Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Sixth birthday

Yesterday, Min turned six years old. Six! I can no longer carry her for any distance (although Brodie willingly does so and will for as long as she continues to ask to be carried) but I can pick her up for a hug. Her second loose tooth will fall out any day now. She's almost 48 inches and weighs about 45 pounds. Disney princesses are long since out and horses and American Girl are in. She can read an entire book to me without tiring.

She is still such a pleasant person to be around. She never cries and screams to get her way. She rarely whines. She is considerate of others' feelings. She likes school and gets along well with her friends. Every day I am aware of what a blessing it is to have her in my life.

A few weeks ago we went to a birthday party for a two-year-old girl who is the daughter of Navy physicians who are friends of ours. These docs did a rotation in the Bethesda Naval Hospital NICU and they have friends who also did rotations there. Our friends loved telling the other docs at the party about Margot and her stay in the NICU. The other docs - some of whom did their rotations there while Min was a patient, although they didn't specifically remember her - loved seeing how Margot has grown and thrived. Some commented that the NICU was full of 28 and 30-weekers right now, and that they would return to tell those babies' parents about M and how she's grown since her early start.

For Min's birthday, we started with cinnamon rolls for breakfast (her request) and presents. Her gifts were that fluffy robe, a zhu-zhu pet, and a Scooby Doo game for her Leapster.

Later, Margot and I went ice-skating at the Sculpture Garden. We were both unsteady at first, but after an hour we skated around and around while holding hands.

We ate lunch out, and then went to the National Gallery to see Degas' Little Dancer. (This was Margot's request, also. Her art teacher talked about Little Dancer some months ago and M has wanted to see it ever since.) Lunch was pizza and hot chocolate.

Later, we came back to the house and colored. The three of us ate dinner (M's birthday request was chicken cutlets, mashed potatoes, and edemame) and then watched Home Alone 2.

Happy birthday, Margot! We love you.

Monday, December 27, 2010

The final days of being five

Margot is down to the final hours of her fifth year. To recap what is always a hectic week, here is what she's been up to:

Visiting cousins in New York City

Celebrating Christmas Eve

Decoding the letter left by Santa

Thanks, Santa! An American Girl doll! Just what Margot wanted!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

The Big Questions

Why is it that the "Big Questions" always come when I'm running around and unable to formulate a good answer?

As I drove Margot to school this morning she asked, "Why did Jesus have a stepfather?"

My frazzled mind was not prepared for that one. You can bet that when I am sitting in my meeting today downtown at HHS, I won't be thinking about the editorial direction of the Office on Women's Health. Instead I'll be composing the best answer to this question (to be delivered after school) so she doesn't stop asking me the big questions.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

My Clara

On Sunday afternoon, Margot and I saw a local production of The Nutcracker. It was called the Mini Nut and was geared toward kids 10 and under (it was only an hour long!). This renewed her interest in ballet. For most of the fall, Margot was uninterested in her ballet class until they started learning a choreographed dance that they practiced each week instead of just doing steps and warm-ups. Seeing The Nutcracker and the incredibly talented ballet dancers reminded Margot how much she loves ballet.

Yesterday, her class performed their dance for parents. I don't have a good video of the dance because the woman next to me kept putting her head in front of my camera lens. Instead of posting a video of someone else's head, I'll give you a few still shots of Margot dancing.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Rocking Around the Christmas Tree

Topping the tree in December 2010

She really has grown since December 2006.

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Margot and Santa, 2010

Today Margot visited with Santa. She was nervous, but bravely approached him and explained the three items she wishes for at Christmas. By the end, they were laughing together like old friends.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Mysteries and more

We have a mystery on our hands. Outside our front door, there are two small evergreen trees that Margot decorated for Christmas with small, silver ornaments. Every morning (and sometimes when I return from work) several of these ornaments are scattered on our front steps. The first time I thought maybe it was the wind (but it hasn't been particularly windy). This morning, the ornaments were everywhere. Something is purposefully moving the ornaments.

I think it's the neighbor's cat, but I can't be sure. I put it to Margot to figure out a way to solve the mystery. We'll see what she comes up with.

Last month, Brodie and I took a long-awaited trip to Hawaii for our 10-year wedding anniversary. It was wonderful, but so hard to go without Margot. We completed a hike, though, that was way beyond Margot's capabilities (24 miles round trip and very steep). Here are some photos:
Surfers on 20 foot waves

Part of the treacherous trail we hiked

Hotel pool at sunrise (the time difference had us rising at 4:30am most days)

This was my shower for three days while we camped

Sunset at the hotel

Finally, Thanksgiving was eventful, as we had to run Margot to the ER for severely swollen glands (they were the size of oranges). She was discharged the same day with antibiotics and has been recovering slowly (5 days later the glands have shrunk to walnut size). But we also got to visit with Tim, Maggan, Madeleine and Declan, which was a treat.