The past few months have been a blur. Before we had a chance to take the tree down, 2012 was off and running. Everyone is good and busy and suddenly summer camp sign-up is on the horizon. Really? One big event that anchors the beginning of each year is Isabel's birthday. This year was a special one because after much negotiation and many months of countdown calendars, Isabel was turning Seven. What's the big deal? Well, we agreed to let her get her ears pierced (!) when she turned seven. A little young? Perhaps for some. But we figured our seven year old was up for handling the responsibility, and sure enough she has. Each time she cleans her ears and twists the little gold studs, her face beams and flirts with pride in the mirror. And it hasn't worn off. A couple months in, and she is still pinching herself. I can SO remember that feeling...like it was a dream every night that didn't come true until I was 12! The latest negotiation on the table is long dangly earrings- which I am putting my foot down about. Not appropriate. Down-right strange, I think, on little ears-unless for dress-up, and none of them are real gold or silver, so NO- not for a while. She did manage to get 10 minutes around the house with long feather earrings mIke bought at some hippie street fair. They sure did look cute, but her ears paid the price with instant soreness. I think she understands a bit now.
SO, the ears have been pierced and the birthday party was a smaller hit this year. A more sophisticated, intimate girly affair. I don't think the annual disco bash is totally a thing of the past, but for this year- a little sleep over with a few friends felt just right. Girly primping at the local echo park salons, pizza, ice cream, outfit changes, a hilarious jam session, and a movie was just what the BIG girls ordered.
Isabel seems to be embracing her seven year old maturity well. She talks and thinks a little differently. The hang with her has turned a corner, one that digs in bit deeper. Conversations are complex and her observations can be poetic and dreamy. She is thoughtful in a grander way- thinking ahead and thinking of others. At times this includes concern and emotions that create worry. Like thoughts I should totally record such as, "I don't ever want to leave this house- I want to live with you guys forever". But mostly we can talk through these fleeting weight-of-the-world woes and put her mind at ease. Going through her closet recently, she made a few different piles: 1 for "Good will- like Haiti or Japan, or maybe the homeless Grandaddy helps", 1 for "Anabel" and 1 for "my daughter". When I suggested we toss a pair of old 3T raggedy old pj bottoms, Isabel quickly responded "Mom, these pjs are like A STORY to me". Sniff. Enough said.