Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Dear Gwen: Month One Hundred and Nine

Dear Gwen,
Today, you are one hundred and nine months old.

Around the time of your birthday, the carnival came to town. Grannie and Grandpa, feeling like they had not bought you enough birthday goodies, put some cash in your birthday card for the express purpose of sending you to the carnival. When the day arrived, you and your dad set out after school to go check out the rides - with a brief stop first at Chapters so you could spend your birthday gift card. Then off to the carnival, where you stood in a really long lineup to buy a really expensive hot dog, all the while observing the lineups for the tickets and the various rides. And also observing that you were really cold. In the end, you asked Dad to take you back to Chapters to spend the rest of your birthday money there.

That's pretty much the essence of you, right there. It is no coincidence that you finished your third Harry Potter book this month (in addition to the dozens of other books you've read recently, which you finish so quickly we hardly have time to even notice them).

After long weeks of waiting and various levels of frustration, your new big girl bed has finally arrived, and it looks great (and is very comfy!). Your dad also chose two big bookshelves from Jysk that are serving to display all your various Lego, Shopkins, and other model collections. Your room is looking great and I think you are really enjoying it.

A few weeks ago, you got an invitation to a birthday party. Not just any birthday party - a sleepover birthday party. As you may recall, I have banned sleepover parties because you never get any sleep and then you are a raging monster all the next day. Well, for some reason I felt compelled to give you another chance. I discussed the situation with the host's dad. "Last time she went to a sleepover she stayed up until three am and was miserable all the next day," I texted. "We would never let that happen! The kids will go to sleep by 9:30 or 10 at the latest," he assured me. It turns out this meant that THE ADULTS would go to sleep at that time. You told me the next day that you didn't go to sleep AT ALL. This despite my urging you to go to sleep, get a good sleep, at all costs you absolutely MUST get some sleep, or else there are no more sleepovers until you move out. You had melatonin with you, you had the reassurance that you could call me at any time, and you had the knowledge of what was at stake. And still, you gleefully chose not to go to sleep. And then all the next day, you looked like this:

No more sleepovers. Just no.

This past weekend, a long weekend thanks to Victoria Day, was rudely interrupted by a bout of strep throat. On Saturday night, you were up till the wee hours with a terrible fever, prompting us to put you in a cool bath until you could be comfortable. In the morning, you were absolutely fine, and we figured whatever had caused the fever was now gone. Nope! It came back that afternoon. First you had a two-hour nap on the couch, and then your temperature started to rise again. By bedtime, you were miserable and begging us to take you to the doctor. We feared a long, long wait in the emergency room, being the Sunday night of a long weekend, but in fact it took just an hour for us to find out it was strep throat and get a prescription for antibiotics (still long enough for you to finish an entire book - see note above re your reading speed). I was sharp enough to remember how dreadful it is to try and force liquid medicine into you, and asked for capsules instead of the suspension - you've been swallowing them faithfully and without fuss for the last few days, and are feeling much better now. Still, we'd like a do-over on that long weekend!

Recently, you observed Pixel doing what all dogs do, and asked, "Why is Pixel licking his butt?" Before I could answer, you continued sagely, "Well, I guess he has his reasons." This is also the essence of you.

As a Grade Three student, you were able to audition for this year's school talent show. You and your friend Arielle are hoping to sing a duet together of a Bruno Mars song. Your audition went well and you are waiting for the final word about whether you will get to be part of the show. In addition to that, there is also the school fun fair and your piano recital to prepare for. Such a busy time of year!


You chose a sewing kit from the recent Scholastic flyer, and have been busily making all kinds of charming little felt animals. This is the scene you set up for me on Mother's Day: a fox and two top-hatted penguins have gone camping (the birthday card is meant to be a tent). Would that camping were always so civilized and idyllic! Also, it's great that your hand sewing skills, at nine years old, have already well surpassed my own.

Well, that's it for this month, Gwen. Please keep being awesome, with maybe a little more sleep and a little less strep throat. I love you!



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