July 21, 2013

To Princess Ella

Dear Ella,

Oh, Princess... what can I say? You have been my Little Princess since before I ever even laid eyes on you. Nothing's changed. You still hold such a special place in my heart.

You are such a bright spot in my life, Ella. Your smile and laugh and absolutely dynamic spirit have changed me. You keep me young. You pull me out of myself. When I have needed a reminder that this world has good in it, you waltz in, talking absolute gibberish, shrugging your shoulders, smiling at everyone, and absolutely living up to your name-- Ella... Bright Torch. That is exactly what you are.

 I wanted to write you a special little message on your birthday today. I want to remind you that I love you so very much. I also want to tell you that my love for you will never change, and that you are a very strong, very special girl. I cannot wait to see who you grow up to be, my Princess Ella Jelly Bean.

Love always,
Aunt Kessi

 PS- Never ever feel left out because you don't have a "fancy" princess name like all of your cousins. It only seems that way because you were the original Princess. Princess Ella.


July 07, 2013

To My Slurpee Girl

Dear Madelyn (a.k.a.: Princess Slurpee Munchkin Head)

The day you were born began, for me, with enthusiasm, closely followed by the sound of metal bending into metal and the smell of airbag dust ingrained into my memory. Everything, it seemed, was trying to keep me from meeting you. But, we made it!

When I saw you, I knew it for sure, and I told you-- "We're going to be good friends."

And we have been, little one. Everyday, I see in you glimpses of the woman you will one day become. I see in you a sensitivity and compassion that far exceeds the kind I have seen even in mature adults. I see curiosity, and passion, and love, and intelligence. Slurpee, you are, indeed, so full of everything.

So today, as you turn the big number two-- even though you can't read this yet-- I want you to remember two things today, on your second birthday.

Number One: Never forget that you are a princess. You can be a sad princess, a happy princess, a serious princess, a goofy princess... whatever kind of princess you have to be, but never forget that you are royalty.

Number Two: Never forget that you are loved for who you are. You might grow up to do incredible things, you might decide to be a technological genius who designs smartphones (let's be real here... that's a good possibility.), you might become a pilot (it's not technically "holding" planes, but it's as close as you'll ever get), or a paleontologist (dinosaurs, 'nuff said)... but, whatever you decide to do, remember that I love you because you are Madelyn. Princess Slurpee Munchkin Head.

I will love you forever and ever,
Aunt Kessi

On Aprils

Ten years ago, I sat in the dining hall of a Christian camp. A man my father's age sat with me. It was April, and I had no idea... I had...