Happy Birthday Rachel

Today my oldest baby turns 12.
The time went faster than I could imagine when she was my chatty little thing who wanted all the attention, all the time.
She is now a chatty big thing who wants all the attention all the time,
Iceskating 2010
but who also loves to give the perfect gift, be silly and creative, is determined to be herself regardless of what others think (and she REALLY doesn’t care what her peers or the world thinks about her or her style),
Rachel's birthday
who loves good books and movies, who totters on the edge between growing up and staying a little girl.
Rachel's birthday
She loves little girl (and boy) things still but not as much as she once did. There is a constant struggle within between the lure of grownup things and little girl things.
Rachel's birthday
We were going to take everyone to Chuck E. Cheese for her birthday– because she likes tradition and that is something we have done for a few years now but then migraine for Daddy meant that Daddy couldn’t go. Instead she chose to go out just with me to our favorite Chinese restaurant (where, unlike most places, she can easily eat) and then to T.J. Max to look at clothes, Claire’s Boutique to spend some birthday money on fake hair (she wore a pigtail that matched her hair but with purple shiny stuff running through to church this morning), then Michael’s for some watercolor paper. She had almost spent that money on a Fur Real kitty but after time and some thought went for the things she really wanted and enjoys.
Rachel's b-day cake
We are on the verge of adulthood here and the conflict within is a struggle for my childhood loving daughter. The cake she originally wanted was to be a cake decorated like the pond with a Cabbage Patch Kid ice skater on top. At the last minute she changed her mind to flowers and pink icing– a grown up cake, but she kept the sparkler candles instead of going for more sedate ones. It is interesting to see how she is developing, choosing deliberately each step of the way, when to go with her grown up urge and when to stick with her childlike one. At times we feel like we live with Katie Kaboom and yet the kabooms are getting less often as she settles into this new semi-grown up person she is becoming.