You know that happy-sad feeling that sweeps over you sometimes? The one where you are not sure which emotion is the stronger of the two? That feeling made me feel just a bit wobbly on my feet this past weekend. It started at my toes and rose up to my heart and I took a deep breath...and let it out. I just stood for awhile and stared at my girl. She was laughing about something with her friend who had come over for a sleepover. She had her hand over her mouth and I could see her cute dimple and her ponytail swishing. She looked so tall. She wore bigger shoes than I do. She looked so sophisticated and self-assured. How could she have grown up so fast?
I remember the first time I saw that dimple. I had just been handed my perfect little treasure, after 30 hours of labor, an emergency cesarean, and two hours in recovery waiting to hold her. The nurse handed her to me and I examined her from teeny bald head to tiny toes. I stopped suddenly and stared: "What's THAT?" I asked. I had never seen a dimple on a baby before! It was the cutest thing ever. I was smitten. For life.
And what a 12 years it has been. She is such a joy, a delight, an absolute necessity in my life. I adore her. She's not a breath of fresh air, she's a tornado. She starts each day like a volcano erupting into morning. She is wide awake instantly, full of amazing thoughts..telling me about her ideas, her dreams, her inventions, her projects, her plans and lists for the day. I smile at her and squeak out one word...cooooooffeeeeee.......
She laughs at me, gives me one of her famous squeezy hugs, and goes off to make me a cup of coffee. After we sit together and she drinks a third of a cup of tea and leaves the cup on the windowsill for the rest of the day.....and I have my coffee, I am ready for her bouncy attack on the day. Thank heavens for my daily mug of energy! Chena and coffee just go together.
So when I asked her what she would like to do for her birthday party, I was not surprised when she said she would love a sledding party. Chena is my outside girl. She loves to be outside, even in all kinds of weather. Its hard to get her to wear a coat or the right shoes. She might be caught outside in Crocs in the midst of winter.
She loves to sled. Sometimes we even sled on top of hay bales when we go out at night to feed all the horses. We laugh until we fall off the bale and roll over in the snow. She loves it.
So we had a sledding party, and invited about 20 of her friends and cousins. It was a really fun day! Perfect sledding weather. I didn't even mind that I wiped out on a wild ride with my little nephew at the steering wheel.
Ok everybody, smile and I will actually let you sled and I will put the camera away.
(crossing fingers behind my back) Sure! I promise!
After the sledding we all went in the house and had big slices of sloppy pizza, and custom-decorated Eskimo Pies...with M & Ms, caramel, whip cream, chopped cookie pieces, chocolate syrup and sprinkles.
It was a great day and a great way to celebrate the birth of my snow angel.