Monday, November 16, 2009

Coming of Age

Wow, has this past week been about the most fun ever! Hannah turned 13 on Wednesday, the day that Sean and I were scheduled to leave town. He was speaking in Fort Lauderdale on Thursday and I had purchased my ticket months ago in anticipation of joining.

Secretly, we planned to take Hannah along with us as a surprise birthday present. It's been hard knowing for months and not sharing the excitement. We even had her pack her bags for her friend's house. Once all of the other kids were dropped off, we pulled the van over and got out so that she could open her gift. It was her plane ticket and letters from Sean and I. She was shocked, to say the least. We made it to the airport just in time to board. So fun!!

Hannah's first flight. Playing Pass the Pigs.

While Sean was working at the Conference, Hannah and I worked through Passport to Purity. We giggled a lot, as well as had some deep, honest conversations. The Lord was good to provide us with such a special get-away to have these conversations. No pressures, no interruptions, no time constraints. It was perfect.

Florida sunset.

More than anything, we wanted Hannah to know how much we love and trust her. It's been our privilege to see her growing into the young woman that God has called her to be. We talked a lot about what life was like when it was just the three of us in our little apartment. Her daddy couldn't wait to get home to see her every afternoon. And I could not have asked for a better companion to pass the days.

At the completion of Passport to Purity, we met up with Sean for dinner at an Italian restaurant where he presented her with a pearl ring. *sniff*

The last two days we spent sightseeing around Fort Lauderdale and enjoying the incredible weather. I kept having to pinch myself.

The largest cruise ship in the world came to dock while we were there. We could see it from our hotel balcony.

This was the hotel pool. This is the kind of hotel that corporations pay to have people stay in- a far cry from our usual Residence Inn.

Hannah and I took this water taxi around and saw some insanely large yahts and homes owned by famous people.

At the beach.

Our last lunch by the ocean.

I could not have asked for a better way to celebrate coming into the teenage years. It's new territory for all of us. I don't doubt that we will have some bumps along the way, but I'm certain that God's Word will guide us through as well as a mutual respect and love for one another.

I walked away from this weekend more in love with Hannah than ever. She is a beautiful, determined, independent and Godly young woman. I'm truly blessed to be her mom.


Duckygirl said...

That sounds like such a wonderful sweet time!! I'm so happy for you that you got that time away, she'll remember that for a long time I'm sure!


JenniferLayne said...

Oh, I just LOVE this...Hannah is blessed to have you two.

Tisha said...

Oh, I am crying reading this. What a wonderful weekend. You are an amazing Mom!!

Alaina said...

And she is blessed to have you for a mom! What a wonderful surprise and a beautiful post!

Heather L. said...

Thanks for posting all these pictures! It was so fun to read about your trip. It sounds like it was a really great time. So happy for you!!!

Tara said...

Happy Birthday, Hannah! I look forward to the day when I can share my own purity ring with my daughter. Being your daughter's (and other children's) health educator will be something you will never regret.

Brooke said...

Wow! What a fairy tale birthday experience. That was an incredibly awesome way to bless your daughter :)

mom24 said...

Wow! This sounds like the most awesome time and a great way to celebrate her entrance into the teenage years! So very sweet.....

Mary@notbefore7 said...

What a wonderful time! That is an amazing surprise!

I have heard that passport to purity is a wonderful weekend to spend wiht your daughter. Sounds like it worked well for your family too. I think we'll keep it in the back of our minds.

The teenage years "seem" so far right now.
We toss around the idea of the purity ring...if you don't mind me asking..what exactly was presented to her for the idea of the ring? Is it a promise to her? by her?