Monday, March 27, 2017

Fabulous 14

Another March 25 has come and gone, and our firstborn is now 14! It was a marvelous birthday weekend that kicked off on Friday with her going to the Marist high school musical with a couple of friends. They first came over to our house after school, and Danny found himself a welcome addition to their powwow on the trampoline. Who saw that coming?? As much credit as I give to him for his ability to hang with teenage girls, I also give props to Clare for being so inclusive of her kid brother. (Laura kept to herself, interestingly enough.)
Saturday, the actual birthday, began with these awesome birthday donuts, which were every bit as delicious as they were decorative. From there we filled the day with a haircut for Clare and soccer games for Danny and Laura, and some presents in between.
The celebration culminated in a dinner party for 11 teen girls, which wound up being a LOT more fun than I initially feared. Tim and I reserved an adult table right next to theirs, and coerced a few other moms to join us. We had a good time, but clearly the girls had a GREAT time, which was just a delight to observe.

I particularly enjoyed the end-of-party photo shoot, which entailed each girl needing to get her picture taken with the birthday girl. Clare was just glowing. She obviously has a great group of friends - but then again, why wouldn't she? She's pretty great herself!

We ended the weekend with Clare's choice of dinner for Sunday night - and cake! As the State Geography Bee is at the end of this week, her choice of decoration seemed pretty perfect.

Happy 14th birthday, Clare! We couldn't love you more, and we are confident you will change the world.

Monday, March 6, 2017

A Sweet Hike

For unclear reasons, Danny and Laura had today off from school. It was a lovely day, so I mentioned heading to Sweetwater Creek State Park, a place I've been eager to visit for years. Miraculously they were up for it (okay, especially when bribed with the prospect of an afternoon sweet treat), so after a leisurely morning we headed out. And I'm happy to say that it lived up to my expectations, and they both thoroughly enjoyed themselves as well! Danny particularly reveled in trekking out to the middle of the creek on some of the larger boulders, showing how far he's come from his more tentative days. For her part, Laura has actually become a little less of a daredevil than she used to be, but that's not a bad thing at all.

The ruins of an old manufacturing plant.
Score one for Mother Nature, and some unscheduled time on a Monday! But now back to our regularly scheduled sports practices...