Mildred Elise turned 13 years old in August.  This baffles me, because I still feel about 12 years old some days, and here we are with a lovely daughter who is clearly no longer a baby.

She's as unlike me at 13 as possible.  I was gangly and awkward, hyper and loud.  Mildred is quiet and confident and thoughtful.  While I loved to read, I also climbed trees, scampered around like a madcap, and complained when my mother tried to teach me needlework, but Mildred has always been an old soul.  She curls on the couch, a pile of books on one side and a pile of yarn on the other, and teaches herself new knitting stitches while listening to The Lord of the Rings


She's often a wonder to me and such a joy.  I delight to see her grow and stretch into a young lady, one who retains the self she's always been but yet, somehow, different.  A familiar newness.

There is something odd and wonderful about watching one's children flourish in places one never lingered, to thrive in ways one never did.  I can't wait to see what the next years have in store.


My friend Talitha made Millie a birthday cape that floats and billows just like a cape should.  Thanks, Titi, for requesting pictures.  Millie usually dislikes being the subject of the lens, but she agreed readily for your sake.  (!)  Good form. 

Titi even included the perfect clasp for such a cape.

This is Millie, losing patience and going inside to eat birthday candy.

And this is Ezekiel, stealing her cape.


cadie said...

She's so beautiful :) As are all of your girls. I enjoyed reading your description of her.

I'm also happy to see her wearing that blue dress. A friend of mine gave that to me, but it fit neither Deirdre nor I well, so I was hoping one of your girls could use it. :)

Sarah said...

Mildred holds such a special place in my heart. It's so rare to see a girl so beautiful on the outside who is even more beautiful on the inside. I remember changing her diaper when she was a baby and holding her up in to the sky (naked) and yelling to a room full of uncles and aunts to "just look at this chubby baby!" Mildred cried and cried. Her eyes looked truly embarrassed. I don't think she liked showing off even then. She's still so modest and humble. Happy birthday, Millie!

Abigail said...

She loves it! I gave her that dress and a couple others from you as belated birthday gifts from the Purdys. :)

Millie IS a dear, and that's got to be about the kindest comment ever. I showed it to Millie and told her she should be happy to live up to it! Still hoping you all get a plump baby girl of your own. If that day comes, you can bet I'll lift her heavenward and exclaim in return. :)

Titi said...

So happy to see action shots! I was worried the grey would make it to dreary, but when the air catches its folds I know it was as fantastical as I was hoping it would be.

But I still need to see YOU in it!!

Abigail said...

Not dreary at all. Mystical? Yes, indeed.

I'll steal it from her and make her take snapshots of ME one of these days. I won't look nearly as good in it, though. :)