I always tell you to stop growing up, but I have to admit, watching you grow and become such a fun, talented, kind and loving human has been the highlight of my life. This year I went back and printed a picture from each of your birthdays. Seeing your sweet little self with the high pitched voice, bobbed haircut, and the excited and sweet personality just melted my heart. You have always been good, caring and adventurous down to your very core.
You are still a bookworm. When asked about your favorite book you say, “Whatever I’m reading at the moment.” We are reading Hunger Games together right now and I love getting lost in the world of Katniss, Peeta and Gale with you. You are also becoming quite an accomplished writer and you are taking part in the NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) with a goal to write 10,000 words.
You love to babysit and you quickly become parent’s favorite sitter because of a little trick I taught you. You always clean up the kitchen and all the toys before the parents get home. One mom recently told me you’d even ran the dishwasher and she was in heaven when she came home to a clean house and clean dishes 🙂
All the money you are earning babysitting is going toward your class trip to Washington DC in May. So far you have earned almost $1000!! You’ve babysat, sold shave ice, and hosted two summer craft camps. You have a Thanksgiving and Christmas craft camp in the works as well.
You remain an animal lover. You love your Geckos, Artemis and Cyclone. You have to hand feed Artemis her worms off the end of a spoon because she won’t eat them off the ground. You also feed them crickets. That is not your favorite job, but you do it anyway because you love them. You know all the ins and outs of their personalities and make sure to hold them each day. I often find you watching TV or eating a snack with two geckos crawling on your shoulders. Chippy also never feels neglected as you give her a little morning treat and a love before you leave for school. You always make Chippy little treat boxes where treats are hidden inside part of a toilet paper roll. She goes NUTS trying to get the treats out and we all get a good laugh.
You are a 4.0 student at school. Language arts, band, and science are still your favorites. Your band is getting so good! It’s been really fun to watch you progress from your first 6th grade concert where we wanted to cover our ears, to this last concert which was really enjoyable to listen to! Your piano playing also just gets better and better. Although often these days your fingers will ache and you’ll have to stop practicing. We don’t know why they do that!
Your favorite TV show of late is the Flash. And your favorite movie of the year was Wonder Woman. Girl Power forever!!
One special memory from this year: Grandma came out to babysit you kids while Dad and I went to Aspen. One day while she was here she went and picked up some pizzas and brought them to Middle School lunch and ate with your and your friends. I think you both really loved spending that fun time together.
Growing up is not easy to do. There are always going to be bumps in the road. But, I want you to know that I’m here for you through it all. I read something recently from an Instagram friend about making mistakes. It said that we should call them “lessons,” not “mistakes.” How we react and respond to our mistakes and hard times in life is what defines your character. Not the mistake itself. I really love this perspective. Allow yourself opportunities to learn and grow and don’t get caught up in perfection. It doesn’t exist. Life is a beautiful, messy thing and we are in it together! I LOVE YOU THE MOST! And that will never change.
The birthday girl had to wait until like 5pm to open her presents! She got blue hair shampoo that she is super excited about, a Violin, complete with a case and a stand for her AG dolls. She also got an awesome Harry Potter shirt that says, “Just a city girl, living in a Muggle world. She took the Hogwarts train going anywhere,” thus combining her love for Harry Potter with her love of “Don’t stop Believin’ that she played in band last year. She also got this awesome letter board:
Halle’s birthday party this year was super fun. We went to Flatiron’s mall and had a mall scavenger hunt. I found an app called GooseChase where you could create your own photo/video scavenger hunt. It was cool because it showed a feed of what other teams were accomplishing, had a leaderboard and allowed the teams to come up with their own team name and team picture. The girls had a blast running around snapping funny pictures and taking funny videos of each other. I had a blast wandering through all the Christmas stuff at Crate and Barrel and checking in on them via the app.
I gave the girls $10 to spend on whatever they wanted. We all ended up back at Claire’s after the scavenger hunt was over and they all came away with cute jewelry and beanie boos.
We ate orange chicken, egg rolls, and chow mein noodles at the food court for dinner and then headed to our house to watch the Princess Bride and have mint chocolate chip brownies.