday to you Emma! Here's to many more for you!

    Jen, do we have the same daughter? I swear you the things you wrote about sounds just like you were writing about my Emma. :) We are lucky Moms.

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  4. Aw, precious words. Happy Birthday to your sweet girl! Boy do I know how no two are alike, mine could not be more different! My baby turns 12 on Friday and I am SAD! Can't imagine what I will be like next year!
    xo~Jill

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  5. What an amazing girl! Happy 13!!

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  6. You have one amazing girl there! Happy 13th to her!

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  7. I am 50 and I wish I could be her.

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  8. So, so beautiful, my eyes are misty. She sounds like such a very special girl. Happy Birthday to Emma :)


















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  9. I adore this little lady!
    She really is something special.
    Give her a hug from me and show her my picture if she forgets my face. :)

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  10. this is seriously the sweetest post... i love that you shared words about your girl at 5 and 13... i hope that emma had the happiest of birthdays... {and by the way... that birthday garland is gorgeous!!!} have a happy day, friend!

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  11. Oh what a beautiful post! I have 4 daughters of my own, my oldest being 10, and the teen years seem way too close for my comfort. One of my biggest prayers for my girls is that they will be confident in who they are. What a treasure of a daughter you have! Blessings to you momma!

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  12. her five-year-old person reminds me much of harper, in some ways. her beautiful 13-year-old soul? will mesh nicely with her future husband. they will bookend each other nicely! ;) happy birthday, emma, you lovely girl!

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  13. She is absolutely beautiful Jen, and she sounds like a perfect delight! Happy Birthday to Emma. I'm a mother of daughters, and I loved seeing my girls grow into the precious young women they have become. This makes me wish they were this age again!

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  14. She is wonderful! That is very unique in this world... She sounds amazing.

    Happy Birthday,
    Amy Jo

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  15. Lovely post. Happy Belated Birthday to a very special young lady!

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  16. What a sweet tribute to a truly lovely girl, in all ways. When I read about her, I think that I would be lucky if my Hope turned out anything like your Emma.

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  17. Your description of her at the age of 5 describes my 15 year old son. He still loves to ask the most profound and sometimes crazy questions. I don't quite know how his mind works at times. Sounds like your girl is doing just fine! Happy birthday to her! Tammy

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  18. my goodness she looks like you. they fly so quickly.

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  19. ***nerd herd*** I love it! Beautiful post for a beautiful child. She sure is something special! Happy 13, Em!

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  20. She has always been a special person, unique in every way. She is also a wonderful reflection of your parenting skills and the creative and loving home you and Jim provide. Happy birthday to Emma. We think of her often.

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  21. Such a beautiful post for your beautiful daughter. She sounds like someone my older daughter would love to be friends with. It is so hard to find girls their age who are not into boys, makeup and being popular.
    I hope you had a wonderful day celebrating her!

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  22. She sounds completely and utterly amazing. Congratulations to her and you, too. ~Angela~

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  23. What a beautiful blog. Very much enjoyed having a browse and seeing your lovely words and pics. I'll definitely be a regular visitor!

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  24. happy birthday wishes Emma ~ hope your special day was wonderful!

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  25. Jen
    What a beautiful post for your beautiful daughter!
    It is so refreshing to know that the world still has young ladies who are like Emma, it soothes me! You are indeed blessed to have created such a wonderful Miss (Dad too!). If one day Emma should venture up my way to attend college, I would l love to meet you both (St. Marys College in South Bend is minutes away! Please tell Emma HAPPY BIRTHDAY and I love everything about her character!! bless her heart and yours! Love,Lori Kolecki

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  27. Happy (belated) birthday Emma! What a blessing of a daughter you have, Jen. She reminds me a lot of me at her age (except that I cared too much about some silly things that I now know didn't matter.) Thankful that she is so comfortable in her own skin. I imagine she owes a lot of that confidence to her sweet family. :) Hope that these teen years are sweet ones too!

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  28. Now that is one incredible 13-year old girl! So refreshing to hear of a young lady like that (no makeup, not a TV watcher, is a book reader, not boy crazy, doesn't care what anyone thinks of her)...happy birthday to your beautiful daughter!

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