In exactly 10 years from now, when my Smudge turns 18 years old and is itching to flee the nest her daddy and I have so happily crafted for her, there will be a flood of memories that will make the separation just a little bit easier.
Narrowing those memories down to a list of even the top 50 is nearly impossible. But I can certainly try. At the top of that list so far would be: The snuggles she shares with us each and every morning in “the big bed”; Swing dancing about the living room as we belt out One Direction songs in our pre-teen, boy-band dance-a-thons; The smell of her strawberry red hair that frames her sweetly freckled pug nose.
There will be plenty of other memories that will emerge over the next decade, new flights of fancy that will bump one or two award winners from the top ten list. And I can’t wait for all of us to experience each and every one of them together.
But when I think about my girl and her pre-teen years I will always be struck by the amazingly strong friendships she’s already developed at this oh-so-young of an age. I seriously don’t remember having such a gaggle of besties before hitting the halls of junior high school as a 5’10” 7th grader whose best friends topped out at 5’4”. At least she and I will have that in common.
Smudge and her pals are an energetic and creative group who are all about gathering at our house. Hello to pre-teen “hang outs.” Goodbye to “play-dates” that are so first grade.
Dress up, role-playing and lots of boy-band music, this exact scenario honestly happens just about weekly at our house. I had to capture it on video because soon enough they’ll have moved onto yet another pre-teen lark.
This time around, the plans have been set, the invitations have been made and the dresses have been chosen. These ladies are nothing if not detail oriented.
Now all that’s left is to put the guests in their places and share a chocolate-flavored toast to Pippa’s big day.
There are three things that are always at the center of these lady’s time together at Casa del Larsen:
1. Snacks and drinks (duh, they’re kids)
2. Directing the dogs (because they can)
2. Dreaming about what life will be like when they’re older (ahem, they’re pre-teens)
Thankfully through this video, their childhood stories are not only imprinted in my memory bank, but will be reflected upon right before my eyes as many times as I want—or need—to remember their youthful 8-year-old lives.
And that makes me very happy. Cheers!
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