My sweet girl turned nine last month.
We waited until the back-to-school madness settled down to have a party. The party was at home, nothing too planned or complicated, just a cookout, scavenger hunt and cupcake decorating.
Oddly, their favorite activity was carrying the screen tent through the neighborhood, marching and singing as loudly as they could.
This was not an activity I planned for. No, this is only something that a dozen girls, hopped up on sugar and the glee of just playing together could dream up. It was perfect.
Instead of presents, Mojo requested that her friends bring supplies for the animal shelter.
The day after the party, we delivered them to the shelter.
When I asked my child later what her favorite part of her birthday was, it was not the American Girl stuff we showered her with. It was not the joyful frenzy of friend play (oh boy was it a frenzy!). It was taking the supplies to the shelter. Yes, my girl, she’s is growing up and her big and loving heart seems to be growing even bigger.