I walked into my room the other day to find a letter on my pillow. I picked it up and looked at the colorful writing on the envelope. My name artfully scrawled all over it. I was intrigued. Who wouldn't be?
The letter opened with a very typical, brown-nosing.
Dear ever-so- powerful and awesome mom,
I knew this was going to be good and I wondered to myself what my two, clever, crafty teens were after. As I read down the letter I became increasingly impressed with the business-like manner in which the letter was written and the extreme attention to detail the two of them had gone to in order to hopefully be granted their request. Below is a picture of the letter followed by a transcription.
Dear ever so powerful and awesome mom,
We (Maddy and Gabby) have been thinking a lot about summer lately; even though it is around five months away we end up talking about it. We were quite disappointed when you said we would not be able to go to camp this year, but we understand your decision and respect it. Maddy and I have found something else to go to- which is fun but less cost than a camp. It is called the Anime Expo in Los Angeles, June 26-July 3rd (or 2nd).
Katelyn and her mom told us about it and have agreed to drive us there if we go. We hope to go 2 days, for it is what Mrs. Fiers was planning. It does cost money but Maddy and I are paying for our own tickets. We will be there most of the day so Maddy and I will pack our Bento Boxes for lunch.
I will be carrying my cellphone so as to be able to keep in touch with you. If you decide to let us go, one of the days you are there you can use these FREE LA ZOO tickets, so you can be in the area. You can have fun with one of the little kids while being close to us at the same time.
Mrs. Fiers will be with us the whole time. I will be texting you my blood sugars and anything else I need to tell you throughout the day. We each would be buying a two day ticket, so you wouldn't have to pay anything, including food and drinks. We are paying for everything.
We have looked into this a lot, and are very excited. We've put a lot of research into this to make sure everything would be in order. We really hope that you let us go and we love you very, very much!
Maddy and Gabby
Zoo Tickets: Good for two people
Times: Yet to be determined
Location: L.A Convention Center
How could anyone say no to all that planning and research. It looks like they have done their job well. I have two very excited girls who will be going to A-Ex and maybe meeting some of their Cosplay idols. I don't even really know what that means but I do know that it will further their artictic talents. I'm so proud of my girls.
Today Ginny and Gabby had their first piano recital. Now I am not one of those biased moms that thinks their child is magnificent no matter what. I see my kids faults and I hear their mistakes. But today I was amazed at the skill they both demonstrated in their performances. Ginny is one of those kids that takes a lot of prodding to practice but a few weeks ago she just committed to practicing without being told and she has progressed so far.
Gabby brought tears to my eyes which is no small feat. She played near flawlessly and the songs were timed so well. She has blossomed and I think has the talent to be a very good musician.
Looks can be deceiving. These carefree, adorable young ladies are valiant heroes in disguise. Sidney is Gabby's friend who also has diabetes. They are almost the exact same age and the exact same size. I am so thankful that Gabby has a friend that 'gets' her in a way that none of the rest of us can.
...to the widget on the right hand side of the page. *sniff* *sniff*
Yes, that's right. We are in the final countdown to two teenage girls in the house. I'm not sure how I feel about this. Part excited, part loaded with trepidation. I know that age is really just a number and they aren't going to magically change over night just because they turn 13. In fact, they already changed a lot just in this past year. One of them already merging into womanhood.
The elder girls birthday is always the hardest on Mike. He has a very hard time watching his first babies grow up. I know that it will be quite a ride and the start of 16 years of having teenagers in my house. (I think, if I did the math correctly) So for now I'm just going to grab hold and hang on!
I think the elder girls room is fast becoming our favorite girl hangout. It's so bright and sunny in there, easily the brightest room in the whole house. I often notice the girls congregating in there doing things like brushing each other's hair and drawing or sewing. It's such a fun place. I had to sneak attack with my camera and capture a moment.
Compromise is an important aspect to learn, especially if you are an almost teen sharing a bedroom with your twin sister. My elder girls are about as different as night and day and that includes nearly everything including musical tastes. While they both have very eclectic taste in music- like thier mom and dad- they both have favorite artists and it will come as no surprise to anyone that they bands they love are on a completely different spectrum.
So we come to a couple months ago. We're on our way to the beach for the day, just me and the girls. It's time to pick a cd for the road. I flip through a bunch of cd's they have burned from their itunes and I see one called 'The Katy/Amy cd.
"What's this one?" I ask.
"That's the Katy/Amy cd. We made it because it has both our favorites on it and that way we don't fight over what to listen to in our room." said Maddy.
"Ok.., " I thought, "Why not, let's give it a whirl."
I popped it in and heard the angelic lilting voice of Amy Lee from Evanescence. Of course backed by the heavy rock feel that they are known for. It certainly is moody music putting the listener in an introspective place. So we're driving, we're singing along. The song ends.
