Thursday, January 28, 2010

The Secret Reader

I can probably count on two hands the number of times Margot has gone to bed without us reading a book or two beforehand. Occasionally, I do admit, I've let her trade 30 minutes of The Electric Company for reading before bed (I justify the television-for-book swap since that show focuses on reading skills).

After I leave the room, Margot continues to look at books for 30 minutes or so until she falls asleep. I noticed last night that there was a pile of easy-readers next to her bed that she had pulled from her shelf. I asked her if she would read one to me. I know she can sound out and read the pages of these books. I've heard her read to herself in her room. But last night, when I asked her to read to me, she shook her head and tears formed in her eyes.

"Why not?" I asked. "Why don't you want to read to me?"

"Because," she said, lip quivering, "if I read to you, then you will stop reading to me!"

I told her that we could still have this bedtime ritual, and she could just practice reading aloud. She said no. She wouldn't read to me. Of course, I dropped the whole issue and read to her. I hope she will love books the way I do. She can continue to read in secret, and I will be the one to read aloud.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Skiing Video

Here is video of Margot skiing in Jackson Hole last weekend.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Elle fait du ski!

I knew the time would come when Margot surpassed me in ability to do something, but I didn't know it would come so soon. I am truly humbled. It only took her five years. On our recent trip to Jackson, WY, she became a full-fledged skier. She went from this:

(Ski school on the bunny hill with her instructor)

to this:
(Getting on a chair lift)

to this:
(Riding a chair lift - with Brodie of course - like these kids who I don't know but who asked me to take their photo)

to this:
(skiing green runs by herself)

to this:
(enjoying hot chocolate at a well-deserved apres ski break)

I couldn't be more proud of her. There isn't much that scares me in this world, but skiing has never been my thing. It leaves me feeling completely out-of-control, which my micro-managing personality just cannot stand. This all started back in high school when I broke my rented skis in half while hurtling down an icy mountain somewhere in Western Massachusetts. I'll face death on any poor transportation system in any developing country (see this post) before I'll go down a black diamond again.

Margot, on the other hand, has fully embraced the wind and the speed. She never stopped smiling while on the slopes.

She said to me, "Don't worry, mommy. It's easy. I'll teach you."

Just like I wish I could get my mother to get on an airplane and explore the world, Margot will have to wish that she could get me to be a competent skier/snowboarder.

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Birthday Extravaganza

Today was Margot's birthday party. This was her first real birthday party that didn't just involve cake and singing with family. I'm glad we held off until age 5 to go for the big party, and I am also glad that we did it this particular year. Min was smiling ear-to-ear with 12 of her classmates, 3 of her 8 cousins, and 1 former schoolmate. That seems like a lot of kids, doesn't it? I realize now that she knows a pretty large circle of kids, and truly counts them as friends. It's nice, though, because I know all the parents (for the most part) and, more importantly, I like all of the parents. So her little social circle has quickly become part of my social circle.

A local gymnastics center hosted the party. The staff there took care of everything from leading the games to making the goody bags to cutting the cake and it was totally worth every dime! I highly recommend outsourcing your child's party if you can. It was very nice to come home to a clean house after the party. :)

When pressed about her favorite part of the party, Margot couldn't decide if it was the bouncy-train (like a moonbounce), the trampoline, or the princess cake. Mostly, though, her favorite part was that she got to go first for every single activity and, for 90 precious minutes, she got to call all the shots.