A year ago my sister, her husband, and their doula were in a Montreal hospital doing what they could do to birth my niece Frances. On the day before her first birthday, I can't help but swoon. Becoming an aunt has been pure joy. Frances is sweet and endearing with spunk and intelligence mixed in.
She's a traveler and has her own passport. (No signature required.) Lucky for me, she's made the trip to Maine several times in her first year of life.
Today Frances sits on her own, crawls, stands, and creeps. She has three teeth (maybe four by now) and a wavy mash of light brown hair. This year she was an owl for Halloween. Frances loves books, turns the pages by herself, and signs the word milk whenever the thought crosses her mind. She's an expressive, inquisitive little girl who starts her french speaking garderie any day now, so Eileen can enter language school.
I wonder what the next year will bring?
I am sure it's not surprising, but Frances is my one and only niece and I couldn't love her more. Happy birthday Frances-Doodle.