Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Birthdays, Last Days and Dog Days.

It could be a blessing or a curse that I'm updating the blog this evening. Ella is now seven years old, tomorrow is her last day of school and the dog days of summer are waiting for us to embrace each and every one of them with sunscreen, dirty feet and insect repellent. 

Let's face it: I'm melancholy. 

Today, she came home with her writing and illustration journal she has worked so hard on all year. It is a perfect time capsule of her life since September of 2015. I may not have been blogging as regularly but she certainly was, in her first grade way. The entries and illustrations show me what her weekends meant to her, what she enjoyed, what adventures we experienced as a threesome. It reminds me how far she has come in one unbelievably quick school year. Her journal is way better than anything I could have done.

Time. I get it - it moves fast. I was warned. Over the course of the last few weeks, I've actually yelled at Time, like it is some tangible soul lurking in my house. "Just stop, would you?!" "Slow the h*ll down for a week?!" As a parent, the fast movement of time is a difficult hurdle for me. Is it why I try to plan adventures, to seize the moment even if it was a long day at the office, to run through the sprinkler fully clothed because...well because it's just water, and why not?!

I see the beginnings of the young lady Ella will be as her big girl teeth are moving in and her legs seem to grow an inch a day.

 Her confidence is growing too.

She has neighbor friends and FCC friends and school friends and Daisy Troop friends, all of whom I thank our lucky stars for every day.

Watching her sleep is the best and Larry and I both do it a LOT. (Don't judge) Without fail, I am transported back to our first two weeks together in China. She is still very much that rosy-cheeked Guan Man Li.

Up until this past week, she was still trucking around on her bike with training wheels showing no signs of wanting to lose them. I was that kid, too. Dang, I was terrified. We took her on a huge Slow Roll through the neighborhood with about 100 of our other friends.
 She was a mad woman. We couldn't keep up and she could have cared less.
 And then her one training wheel flew off, she gracefully fell to the curb and the entire entourage stopped to make sure she was OK. There wasn't one tear. We had to bow out of the remainder of the ride. As of yesterday, she is trying to get the hang of it without training wheels. She's terrified but once she gets this, I trust there will be no stopping her.

Photographing her is my favorite. She is ridiculously uncooperative most of the time.

For months, she has had the most amazingly strong baby tooth in the front. It defied all dental textbooks. She was a snaggletooth for a solid two months until Sunday night. Her grandparents handed her a $5 bill and so did we. Holy Toledo are we glad that thing is out!

 She is my helper - in the yard, in the kitchen and now with pool maintenance. Just tonight, she spent 30 minutes skimming the cottonwood and bugs out of her little oasis.
On Thursday, she will perform in her second piano recital under the wing of Miss Gail. I am delighted she has hit the one-year mark with piano lessons. She likes playing and has a keen ear. It also helps that she enjoys Miss Gail (and her daughter Ellie), too. Ella may not be running on a soccer field or balancing on the balance beam, but she's finding her groove beautifully.

Here's to another amazing twirl around the sun, celebrating Straight A's through the entire school year and going to bed exhausted with the smell of summer around us.


PS: I blame Time for not getting this blog post up before tonight :)

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