Well – we’re got our first official week of summer behind us! The girls went to Camp Galileo last week (this was Zoe’s fourth year there), where the theme was space exploration. Avery made planets and aliens in art and a functional rocket ship in science; Zoe sewed an alien in art and built a rover in science, which she displays below.
The girls don’t fight a lot, but they do bicker from time to time – and Q and I have encouraged them to talk through things (versus running to us) when they’re upset. I had to chuckle this morning, then, when I heard Avery yell at her sister after a Lego-inspired argument, “We tried to work it out! And now I’m stomping away!”
When Zoe turned seven we made a trip to the American Girl store and let her pick out her a doll, which she named Penelope. On Saturday, it was Avery’s turn – and it was girlie-overload as we browsed around the store, got the dolls’ hair and nail done, and dined with the newest member of our family (Chloe).
Avery has the habit of celebrating her birthday multiple times – or, perhaps more accurately, we’ve set the precedent for her to do so. This year her celebrating kicked off with a Friday evening art-themed birthday party with a few friends.
Seven years ago, on a sunny Friday morning, Q and I drove to the hospital; a few hours later, Zoe’s “present” made her appearance. Happy Birthday, my sweet Avery. (And to all the dads out there: Happy Fathers Day! Two special days in one…)
It’s official (at least according to the school calendar): Summer is here! The girls had a half-day of school, during which they “graduated” to the next grade, and – per tradition – I took them to do something fun afterwards. We spent some time at a nearby park and then headed to a local library, where I read a national park ranger was giving a presentation; there, the girls learned all about local wildlife, did some animal-related crafts, and then put on a little play. A great way to start our break…
For a recent class project, Zoe drew a “map” of her heart. She shared it with me last night and I grabbed the camera to capture it; someday it will be fun to look back and remember what was important to a 9-year-old.
Speaking of the end of the school year, the last major event in first grade happened on Sunday, when we went to Avery’s teacher’s house for a pool party. Mrs. E thinks of everything – there’s an ice cream truck, a pinata, an awards ceremony for each of the kids and (of course) swimming – and it’s something the kids (and their parents) will remember for years! We were lucky enough to do it twice…
I’ve written here about – and you’ve seen photos of – all our end-of-school-year activities. Fun for the kids, and usually fun for the parents: yes. But with each activity comes a (sometimes long) to-do list, and that can lead to stress and exhaustion. For a long time I thought I was the only one feeling overwhelmed by this time of year – but then I came across this (hilarious) piece, where the mom-author asks:
Are you sure that I can’t fill out and/or sign another field trip form-fundraising form-class placement form-book order form-class party form-popsicle request-overdue library books notice-missing library books notice-school district feedback form-one month of half-filled-out reading logs?
Are you sure that I can’t chaperone one or all eleven of the field trips between now and the last day of school? Don’t worry, I no longer have time to hold down a job. By the way, remember all that time between January and April? What happened there?
Are you sure that there isn’t some sort of spring concert-adorable play-other emotionally manipulative school event to go to now or every night until the last day of school? You know, something where maybe one of the boys can wear a too-big tie or the tallest girl in class can shyly stoop down in the back row? Maybe it could be a third grade dance or a fifth grade graduation? That sort of thing.
And on and on it goes. So, yeh, I guess I’m not the only one.
Last Friday, Avery’s class performed an opera called “Stone Soup,” and Avery’s role was one of the children. The photos and videos provide a taste of the performance (just ignore the heads in the way in the video).
When describing Avery I’m always using the words sweet, silly and sassy. Two examples of the latter behavior: At bedtime recently, she asked if she could watch a show when she woke up the next morning. “Instead of doing that, why don’t you read a book or play a game?” I suggested. “Are you kidding me?” she asked in an exasperated tone. And the next night, after she didn’t respond to something I had just said, I told her, “Mama is talking to you.” “Avery isn’t listening to you,” was her reply, along with a big laugh. (Don’t worry, though: Her sweetness counteracts the sass.)