See that cute little blue eye peeking out from Elizabeth's cheek? That's my vintage 1978 Sindy doll, recently unearthed in the move, and Elizabeth has fallen in love with her. I wish I still had some of the furniture and cute little outfits. Sindy beats the tar out of Barbie in my opinion. Cuter and WAY classier. (Check out this classic commercial of Cindy Brady selling the Sindy doll!) I'm tempted to get another one on ebay as a Christmas present - one that hasn't had her hair put in a high ponytail for the last 30 years, making it impossible to do anything but stand straight up in a bun. Elizabeth doesn't seem to mind though. It's so fun to have little girls. Speaking of which, next picture please . . .
Could she be any cuter? I'll admit, letting her manuever her own cart around the store while I'm trying to do serious grocery shopping takes a bit of time and often causes a tantrum or two, but this time around she was very mature about her responsibility. She was taking her job VERY seriously, throwing stuff in left and right, with a look on her face like she was THE STUFF!
No cute picture, but since I'm talking about the girls, now that Kate officially starts middle school TOMORROW we did the unthinkable: we got her a cell phone. And I have to admit, I'm so glad we did. Just today, three cute girls in the neighborhood came by and invited her to walk about a mile and a half away to get shaved ice at Snoasis (my new favorite treat - can't believe I've lived almost 39 years without trying this stuff!), and we had some friends coming by "soon" from California, so guess what? I CALLED her once they got here to let her know I was on my way to pick her up, and to make sure she was still there and not on the road. Nice! I do wish there had been cell phones around when I was a teenager. There were gobs of times when I would have been thrilled and relieved if I'd had the ability to call or text my parents, and I'm sure they would have been as well! (Then there's that nice little GPS feature in case the phone gets "turned off" accidentally . . . not too worried about that yet.)
I've had that usual end of the summer feeling: bittersweet. Every new school year means my children are growing up and away, and with Kate going to middle school, and Elizabeth going all day as a first grader, it's an especially bittersweet year. It will just be me and Rachael for the next FOUR YEARS until she is an all day first grader. Wow. (You know that's bittersweet too.) I thoroughly summertime when all my little munchies are under one roof - making our own plans, being on our own schedule, bonding with each other in ways we don't during the school year. This summer has been especially sweet that way. Since they haven't really made any new friends yet, and we've spent so much time "on the road", they've really learned to rely on each other for friendship. Despite their age differences, I've watched them work and play together all summer long, and I've been holding on to every single minute, wondering when it's going to come to an end. I'm afraid this might be the year. I mean, can a 13-year-old middle schooler really still have fun with her 9-year-old brother? I hope I'm wrong. I thought it would come to an end after the summer she was 10, so maybe they really have built bonds to last through the teen years. We'll see, I guess.
This last week has pretty much pushed us all over the edge, though. The kids have been gravitating way too much to the screens, complaining of boredom, it's getting harder for me to get myself (let alone them) motivated to have both fun and productive days . . . it's time! Today really cinched the deal: a botched trip with all four kids to the shoe store coming home empty handed, and getting lost and being a half hour late to the county health clinic for Hep A shots complete with tears, screaming and complaining about "arm cramps" for the next hour.
Tomorrow there will be a collective sigh (and probably a few tears) from mothers all over Utah County as our dear little darlings start another blessed year of public school.