Sunday, April 27, 2014


Dear Beauty, 

You turned seventeen a few weeks ago. I'm sorely behind on this letter, although I have thought about what I wanted to write frequently, such as: how can you be so old already? I know it's cliche for adults to say stuff like that, but it's the truth. 

Weren't we just celebrating your 6th birthday...when I actually talked a dispatcher into sending a real ambulance and paramedics to our house for your party, so all the kids could see what a real ambulance looked like on the inside? 

You wanted a hospital-themed birthday party that year where kids could weigh themselves on a scale, listen to their heart beat with a real doctor's stethoscope, and use child-sized crutches. Of course, there was the overzealous guest who made you cry by putting band-aids over every single one of your babydolls' eyes. Regardless of that one snafu, it remains in the top three of best parties I've ever thrown. 

And then you had to go and do this:

That first day you drove by yourself to school,
you drove off with my heart.

We toured colleges over spring break a couple weeks ago. I was both excited for your bright future, as well as feeling overwhelmed with the realization that you will be headed off to college and on your own in less then two years. Maybe I should follow you and go back to school to pursue my college degree after all? JUST KIDDING.

And I'll be completely honest: I've bought into all the hype about high test scores, perfect GPA's and a well-rounded college resume. Although it's coming from the best intentions, I have literally made myself sick behind it and brought you an unfair additional amount of stress. It's a completely different world than when I was in high school, and I cannot fathom the pressures that you've faced as a teenager. Truthfully? No employer has ever asked me what my high school GPA was. You are going to get into a great college. 

Touring UCSC...where we saw Don-freaking-Cheadle!
Today was a special day; we spent the afternoon together shopping for a prom dress, shoes and accessories, and, if everything goes according to plan, your sweet boyfriend is asking you tonight to his senior prom as I write this. I love seeing you in love, and I couldn't be happier for you. This whole thing with your friend Samo's health has affected me deeply. My biggest fear as a parent is to outlive you or your brother, and it's been a reminder of how precious family and childhood are. I want you to know how much you are treasured, and to look back on your childhood and our crazy family with fond memories. 

Last year's birthday present: Cooper.
The gift that keeps on giving!

Performing with your brother and Dishwalla drummer
George Pendergast for Big Daddy's epic birthday party!
It was one of the best days of your father's life.

Your brother! I don't even know what to say about this picture.
You, me and Aunt Erika with friends at the Warrior Dash!
You were a very good sport.
Sparklers to celebrate your birthday at Theo and Thea's house.
I love this face so very much.
Happy 17th birthday, Beauty!

You are truly one of my favorite people. All my love always...



  1. Replies
    1. You are always so kind, Cristy. Speaking of 'love', I was realizing how much I use little emoticons and smiley faces with my kids. It was an act of restraint not to do so here, although I did try and make a <3 and Blogger FREAKED and thought it was some crazy HTML code...

  2. Replies
    1. Thank you, Dala. That means so much to me. It also sounds *exactly* like something I might say :)

  3. Saw this on Team Samo. Relate to every bit of it! I think it is quite miraculous that I gave birth to my two fav people on the planet, my sons. Who would have thougt? They are my gold and I am facing the all too fast desent to an empty nest. I'm trying to be brave but man, this is hard.

    1. Hi Carolyn! Thank you for leaving a comment on my blog. I hear you about how hard it is to be brave as our kids move towards independence and adulthood. This year has zipped by, but I am trying my best to enjoy my family without getting too overwhelmed. Wishing you the best with you boys!

  4. This is lovely. You chose perfect pictures, too :-)

    1. Given your gorgeous blog and eye for photography, this is the sweetest compliment. Thanks, Em!