Sunday, December 23, 2012

Eleven years...where did the time go?

 My last post was on December 9th, just one day before my daughter's 11th birthday.    I had planned to post about her birthday that next day to celebrate and then I got busy with her holiday concert, a family celebration, etc.  So I thought I would post at the end of that week and then the Newtown, CT tragedy occurred just one week ago and I was frozen.  I couldn't think of anything but those sweet little angels and all of my energy and motivation to do ANYTHING left me.   I have tried over the last week to try to think like the father of Emilie Parker who was able to express that he had no animosity towards the killer and his family.  I'm not there, but what I did was smother my children with love and all of my attention instead.  

I wanted to be with them more than ever and let so many day to day things fall behind.   My little guy was home sick all week from school and while I would normally have been very stressed over a sick one and having him home the week before Christmas break with so much left to do, I loved every single minute of time we spent together snuggling (except the sick part).  I told him countless times that I loved having him being home and he kept asking, "why?  I'm sick."  I tried to explain it to him, but I really couldn't put it into words. I just needed him and my daughter around me as much as possible.

So now as life gets somewhat back to normal and I try to get ready for Christmas this year, I do still want to celebrate my daughter even more than ever and express how special she truly is.  Oh, and all of the festive and fun Christmas ideas I had planned to share...well, not this year I suppose.  I just don't feel it!

 This year instead of a party I got the privilege of having her all to myself.   Just she and I went to the Carrie Underwood/Hunter Hayes concert and it was INCREDIBLE!   Here we are at the Carrie Underwood concert...just she and I.
We started the night with a fun dinner at Dinosaur BBQ enjoying her favorite...ribs!   We had so much fun and the best part of the night for me was when she reached out to hold my hand in a crowd.  It's not often anymore that my 11 year old needs or wants to hold my hand and I loved every minute of it.  She is strong-willed, independent, motivated, smart and very driven, but in that minute, she was my little girl again.

All dolled up for our big night out!

Speaking of my little girl.....I spent some time remembering the early days with her.    She was such a fun baby.   We did so many fun things and I so loved being home with just her.     Here she is in her first year.


With our former dog...I like to call this Trouble #1 and Trouble #2...they kept me busy.

Posing for the camera

First Halloween

With my little sister...they seemed so far apart in age back then, but now 2 1/2 years is nothing.
Getting into trouble

Her first trip to Florida to visit Nonny and PopPop

Visiting with her great grandmother, Nana.

Picking out our first Christmas tree with Nonny.

Her 1st birthday! 


Shortly after her 1st birthday, her dad and I got divorced.  While this was an incredibly difficult time for me, I  loved my time with this little peanut even more.   She was FULL of character back she is so timid about expressing her spirit outside of our house.   At home, she's a school, all business!   (She would KILL me for sharing these

With Grandpa on Father's Day

Styling her hair...we used to call her "little Momma" because she had to do EVERYTHING I did.  Wow, how times she wants to be opposite I think.

Her 2nd Birthday!


When she turned the big 3, she started school.   This was the first time I had to "share" her with others.  She loved it and I cried so hard that first day.

Of course her personality didn't, Miss Independent remained and will always be Miss Independent.

Loved dress up and the glasses were still always upside down.
Trouble, oh no problem.  Here she is when she painted her hands so she could tell me "stop" and "go" in green and red.  Creative to say the least!

She helped me celebrate my 30th that year.

Her 3rd birthday!
Her first party with "school friends".

As she grew, her personality soared.  She has always been an independent and strong-willed little girl who knows what she does and does NOT like.  That will never change.


The next year was a very special year.   I got re-married and we began spending lots of time as our new little family and we had fun together.

She continued to grow both physically and mentally and starting making lots of friends.  But...she was still my little peanut.

We went to Disney with Nonny for the first time too.

Her 4th birthday!


Right before her next birthday, we welcomed her little brother into the world!

She was a great big sister.

And big cousin too!
She no longer looked like my little baby girl, but more of a big girl now. 

We visited Disney a 2nd time with Nonny this year as well.

Her 5th birthday!


And then, it all started the next year.  Kindergarten and the time just started to fly by.
She got on a bus one September day and has not looked back since.  Watch out world, here she comes.

From the first day to the last of that school year I saw the most growth I had seen in my little peanut.  She learned to read, do simple math and made lots of friends.

That year we took our first family trip to the Outer Banks.

And a trip to Cancun!

And we celebrated her 6th birthday too!


She started first grade this year!

And we went back to Disney that year too with both Grandmas and our little family of four.

For her 7th birthday we went to the American Girl doll store.  So fun!


She started 2nd grade this year.

We had some family photos done in NYC that year.

Her 8th Birthday was celebrated with friends in true jumpy house style.   We had her 2nd grade class come.

And of course we celebrated with cousins and family too.  Oh, and we got our first iPod!


This year welcomed 3rd grade...officially a bigger kid in the school and starting to look very grown up.

This was a year filled with lots of soccer, friends and family trips now that her brother was a little older.  She also got glasses this year.
A trip to visit Nonny and PopPop in Florida.

And to Disney.

When 9 rolled around we no longer had just any old birthday, it was sleepovers.  So fun for the girls, not so fun for this mommy.

The girls got all "styled" and we hit to the town for pizza.


This year she was officially a big kid at school and in 4th grade and involved in every possible activity she could be in both in and out of school.  She kept us all very busy!

We continued to do fun family trips together including the wax museum in NYC.

And of course, Disney again!  

She ended 4th grade leaving her elementary school having won tons of awards.  She made this Momma VERY proud!

We celebrated her 10th birthday with another sleepover party!
And with family too.


And that brings us to this year....

I could not be more proud of my daughter.  I wish I could take credit and say that she is who she is because of me, but I certainly can not.  She is so many things that I never was at her age and may never be.  I never expected to learn as much from her and I have.

She is undoubtedly:

Her own person - in every sense.  She stands up for her feelings about her friends, things around her and in life in general.

She is independent and self motivated.  She works extremely hard in school for her and not for anyone else.  She wants to succeed.

She is strong - not physically, but emotionally.  She does not let the small things bother her about people or the way they treat her.  I think I let them bother them me more than

She is confident.  She is not afraid to be proud of herself and express what she can do!

Here she is this year...

First day of 5th grade

Trying out her locker...and fitting inside it!

Her first day with contacts...bye, bye glasses.

And on her 11th birthday!!

I love this little girl more than I could have ever imagined and as much as the first time I held her.   Even though she can make me crazy, she is so incredibly special and has made me a better person for having been her mother!

I love you Peanut!   Always and forever!   

Poshed Up