Monday, February 18, 2013

Sweet Sixteen

Sixteen years ago today, a most beautiful gift came into my life and I became a mom! Sixteen years old, time sure does flow like a relentless river... doesn't it?

Minutes after being born. :-)

Happy Birthday, Alyssa! You live life as "a planting of the Lord for the display of His splendor," I am blessed and proud to be your mama! ♥

My girl is...
A beautiful young lady with the most beautiful heart! She is a champion for hope and a voice for those who cannot speak out for themselves. She wants to make a difference in the world, by becoming a social worker or a journalist or a humanitarian aid worker or a teacher or a lawyer one day. She can't just yet make up her mind... maybe all of the above?!? :D

She is out to change the world, one step at a time! She encourages her peers to do the same, venturing into the inner-city to organize community dinners for under-privileged youth, going into the downtown core to distribute bagged lunches to the homeless, taking charge of the AIDs Care Campaign at her youth group.

She wrote a piece of prose about social justice and about having the courage to stand up to injustice and her piece wins the top Provincial Award and she brainstorms and researches ways on how to spend her $1,000 prize money, not for herself, but for fighting injustice.

Tonight, we will host a party to celebrate her Sweet Sixteen and this is what she wrote on the invitation...
As I celebrate my 16th birthday, I know that I am so blessed, and that many teens just like me will celebrate their 16th this year facing life on the street. 
It would really mean a lot to me if in lieu of gifts for myself, you would purchase something from in my honour, in order to help street youth through Covenant House Toronto. If you could print the card & let me know what you got, I'd love to know! :)
Covenant House Toronto is Canada's largest youth shelter, giving hope & opportunity to homeless youth. You can learn more about them at
Thank you so much!
Beautiful, right? She is adamant... nothing for herself! So... hubby and I, and our little man {he gathers up his allowance money}... we gather around the computer and we shower her with gifts, to honour her beautiful heart!

We browse and we click and we buy...

As I publish this blog post, my sweet sixteen celebrant is sleeping in as today is the Family Day holiday here... some much-needed beauty sleep after a few late nights! As we gather with family and friends tonight, we will celebrate this beautiful girl... and how God has enriched our lives because of how she lives her life!

Christmas 2012, almost 16!

Happy Birthday, my beautiful girl! I love you!!!
You are truly a gift to us from God... His generous legacy. May "God bless you and keep you, God smile on you and gift you, God look you full in the face and make you prosper. (Numbers 6:24-26)"
May God bless you with a restless discomfort about easy answers, half-truths and superficial relationships, so that you may seek truth boldly and love deep within your heart. 
May God bless you with holy anger at injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people, so that you may tirelessly work for justice, freedom, and peace among all people. 
May God bless you with the gift of tears to shed with those who suffer from pain, rejection, starvation, or the loss of all that they cherish, so that you may reach out your hand to comfort them and transform their pain into joy. 
May God bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you really CAN make a difference in this world, so that you are able, with God's grace, to do what others claim cannot be done.
~ Benedictine Blessing by Sr. Ruth Fox.
{Please pause the playlist on the sidebar of this blog as you watch this video.}

Related Readings... birthday tributes to my girl since this blog started:
~ 11 years old, 2008.
~ 12 years old, 2009.
~ 13 years old, 2010.
~ 14 years old, 2011.

Compassion is a command, an act of worship, a song of thanks to Him.
Do justice. Love mercy. Walk humbly with God!


  1. Happy Birthday, sweet girl!! May our Lord bless you in all that you do!


    1. Thanks for dropping by, Deborah! It's nice to *see* you around these parts. Hope your family is well & enjoying this wintry weather.