Yes, her birthday was almost a month ago but I figured I’d better it recorded before Lucy’s birthday takes over in a couple weeks.

I wrote all the stuff I love about her and posted her 13-year-old pictures on the big day back here, but here’s what actually happened:
Super healthy breakfast-of-her-choice followed by some gifts…

Her posse of girls came and surprised her before school with some beautiful cupcakes:
(Her friend Makenna made them “French” because they are both pining away to get to France some day.)
She blew out doughnut candles.
Love these girls so much. I couldn’t ask for better friends for my daughter.

They made her wear this stuff for part of the day at school:
That smile tells me she didn’t seem to mind…

And seriously, what is a birthday without the traditional candy bar birthday poster?
Claire looks pleased as punch about that, don’t you think?

That evening we did the traditional cake float (click here and here to find out why the heck we do this cake float thing…)

These next two pictures made me laugh:
They went from the above to the below lickety-split.
(It’s amazing how quick my kids will snap into shape when they know cake is on the line. They are suckers for sugar.)They had to shimmy over to the water so the breeze wouldn’t blow out the candles.
Obviously we were a little lazy about the float this year and we didn’t have much around to help us keep it above water. It got a tad wet but a hey, little chlorine never hurt anything.

We love having Josh help celebrate birthdays around here.
So there you have it: she’s a teenager. And we love her.

The end.

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  1. What a doll!!! I looked at her and her friends and thought, they are so happy, dressed modest, glow about them.. i hope in a few years i will have the same pic of my daughters with their friends!!

    for Q & A
    I am eagerly awaiting 'The entitlement trap' and because of Christmas coming up do you have a $ limit on how much you spend on your children. I heard on the radio last year that the average parent spends $300 per child at christmas.. do you think this is true?? PS, anyone else can respond to this 🙂

  2. What a super cute girl! My twins are in your brothers class at school for the 2nd year now and I have loved being a "sneaky" reader of your blog! Thanks!

  3. dresselfamily…the older they get the more you spend on them because their wants go from wanting matchbox cars to I pods and game systems! I would say for a teen $300 isn't unheard of. For my younger kids though we can do a nice Christmas for $100 or $150…that is me shopping the deals like crazy and buying some stuff at thrift stores or garage sales.

  4. She is full of beauty. Those french cupcakes are pretty cool! Happy Birthday to your girl. She sure is blessed to have such good friends and the family she's got.

  5. The report I have gotten from the jr. high boys is that she is the cutest and most fun girl in 8th grade. I couldn't agree more!
    Love that Elle! She is such a doll!

  6. If you ever make your blog into a book I want to be first in line to buy it!!!! So many great ideas and traditions!! What a blessing you are to your family…and them to you!!!! As it should be!!!

    Happy Birthday again Elle!!!! Love all your sweet girlfriends!!

  7. While we're asking Q&A's I'm wondering what music you allow your kids to listen to..pop music with a discussion on some songs or no pop music? I personally love it myself and my kids hear the kids bop version at school and the Just Dance DVD (which is so fun) had edited versions of songs that I'm not sure about…but I had "Baby Got Back" memorized as a teen and I knew what it meant, but it didn't affect me. I just like to dance!

  8. Happy Birthday Elle. I don't know you but I just know that you are as beautiful on the inside as you are on the outside. BTW, we have incorporated your traditional birthday candy poster into our family and my kids adore it. Thank you!

  9. i love elle's hair in the birthday post…how did you do it. she a such a beautiful girl, inside and out. u and ur husband must be very proud of her!

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