A Letter to My Daughter on her 9th Birthday

[We were on vacation earlier this week when I wrote this…and it didn’t post.]

My dear Sweet Pea,

I cannot believe that you are turning nine years old today! Each and every day, you amaze me with your curiosity, your joy, your boundless energy…and your tenacity. (Some would call it stubbornness.)

Last month you went to your first Daddy-Daughter dance. As you fussed with your hair and your wrist corsage, I caught a glimpse of an older you. It made feel wistful, proud…and old. Because you are my baby, and yet not A baby.

You possess a fashion sense that is uniquely you and influenced by no one – not even I can discourage you when you set your mind on an outfit. (Your great-grandma Flora would have approved of the furry leopard-print vest, by the way.)
Your heart and flair for dramatics are always on point. Even if you forget a step or two, by golly, you can NAIL that final pose.
When you were a baby, you had a twinkle in your bright shiny eyes.
One that still shines through in your happy moments.

You have your share of sadness and frustration, too…frustration when you can’t find the right words, frustration when we don’t “get” what you are asking, frustration when you can’t find the right socks or the right outfit or when there is nothing on the menu that you like and in the “why don’t I like more foods” and the “nobody understands me” moments.

And those are ok, as are the tears.

Because from all of it, you are learning who you are. And we are discovering who you are along with you.

You are the girl with the big heart.

The girl who loves her dog more than words can say and squeezes can be tolerated.

You are the girl who misses all the friends she has made, is excited about making new ones, and appreciates them all – even the girl you play with at recess but whose name you don’t know. (And until you do, no, I can’t invite her to your birthday party.)

You are the girl who feels deeply, who writes notes to her brother that start “I’m sorry if I’ve been a bad sister, I love you and I will try harder” and who makes Rainbow Loom bracelets to apologize and to show love and appreciation.

You are our baby girl, and will always be, (even when you have your own, but lets not rush ahead just yet.)

With all the change that you’ve been through in the past year, may this year be the best one yet. I can’t wait to see what lies ahead for you.

I love you, baby.

Happy Birthday.



  1. Gmom Phyl says

    Jenn, this is beautiful. You are a wizard with words.

  2. Happy Birthday Maddie Rose. Love you bunches..

  3. What a lovely post, Jenna! Question: was the Daddy Daughter Dance the one in Arlington? My daughter and I went for the third year in a row this year. 🙂

    • Aw, thank you! To answer your question: They went to the Daddy Daughter Dance in Frisco — next year I will know to buy a ticket and order the wrist corsage the minute they go on sale, we nearly missed out this year. I had no idea it would be so popular!!!

  4. this is such a charming way to write this! I love this idea and if you don’t mind, I may do the same idea! 🙂 you really are a beautiful writer and that pic of her with her Daddy…heart melting! what a lovely family you have… 🙂

    • Thank you SO much. You know we writers love to hear those words!
      I hope you use the idea, I’m sure I stole it from someone else….I feel pretty lucky. Even on the days that I’m annoyed as hell with them all….

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: