Monday, March 26, 2012
Clare at 9
For the past couple of months, every picture I've seen of Clare makes me pause. She just looks so...old. I've been telling myself it's her newly grown out hair, or maybe the braces, but Tim and I both know the cold, hard truth: she's growing up.
Crystal recently posted a quote, and the first part of it really struck me in relation to Clare: “The day the child realizes that all adults are imperfect, he becomes an adolescent; the day he forgives them, he becomes an adult; the day he forgives himself, he becomes wise.” (Alden Nowlan) Clare is loved and revered by teachers, parents and (good) kids alike for her sweet disposition, beautiful manners, and genuine respect for people. I really cannot express enough how proud we are of her. But I do think that some adolescent attitude is starting to seep in to her world view. I know it's inevitable, and probably even important. I'm also fairly sure that whatever grief she gives us will be minimal compared to what many parents experience. I'm trying to think of it as a way of keeping me honest, and taking opportunities for open, even-keeled communication between the two of us. We'll see how that goes, considering that I am unduly afflicted with impatience and a wee bit of a short temper...
But enough about me. Clare gleefully celebrated her ninth birthday, and I joyfully joined in because it was a non-party year! We honored the occasion in two ways. First, her BFF from preschool, Elise, came over for a sleepover. Part of Elise's present to Clare was a pair of slippers to match ones she has. Adorable. (As you can see, Clare is a giant in comparison to Elise, who is the beneficiary of most of Clare's hand-me-downs.) The girls played beautifully as always, and were kind enough to include Danny in much of their antics. These are some good girls!
On Sunday, the big day itself, Clare opted to have some one-on-one time with yours truly and requested that we shop. Twist my arm! So after we attended church as a family, she and I peeled off and shopped, ate lunch, and had a delightful time. Since she refuses to stop growing, she was in need of several things, including new pajamas. The girl loves her PJs!
We rounded out the event with her requested dinner of steak, twice-baked potatoes and green beans with vinaigrette, as well as cake. She was showered with gifts, adulation and love. We're all crazy about our Clare Bear!