Thursday, October 30, 2008
And by the way, happiness is most certainly NOT making 100 miniature chocolate whoopie pies with orange frosting for tomorrow's class parties. That falls more into the category of "motherhood" or "martyrdom."
Monday, October 27, 2008
Last year I fretted over her upcoming transition to junior high, worrying about how she would deal with the responsibility of changing classes, more homework, increased peer pressure. How on earth would she ever remember her locker combination? Let's face it, organization has never been Bear's strong suit, and while some of the girls in her fifth grade class were concerned with fashion, boys, and cellphones, Bear was still perusing the American Girl doll catalog and playing dress-up with Bug. As she should. Regardless of what some parents seem to think, ten is still a little kid.
Over the summer, though, I watched the preteen begin to overshadow the little girl. Along with the obvious physical changes, came a heightened maturity, moodiness, and a sudden and complete aversion to waking up in the morning. There was dramatic sighing. There were requests to go to clothing stores. She shyly asked me to show her how to shave.
And then. THEN! She casually mentioned that she didn't really want any more American Girl doll stuff. Oh, she still planned to play with what she has... but this Christmas she'd rather have things like clothes, accessories, and video games. Bug declared her insane and WEIRD.
I've watched with equal parts amazement and pride as she's handled junior high with grace and maturity. Oh sure, we still have the occasional forgotten homework assignment, the inability to remember to bring home her gym clothes, and the exuberant bursts of silliness that reassure me that the little girl is not completely gone.
This past Friday she went to her first Sixth Grade Activity Night at the junior high. Seventh and eighth graders have dances in the cafeteria, while the sixth graders play games and sing karaoke in the gym. I helped her to choose an outfit, let her wear a tiny dab of lip color, and dropped her off with her friend. When I picked her up two hours later, she was laughing and glowing with happiness.
I miss the little girl, but I love the preteen. Isn't she beautiful?
Saturday, October 25, 2008
I am equal parts revolted and appalled.
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Later that day, it was nice to see her reaping one of the benefits of being the youngest: one-on-one Daddy time when her big sister was off at a sleepover.
I had such a good time watching them enjoy each other. Daddy Shortbread would turn to retrieve the ball, only to have an ebullient Bug tackle him from behind. Two-square isn't normally a full-contact sport, is it?
I hung out at the picnic table sipping Diet Pepsi and shooting pictures to look busy. No way was I playing ball with these two crazies.
Monday, October 20, 2008
Daddy Shortbread (gives me look that indicates I should drink my coffee and shut up)
Bug (piping up from the breakfast table): Um, let's not find out, OK?
Saturday, October 18, 2008
Thursday, October 16, 2008
I think Bear made this one in preschool. Notice the gouges in his side where his pipe cleaner legs have been repeatedly removed and repositioned. Lovely, no?
Bug made this one at a Halloween party when she was three. She was very, very insistent that he needed to be pink and orange. He looks like he's been hitting the sauce, doesn't he?
Because no WAY was I keeping a fluffball spider that had been marinating in the cat bowl all day. Ew.
To their credit, Bear and Bug were more amused with Maisy than upset about the spider.
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Nope, I just ran inside and got my camera because I knew this was coming:
Sunday, October 12, 2008
Still, Little Miss Cranky Pants and swarms of teeny gnats aside, it was a great afternoon.
Bear shows off her bag of Winter Banana apples:
Thursday, October 9, 2008
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
"Mom! Her paper is touching my FOOT!"
"She just ran past me and whapped me in the head on purpose!"
"Stop LOOKING at me!"
"Well, fine! Then I don't want to play with you EVER AGAIN."
"Aaaaaargh!" (door slam)
I guess even the best sibling relationships have their moments of dysfunction? For example, I can clearly remember being furious with Uncle Awesome in the base comissary when I was about eleven. I can't remember what his offense was, although I can assure you that it was annoying in the extreme. What I can remember is my hand literally ITCHING with the need to punch him. I also remember weighing the swift and terrible punishment my mother was sure to rain down on me versus the satisfaction of wiping the smirk off his face. So I guess I get it.
What it's hard to communicate to your eleven-year-old is that someday, years from now, you're going to think your little sister is really cool. Even though today she seems to be Satan.
Or convincing the eight-year-old that the condescending despot posing as her older sister will someday be her best friend.
Monday, October 6, 2008
You have to go to the campaign office and get them, I told her. Well, what in the heck were we waiting for? she wanted to know.
We had signs for the last election, and I have been meaning to pick some up, but never seem to think of it when I'm downtown near the Obama campaign office. The one time she reminded me when we were downtown, I had ice-cream in the back and couldn't stop.
The kid is a little bit relentless when she gets something into her head. Every day for the past week, she's asked if today is the day we will get our yard signs. No. Today? Well, then, how about today? It was when she elected to stay up to watch the vice-presidential debate with us (eight, the kid's eight!), that I knew I REALLY needed to get those signs.
Today was The Day. I picked both girls up from school. We drove downtown and crossed the square to the campaign office. The window was painted red, white, and blue with OBAMA/BIDEN in gigantic letters. We strode purposefully in and requested yard signs.
They're out of the fricking signs.
Worst. Mother. Ever.
Sunday, October 5, 2008
My BF and I wore our cute jeans and makeup. We got Starbucks lattes the size of our heads. We practically wet ourselves laughing on the drive up. It was HEAVEN.
As we got farther north, it was also peak foliage season. We were surrounded by this:
Driving into Kingfield, you follow this little river all the way to the mountain. Jen graciously pulled the van over every time I squealed and patiently let me shoot about ten billion pictures. She refrained from whining and complaining, unlike my usual van companions (who are darn lucky they're cute and biologically related to me sometimes).
We drove and gawked at the four million dollar "vacation homes" that dot the base of the mountain. Some of them have a ski lift that comes right to their back yard to whisk them up the mountain. (Who ARE these people? They can't all be neurologists from Boston.)
We lunched at a delightfully eclectic, girly cafe/flower shop, whose menu would have caused my kids to faint in horror. Nary a chicken finger, nor a french fry to be found, just wonderful salads, wraps, teas, and sparkling fruit juices. Delish. We lingered and chatted, keeping a wary eye on the wasp that had wandered inside and taken up residence on the window beside our table.
Finally, we drifted homeward, feeling the need to stop at both farm stand and garden center. The van smelled both earthy and delightfully spicy and fall-like from the pumpkins, squash, and pots of mums we shoehorned into the back.
Thursday, October 2, 2008
Band - A+
English - A
Reading - B
Social Studies - A
Math - A
Excel Science - A
Well, look at that. Hard work and organization does pay off. I could swear someone's been telling Bear that. Now, who was it? Hmmm... Oh, right. ME. (And possibly her father, too, but this is my blog, so I get most of the credit).