Well we're halfway through another winter, or close enough thereabouts.
You attended a play this month with a few of the classes from your new school. Your Mom got to go along to chaperone, and that part you liked. The play itself, not so much. You went to see a local production of Annie, and when I got home from work and asked you how it was you spelled out your feelings for me, and wouldn't say another word about it. You told me Annie was spelled H-A-T-E. I don't know what it was about it that you disliked so much, and your Mom didn't seem to know either, but hopefully it doesn't hold for all theater, just that one. I hope to take you to some cool performances someday. I've thought about taking you to the ballet (not something super high on my list of fun things to do), but I think it would be a really interesting thing to experience, and if I went with you, I know I could enjoy it. Maybe the opposite could be true too.
One of the fun features of that shiny new school of yours that we love so much has shown itself this month: winter electives. Your old school either didn't do them, or didn't do them for your grade. Either way, it amounts to the same thing. But your new school offers a different activity one day per week in February. So far, you've done swimming only; basically most of your school went to the YMCA and took the place over. Your Mom chaperoned that one too. Next month you get to try gymnastics (something that you've done many times, as we had you in classes before), and then its skating at an outdoor rink, and I am chaperoning that one. I am really excited to take part in something to do with your school life, even if its just an afternoon at the rink.
Speaking of outdoor activities, you and I went out for our second year of downhill skiing, and it was fantastic. Things started out slowly, and in the beginning you were leaning on me to do a lot of the work for you. So we held hands a lot and I think we were both getting a little frustrated. But once you started to feel confident enough, and I encouraged you enough, you tried snowplowing, turning on your own. And after that, there was no looking back. By the end of the day, you were able to get down the hill all on your own. Sure there were plenty of falls, some accidental, and some where you fell back when you were getting scared or felt out of control (I was so happy that you listened to me on that one). But you had a great time, and want to go back again soon. And as proud of yourself as you were, and should have been, you really liked being able to ride the lift up all by yourself the most.
One noteworthy item this month, is how your playing has becoming more and more sophisticated. I don't know if its the new school or you just developing, but it seems like your play gets more interesting all the time. Since xmas, you have been playing with this one special doll that your Mom's parents got for you, and you've taken to calling her your sister. She's one of these handmade dolls that has their own name, fitted clothing, etc. It looks pretty lifelike actually, and you like to play together, get read to and tucked in together. You've taken it outside with you to play, and have generally become quite attached to it. Your Mom and I took this to mean that maybe you would want a sibling after all, so we asked you how you felt about it, to which you promptly responded no, that your doll is the only sister you need.
So one of the things that all this leads to is that I am going to stay home every morning to put you on the bus. Your Mom chafes at this one a bit, because up until now, that has been her domain, but if I only stay another 10-15 minutes later and it means I get to put my little girl on the bus, its worth it to me. Another thing this is likely to lead to is a family vacation. Your Mom and I have talked over the last few years about taking you to a certain place in Florida that's mostly for kids. Think castles, rides, animated mouses with big ears. So we are doing some digging into that and seeing if we can make it work. I hope to have more to tell you on that one in later letters.
I love you,