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Katie B's Parenting Journal

Entry 22 ~ May 4, 2010
A Little Bragging

EllaPlease indulge me and allow me to brag a little (okay--a lot) about Ella in this entry. Her Spring Music Concert was scheduled for last week. Knowing my beautiful girl hates wearing dresses, I warned her a few days ahead of time that she would be wearing a dress. No more was said until the morning of the concert. She woke up earlier than normal and came in to my room to wake me up. All smiles and already dressed for school. She said she wanted me to wake up and see how great she looked and that it would be okay to wear those hand-me-down jeans and t-shirt to the program. And so began her anti-dress campaign that would last up until the program began. My favorite argument from her was that she wouldn't be able to do her "moves" in a dress. I was pretty sure that whatever "moves" she had would be doable in a dress.

It took both Randy and I showing absolutely no signs of wavering to get her in a dress. However, it wasn't my first choice for her to wear. I allowed some compromise on which dress she could wear. Wow--that girl is good, isn't she? I did tell her that there would be no compromise on her hair. She would wear it in the style of my choosing. And she looked beautiful. Obviously none of this is the "braggy" part. Fast forward to the actual program.

I write this with a humble and proud heart. My little Miss Ella stole the show. The group was made up of all the first and second graders in the school. She stuck out in an amazing and completely entertaining way. Most of the kids didn't do any motions. Some kids tried to do the motions. But Ella did the motions like she was in a Broadway show. She wasn't obnoxious or silly. She was just a bright light in an otherwise dull program. Randy and I were beaming with pride. It was so fun to watch. This child had not one hint of self-consciousness. It was like she was at home on stage. I do see now what she meant by her "moves"--haha!

EllaAs I went to get her after the program and ever since then, I keep getting stopped by parents who are complimenting Ella's performance. I'll admit that I don't know how to handle the comments. I am much more concerned about looking prideful to other people. So I try my best to give all the credit to Ella because she did not get that spirit from me. It is absolutely a gift from God. On Friday night was her school carnival. Her school is a K-12 charter school. On the day I took Ella to register for kindergarten, she actually stopped and had a wonderful conversation with the school's superintendent (Dr. G.). Dr. G. noted what a friendly child she was. I just said something like, "Yes, you have no idea!" So at the school carnival on Friday, Dr. G. stopped me and told me how pleased she was with Ella's performance at the program. She also said how much she just loves Ella. Of course, Ella gave her a big hug and chatted away about the face painting and how much fun she was having. It all gets me so excited to watch Ella grow. I pray she never loses her amazing spirit. Yes, she drives me nuts when she won't just "conform" but I know that I have to be deliberate in letting her spirit soar and then reigning her back in at all the right times. Ha! Another easy task for this mom . . .

Only three weeks of school left for us. Our schedule is packed full of activities, but as each week goes by, we end something and the schedule lightens a little. It's always such a relief to get a little break. Ella finishes up soccer this week with two more practices and two more games. Next week is our last scheduled parent helper duty in Owen's class. I always get so burned out on "scheduled" activities that I refuse to commit to anything in the summer. But we are considering keeping the boys in gymnastics and will probably get them all in to at least one session of swim lessons. I have great ideas and intentions for our summer. I want the kids to work on more chores around the house. We will pay them an allowance. I'm also hoping we can really get involved in summer reading, yoga, lots more bike riding, and some academic time. Of course, that all will require some amount of scheduling and discipline for all of us. I do think the kids are ready for more responsibility around the house and I'm hoping we can integrate it in a positive way in our summer plans.

We had our six month review for Lilly's therapy. It was pretty much a formality with our Early Intervention case manager to keep her therapy going for at least another six months. While I know this is all necessary, I can't help but feel slightly discouraged that we can't just be past all this. Lilly is still taking some steps, but her strong will and lack of muscle tone in her hips are blocking her progress. I suppose she is still making progress, but I am so ready for her to be walking independently. All in good time, right?

I'm guessing that my next entry might actually come after school is out for Owen and Ella. Yippee! I really am looking forward to the laid back days of summer. And thanks for allowing me some "brag time."

~ Katie

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