Thanks to her I've been a mother for ten years and have learned and loved more than I ever thought possible a decade ago.
In my usual way of honoring the kids' birthdays, here are ten things I love about Ma Fille.
1) In almost every single photo of her from birth to now, she is smiling. I love her smile.
2) She is a Daddy's girl.
3) This year has seen her really come out of her shell at school; speaking up in class, being 'scribe' and writing on the board, making strong friendships and navigating girldom.
4) She loves baking and does so regularly on her own even baking the oatmeal raisin cookies and coconut macaroons she took to school to share.
5) She's on the final Harry Potter book.
6) She fell off a horse and was terrified but got back on the same day anyway. Then she rode the same horse again with confidence and elegance even though she was scared. And now she carries herself perfectly; knowing her strength and respecting that of the animal.
7) Her French is beautiful, fluent and nuanced.
8) She wakes up early just to read. I often find her engrossed in a book before school and Saturday cartoons.
9) She's only just started to think that all boys, and by this I mean only one boy and only because she thinks he's smart, aren't gross and stinky. Benefits of younger brothers.
10) She is lovely and confident and witty; a breath of fresh, giggly air in the life of our family.