So another year has gone by. Its been quite a year for all of us.
I guess its been a tough year for everyone. Tougher on you maybe than anyone. Your Mom and I split up last year, and I know that rocked your world pretty hard. I am convinced though, that it was the best decision for everyone, after a very, very long period of trying to work through an unhappy marriage for fear of what ending it might do to everyone involved (but mostly you).
Your Mom has moved on, and I am honestly glad that she has. We all deserve to be happy. Moving the home you share with her to a place out in the country was hard on you, and I know that. I also know that you're having a hard time adjusting to the new family dynamic there; a new man in your Mom's life, a new potential future sibling in yours. You are taking it very well, and I hope that you continue to be ok with the changes you're faced with. You have a terrific support network in your Aunts, Uncles, lots of Grandparents, friends, your Mom, me. I hope you always know how much all of us support you, and that these changes to everyone's lives have done not one thing to change how much everyone loves you.
And who knows what changes the new year will be bring? You are a resilient, remarkable girl, and any changes I am responsible for will be as well thought out as I can make them. I want you to be happy, and safe, and loved in my home, just as I am certain that your Mom does.
For when you are with me, you've really seemed to take well to the home I have made for us. I put bunk beds in your room so you can have sleepovers with friends, with family. You've had some good sleepovers with both, and I chuckle when I hear you and whoever is over talking late, giggling. I love knowing that you are happy in my place. I also built a little ramp attached to your bunk beds for the new friend in our lives, a cat we rescued from the humane society. Lulu took awhile to figure out what to do with it, but after seeding it with treats she finally figured out that she can use it to get access to the top bunk, which you prefer. That cat is one of The World's Greatest Snugglers. Also, she bites people's legs when they walk by her sometimes. What do you want? She's a cat.
During the summer months at our place, you and I spent a lot of time playing on the beach and in the lake. We got kayaks, and sometimes toured the shorelines close to home. We also went on our annual camping trip and ended up doing an afternoon paddle to a nearby lake. The wind came up and it got pretty tough to paddle back. But you were amazing, not giving up. I was very proud.
You continue to make me smile and provide a source of joy to my life that I would never have believed possible. You and I remain very close, and share our secrets and stories together like I could have only hoped. You talk to me about boys now (yuck). Fairly regularly. (Did I mention yuck?)
We are almost done reading all the Harry Potter books. We're just finishing the 6th book as I type this. You still LOVE the world of these books and continue to cosplay as Hermione Grainger when we go to Fan Expo each year. We went again this year, and got to attend a reunion and Q and A with some of the cast. And about 5,000 other fans. It was awesome. I went as a Slytherin. Cause I'm so bad. :)
So other things that happened since we last talked. You lost a great dog, who got to spend a large part of her life with her favourite kid (you). You lost some teeth, and grew a lot. I think you are going to be taller than me sooner than I'm comfortable with. lol.
I tried to take you on as many adventures as I could this year, and that meant road trips to see family, do different things. We made pizza at this cool restaurant with your cousins, and visited a seagull nesting ground with your Grandpa. We went away for March Break and spent most of the week in Toronto. Medieval Times, a Disney on Ice show that you were just too old for. I took you out for dinners, and tried new things like tube sliding, and skating at night. We went to a Marvel live action show (which we both loved) and a Highland Games competition at a Spring Fair (which we both agreed was pretty boring). We did Canada Day in Ottawa for the first time, and brought Grandpa along. That was pretty crazy, but the best part of it was the 2 hour bus ride home and the fact that we somehow got ahead of about 100,000 people waiting for their own lift.