Dear Little Sis,

You are turning 18 and I just want to take a few moments to celebrate who you are. Over the past 18 years of your life, you have grown into a truly amazing woman.

Your love is fierce and abundant. I could never understand how you made friends so easily and that's something I've always admired about you. You have this innate ability to make friends in whatever you do. It's miraculous. You're also insanely talented. In your 18 years, you've dabbled in so many things, each one showcasing a different aspect of yourself. From softball to swimming to color guard to singing to acting, you shine so bright.

I can't imagine life without you and I'm so happy that I've gotten to see you grow into the remarkable human you are today. You were the one who played house with me when we were kids. You are the one who gives tight never-ending hugs. You are the one who cranks the music so we can rock out at the top of our lungs in the car. You are my go to sidekick. Every minute of the 18 years I've known you have been incredible. I can only hope that your future years will be as full as the past.

Turning 18 is one of many milestones in your life, because you have finally been granted the title of "adult." You start a new chapter in your life bringing both highs and lows. 18 is exciting and wonderful and magical. On the other hand, being an adult is tough stuff and no one gives you a handbook. Just because you're an adult doesn't mean you are gifted with the knowledge of how everything will work out. So try different and new things, make mistakes, turn your life upside down. Whatever you do, make sure you stay true to who you are, because who you are is pretty special.

If you get stuck, I will be there. I want you to know that I'll be there for you every step of the way, just like you have been for me. I will be there with iced coffee and croissants to listen to all of your greatest adult moments, and I will be there with tissues and open arms to comfort all of the rough patches. This birthday marks the start of your adulthood, and I can't wait to see how special it will be.

Each year of your life has been a blessing to everyone you've met, and this year will be no different. You have and always will be the avocado to my toast, the frosting to my donut and the espresso to my latte. You are an essential part of my life. I hope your birthday is as miraculous as you are.

Love,

Big Sis

P.S. I hope this makes up for the fact that I haven't gotten you a birthday gift yet. Love you!