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4 posts from August 2009

August 20, 2009

I should be

HP7935-417 IMG_2970 overflowing with words, a river of emotion that can't be contained.  I should not be quiet, or let this occasion pass me by.  Yet, as Caitlin turned 11 today, I do not find myself terribly emotional or excited. Yes, she is older, but in some respects, has seemed so for months now.

C2 Could it be that the big "double-digit" birthday excitement has passed?  Or perhaps because she is not yet a teenager, just a "tween"?  It might also be that we are not moving anywhere (yet)?  She is starting middle school next week, but, in some respects, really just a change of grades.

Perhaps it is because the grandest discovery this year was a very quiet one.  I began to realize through several small discussions that Caitlin has a very strong sense of self.  Whether burying herself in books for hours on end, utilizing her vocal talents to pacify her adoring brother, or creating endless characters for her stories and plays, she is happy just being herself.  Not only is she happy, but satisfied with her capabilities, and I am terribly envious of that trait.

2006-52 IMG_0068 I remember fretting about a school project one night.  Silly, really, but that is what parents do best, right?  She had not asked for any help, though that is par with the course.  I had recently attended a school function, and was overwhelmed by the discussions of the other parents regarding school projects.  It seemed every other parent was way more involved in the project than I had deemed necessary.  The extent of the help I was allowed to give for any project was limited to purchasing paper for the printer, or okaying use of a household item for said project.

2006-554 I resolved to ensure that I was not failing her miserably 2005-120 as a parent, and confronted her.  Did she need help?  Had I somehow ignored or missed previous protests?  Had I totally and completely let her down by simply allowing her to make her own mistakes?

"No, mom, I am fine.  I have my work under control and I don't need your help.  Also, I am happy with my grades and how I am doing in school.  Really, I am."

It wasn't the first time she had said it, but certainly the Momandc-1most she ever said on the topic.  As I look back on the year, this calm is what impresses me most about her over the past year.  Happy birthday to you, Little C, and may you continue to bloom so extraordinarily wherever you are planted.

August 13, 2009

29 (again)!

IMG_1093Could I ask for a better beginning to the day?  Happy Birthday to me, indeed! 

IMG_1092

Dad, I promised

Atlantic City 011 you I would send an email regarding Caitlin's Birthday Wish List. I received this email from her the other  day, and figured I would just share with you on-line.   I thought it was a cute and entertaining list, and the sort of email I will really miss getting one day.  I should, however,  give credit where credit is due: she already mentioned wanting to put a "no presents, please" clause in her invitation for the eventual party.  Though since you want ideas, and there is no way we will cover all of these bases....here it is, direct from the horse's mouth, in all of its unedited glory:

1.  4th 39 clues book
2. a spy or detective kit
3. twilight movie on dvd
4. All new nancy drew books 5-8
5. things i've bugged you about and you happen to remember
6. my own cellphone( i don't know why i'm bothering to ask)
7. clothes i really really want
8. Gigantic bag or box of ghirardelli milk chocolate

9. Fun!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

2005-177 Brief notes on the above list:

  1. She loves this series! Plus, we really, really need more books!  She doesn't have enough!
  2. Believe it or not, she takes a mean fingerprint.  Anything that looks remotely serious will work.  Or perhaps a Sherlock Holmes style cloak, hat & magnifying glass.  Honestly.  Though, if pressed, she would probably say she would prefer something "Nancy" would wear...and I am clueless on River Heights fashions these days.
  3. We have watched this on "On Demand" twice, so suffice it to say, you would be saving us $$$ and we would be grateful.  Plus, if you get it at Target, there is a 3 disc special (!!!).  Undoubtedly, many exciting outtakes and deleted scenes of Edward looking pouty, and Bella with that terribly dazed (and also somewhat pouty) look on her face.  Nope, not my genre, but she sure does love it.
  4. What's another set of books in this house?  Plus, they will be read to pieces.  I am trying to tackle her Harry Potter series right now, and can't find all of the pages.  No joke.  The books are practically in bits, they have been pored over so many times (and carted around on various continents).
  5. Um, see #6.
  6. ROTFL, LM*you-know-what*O.  Enough said.
  7. I probably shouldn't comment here.  For the most part, she picks out decent stuff.  However, she is reaching the age where they seem to want clothing that doesn't have so much "cloth" in it.  She's not exactly there yet (heck, she found an outfit for MIDDLE SCHOOL at Gymboree last week), but I am guessing the time will arrive soon.  Oh, and the "I really, really want" part?  Your guess is as good as mine!  Translation?  Gift cards are great.
  8. Cause she can't go to Target and buy it with her allowance.  Oh, and she also can't drag me into the city to buy it from the source...oh, wait, she does both of those already.  What the heck, it's fun getting sweet treats for your birthday, right?  Especially dark chocolaty truffle kinds of treats..mmm...oh, wait, sorry, back to Caitlin...yes, she loves chocolate, any kind *without filling*.
  9. Guessing this one is more about the birthday party we still have to plan (yes, bad mama!).  I swear, Shannon, I will get that information to you ASAP!  

DPA675F-192  So, Dad, there is *the* list.  I hope it helps, and just in case Caitlin is reading this, um, give me a call before you buy any of the above...except #9, as any gift from you always includes that automatically!

Love,
Jen

August 04, 2009

Day Camp

now seems to require as much or more than regular camp.  Kelsey, a Daisy in first grade, won a spot in at the local Girl Scout camp.  The camp offers nine sessions at the incredibly affordable price of $75/week. The demand is obviously high, due to the low cost.  Since the camps are completely staffed by volunteers, each Scout is only allowed one place in one week each summer.IMG_2918

IMG_2917 Kelsey wanted to attend with a friend, and since the younger girls are allowed to 'buddy-up' if space allows, we put in for two different weeks, and crossed our fingers.  Each week has a different theme, but all sounded as they would offer them a grand time, and we were just hoping that she might get a spot. Imagine her happiness when she won a spot in the "Best of Broadway" week! 

We received two separate mailings from the unit leaders, and oodles of information regarding the plethora of items (everything labeled, of course) that needed to accompany them each day.  Note to self: must wash mess kit ASAP.  One swimsuit, towel, two bandanas, comfort kit, art supplies (yes, I labeled every marker), her portion of the dessert, lunch bag, mess kit, shorts, jeans, jacket, sneakers, extra underwear, and water bottle later, she was ready to go. Oh, and, yes, Nicholas was desperate to help her with anything food-related!

IMG_2920
She was a bit tired from the day, plus the commute (an hour plus round-trip), but that didn't stop her from practically taking over the making of dinner.  I was allowed to trim and tenderize the chicken cutlets, but she took it from there.  Peter had a meeting, so the four of us had a lovely dinner of Chicken Francaise and cucumber & cherry tomato salad on the patio.  The Girl Scout unit leaders had warned us that our camper might come home exhausted. If this is Kelsey without a drop of energy, wonder what she will tackle tomorrow night?IMG_2922 IMG_2921