Jenna is our only grand daughter.

This July she turns thirteen.

She is still very girly,

but she is growing up fast and

now prefers a more sophisticated look.


Once upon a time, this little girl was a three-year-old princess. She woke up in the morning, got out of bed and clopped around the house with a tiara and high heels.


She has always loved art and animals. Cuddling with Daisy, a favorite past time.


Over the years, she and I have made memories including a visit to a corn maze and a rainbow cake that nearly flopped. Last year we planned a lemony tea party and ferried to Cumberland Island with her brother and boy cousins.

This year she wants to transform her bedroom from Tween to Teen.

She is growing up and wants to create a space that will reflect her emerging teenage self.


Jenna, whose middle name is Skye, favors natural themes now: landscape, a cactus pillow and wall print, framed sea coral, plants.


Giraffe and Cheetah have been relegated to the former playroom upstairs



Coming of Age, a kind of Bat Mitzvah

Jenna’s brother and cousin have passed the age of thirteen. I wrote about their reaching the age of the Jewish Bar Mitzvah here.  

Both Jenna and brother Patrick are intentional about their faith and have chosen Christian baptism. The blog post about it features a scene from the baptistry.

And like her brother, she has received a letter from Nana and Grandpa on her thirteenth birthday!

The Letter

Although the address is obsolete, the date is accurate, September 2005.



Over the years, I’ve written down a few things I’ve heard Jenna say, a sampling here:

2011 Mom, “I’d like to change my name to Autumn.”

2011 After a long car trip, “I’m so tired I feel like my toe is going to fall off.”

2014 “I don’t want to get a belly ring when I’m older. I don’t want a rusty belly button.”

2015  “Being a teacher is like swallowing a dictionary and a thesaurus.”

2017: Her mother was explaining to her brother that the word boisterous meant – bouncy, loud, wild. Jenna overheard and said “Notice the root word is ‘boy.’”

Like many young girls, Jenna is descriptive, observant, and speaks her mind. I hope she retains those traits through her teen years and beyond.


What do you remember about being thirteen?

Have you heard any clever or amusing sayings lately?