Thursday, June 5, 2014

a letter for the end of second grade

Dear Julianna,

You're eight years old and it seems like you're both 18 months and 18 years at the same time. You're 4'6" tall and you wear mostly size 10 clothes. It won't be long before you're as tall as I am.

You're about to finish up your second grade year and to say it has been a good one would be a bit of an understatement. You've had a phenomenal school year. You've gotten all 4's and all S's on your report cards.  You've taken gymnastics and played softball. You wear glasses during school all the time now since your vision has gotten so much worse. I'm not afraid to tell you that we expected that to happen since you inherited both your dad and my poor vision.

You're asking for more and more independence. For instance, you like to ride your bike down the street and visit the neighbors on your own. You will often approach the counter by yourself in a restaurant and ask for whatever it is you need.  You make phone calls on your own occasionally.  Sometimes you now write "Julie" at the top of your school papers.

You hate to have your picture taken but you love a chance to dress up and wear lip gloss. You love to sing but you're self-conscious of your voice. You have mood swings and sometimes give us the silent treatment for a bit.  You still have a sweet tooth.  You may have a touch of asthma and have been on and off with a daily inhaler while we try to figure it out. It's nothing that bothers you at all but we want to make sure that if you get sick then you can get well again as quickly as the rest of us.

The way that you've seized and taken ownership of softball and developed a love for something you're pretty darn good at has made me extremely proud. I see a few of the other girls pout when they strike out and you rarely do that. You know there will be another chance at bat and you know that it's likely you'll have a good hit.  I'm so impressed with your attitude on the field.

While you've come to really enjoy sports this year, you're also learning to knit, make friendship bracelets, make loom bracelets and braid hair. You have changed your favorite color to pink and you love to have your nails painted.

I do wish that eager and enthusiastic attitude would sometimes transfer over at home though. You often bully your little brother. You tell him that mom's inside calling him just to get him to leave you alone for a minute. I can't say that I don't understand or greatly empathize because I've definitely been there. Little siblings can be so annoying. I just wish you would take the high road a bit more often. Stop racing him to be first at EVERYTHING. We know you'll win. You're almost four years older than he is. Stop telling him he's always wrong. You naturally know more than he does. You're almost four years older than he is. Do more of the, "Can I show you how to...?" and "Do you want me to help you...?"  That's what we hope and expect of you, Big Sister.

So while it seems like just last week that we were standing in Nanna and Pap's driveway when you looked up at the crows and said, "CAWWW, CAAWWW!" for the first time, I know it wasn't. It's been eight years and before we know it, that day will have passed decades ago but I'm enjoying this time with you. You've brought tons of smiles to my face and happiness to my heart. I'm so proud of your second grade year. I'm so honored to be such a sweet girl's mom.

Love you bunches, Doodlebug!


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