Katy Perry blasts on, and it's like we've entered another dimension. Bouncy Bubblegum pop is now throwing our introspection into silly giddiness. And this is how it goes. On and On until we reach the beach. Moody-Happy-Moody-Happy.
It makes me giggle a little to myself because not only is this mish mash of music a lot like the emotions involved in raising pre-teens but it's a lot like the emotions involved in raising Maddy and Gabby who are two so very different people.
Ah well...at least they have learned to compromise. It's a crazy ride.
At the culmination of camp each year there is a dance. Last year Gabby got asked to the dance by a boy. Of course we all gave her heck for an entire year about it because that is what we do. *smile* This year we teased her and Maddy relentlessly (and only half teasing) about NO boys. It became a running joke. Gabby informed us when she got back that the same boy from last year asked her to the dance this year. He walked up to her and said, "Hey, I think I recognize you.". She said, "I don't know who you are." I think she broke his heart. Maybe I need to teach her to let people down gently!
The girls also informed us that they were two of the only girls weearing one piece bathing suits. I told them that that was just fine with me. They didn't seem to mind-especially Maddy, it's at places like camp where they see some of the differences in their lives and other kids lives. Apparently this year there was a camper in their cabin with black hair extensions and she was going through the ear lobe stretching process (I'm too old to know the term for this). I'm not judgmental about things like this, most people know I went through my own 'finding myself' phase and had various periods of colored hair and shaved portions of my head. But the part I found interesting was at age 13, she had kept this from her parents. This information gives me an opportunity to talk with the girls and assure them that no matter what acrazy things they want to do to themselves, they can always talk to me about it. I don't want them to ever feel like they have to hide things from me. I am fully aware now that the girls, having almost entered teenagehood are going to head full force into the realm of 'finding themselves'. I am so interested to see how that pans out and I am sure I will gain a whole new respect for my own mom.
Lisa- The Blogger
This is me. I like to think I am complex and multi-faceted but I think much of the time I am a silly, zany, free-spirited person who really enjoys life. I like to make people happy, I like to be happy. I am a sanguine through and through. I love crafting, Pinterest, gathering ideas, computer stuff, watching movies, sleepovers and hugging on my offspring. I don't like internet haters who assume to 'know' me just by what they read here. There is a reason this is called 'Pieces' Of Us. It's just a small peek in the window. You may think you know, but you have no idea.
Mike- The Sportsman
Mike is more than just a sportsman but he does like to shoot a deer now and then. In his other spare moments which are few and far between he is taking college courses to finish his degree or tending to his pack as Cubmaster. He loves to spend time with the kids and they think he is pretty great even if he is a goofball who loves to embarrass them.
Madeline- The Free Spirited Bohemian One
This kid could be happy with just some books, a drawing pad and a pencil. She has an aptitude for art and has really excelled at drawing over the past year. She is patient and kind but has a mischievous twinkle in her eye. Maddy is dependable, if you want something done, she's your girl and she does it with a cheerful spirit.
Gabriella- The Creative Ray of Light
Gabby has sparkle, she has pizzazz, she has talent. She is the kid you never have to tell to practice the piano instead you tell her to take a break. She loves to chat with her friends on the computer (what teen doesn't?) and write stories with her twin sister. She's a practical joker and has a terrific sense of humor. Did I mention she is also a talented actress as well?
AJ- The Deep Thinker
This boy is going places! AJ is always thinking. He is a true philosopher pondering the whys of everything but he is also an inventor/engineer also determining the hows. He spends hours building and taking things apart. We worry that he will one day blow up the house but for now he is pretty darn useful at optimizing our computers and rewiring things that break around here.
Genevieve Audrey- The Spunky One
Spunky doesn't even begin to describe it. She is a social butterfly and she loves to sit and chat as long as her victim will listen. Ginny is a tiny little thing but her spirit is huge and she's smart to boot. She is proving to be an excellent big sister and is teaching Jilly the ropes.
Caleb Allen- The Littlest Man
He doesn't like it when you run your fingers through his hair so we do it all the more. Caleb is just so cute and snuggly. He is always full of enthusiasm whether it be positive or negative. He either really loves something or he doesn't like it at all. We love him regardless.
Jillian Clementine- The Boss
She may be small but she makes up for it big time. Jillian likes to let people know who is in charge and we often have to take her down a peg... or five. She says funny things so often that she has her own blog Jillyish. She loves to use huge words like intrusive and incredible or any other adjective that shouldn't come out of a three year old. She will also tell you that she is too shy to say Hi but don't believe it because she is pure drama.
Jess..ica- She hiccups
She may not be blood but we claim her as one of us. Honestly, I don't know what I'd do without her around. She makes us laugh and she can sing like a hamster. Everyone needs a friend with a hamster voice. Now she'll probably ask me to take this down but I'm not gonna. Because we love her.