Twelve is a big birthday. In our house, it is when a girl can begin wearing high heels and some make-up (mascara, blush and colored lip gloss). Those steps are huge, but they are just a symbol of the fact that she is entering young womanhood.
Our Eliza also got to go with her dad to the fanciest restaurant in the area. It sits atop a lakeside resort and looks out upon one of the prettiest lakes in the world. Really. They went right at sunset so got to enjoy the sun setting over that beautiful lake. It is kind of hoity-toity, but is an absolute experience--a once in lifetime kind of dining event. As part of that dinner, she was offered (and accepted) a very special ring from her father.
It came with a promise and a commitment.
|We looked for a long time for the right ring, finally finding it at an antique store.|
Another milestone that comes with the twelfth birthday is her graduating from primary and joining Young Women's. (This is our church's program for girls from ages 12-18.) Eliza has looked forward to this event for a long time. When the girls begin attending Young Women's, they get to participate in a fireside called New Beginnings. Part of its purpose is to welcome the girls who will be turning twelve that year. The way they had us introduce our daughters to the group was with the use of a flower. Each parent brought a flower and explained how that flower represented their daughter. The table was full of big, showy flowers like sunflowers and tiger lily's. Our girl is in no way flashy and does not demand attention.
(This is not to degrade those other girls or their big personalities. We need all types and I'm sure my mother would have picked something flamboyant for me, too!)
Eliza is a buttercup.
She was born in March which is right when the buttercups begin blooming. It is always the first flower of the year in our area. It is a small and unassuming flower, but the bright yellow color, surrounded by the browns of the deadening winter packs a serious punch. Our girl is the same way. She is quiet and doesn't demand a lot of attention, but she has a strength of spirit that will surprise and delight you.
After a long, cold winter, the sight of that reliable and gentle buttercup brings a peace and comfort that spring is on its way. Eliza is a low-intensity child (unlike most of her siblings). She is not demanding or self-absorbed. Most of the time, Eliza is the one who brings peace to our family--even when she had nothing to do with the contention. Her bloom is reliably bright and comforting.
We are blessed to have this buttercup in our home.
In addition to the other amazing birthday treasures, she got to go the temple with the youth group for the first time. It was a wonderful experience and was a perfect way to start her day. As soon as she left, she wanted to know when she could go back. Yes, my darling girl. That is how we all feel about the temple. We'll go as often as we can.
Happy Birthday, Eliza.
You are a most precious gift to your family.