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Monday, June 19, 2006

post-weekend recoup

i meant to post yesterday. to write of dads' lost. and found. of how much i miss mine. of how great it is to see how my girls look at theirs. and to wish my mom a happy birthday. and to tell her the house next door is still for sale...!

but i didn't. we had d's mom and older brother and his wife over for a bbq. and five of my nine nieces. and it was hot. 100 degrees. so we stayed in the pool. and talked. and laughed. and dumped each other off the inflatable raft. then d's older sister and her husband showed up with ice cream and sprinkles (oooh sprinkles!) and when they all finally cleared out i fell onto the bed with our little bugs and slept...

big.cousins
cousin.soup
big.feet

i love my nieces. ranging in ages from 3 to 21. i love watching the older ones. how they interact in seemingly secret ways. how they play at being camera shy while they glow, somewhat unknowingly, with the self-confidence of youth. how they carefully attend to the little ones. i love watching the younger ones. how they are completely at ease with each other, having known each other all their lives. how they clown for the camera, completely at ease with who they are. how they carefully watch the older ones and try to mimic their antics.

god. i think of these young women and wonder where life will take them. it is so hard growing up as a girl today. (this book has been recommended to me but i am almost afraid to read it. anyone out there that has? any other good books to recommend on the subject?) what joys will come their way? they are talented and beautiful and young and the world is theirs. what trials and tribulations will they face? is there any way that i can protect them? even just a little? i can't really. they will live. do their own (wonderful) thing. fail. succeed. and grow. how blessed i am to be able to watch it all...

i hope everyone had as wonderful a fathers' day as we did. love to all those daddy-o's out there...

14 comments:

two trees said...

meant to write you a little note, to let you know i was thinking of you. but i didn't, i was in the pool too. glad to heat there were smiles to be had. hugs to you tracy! shanna

this single spark said...

Okay... this is a scary book to read. (I know, I'm the one who recommended it, but I'm commenting anyway!) BUT, even though I don't have kids, I found it really interesting and useful. I've been dragging around all kinds of baggage from my teen years, and I've really been putting it away as I read through this. Not just a warning of the pitfalls of raising girls, but a self help book for all those who used to be teen girls. Makes me almost appreciate those ugly, awkward years.

melissa f. said...

great post, tracy. and (of course) lovely pics.

lisa s said...

i want to come swim... sigh... great pics...

i am with you on growing up now... girl or boy. it just seems to get harder and harder? how is that possible?

i haven't read that book... but maybe i should - i keep wondering what the heck is going on w/ some of my younger female students... maybe it'd help?

amy h said...

I miss my dad, too! Couldn't bring myself to dwell on it too much yesterday though.

I haven't read that book. I am already scared of raising an adolescent girl, and she's only one year old. Those years are just so awkward. I can only hope hers are better than mine were!

mo&ash said...

this made us feel special
the pictures are amazing
the spinkles were very nice (so were the waffle bowls)

we are like weeds (the ones that are puffy and white) and we grow ourselves but we like people.

i hate to quote someone else (or the name of an ep that they made, if you haven't heard it you should listen)
don't be afraid of turning the page

stephanie said...

great post. can't tell you how good that pool and sunshine looks to me right now (not quite summer yet here).

i've read the book (when mia was still a baby) and i recommend it. i think that many parents' reaction to the prospect of their daughters growing older is fear, and i think that girls really pick up on that. it's great to hear the sense of wonder that you have in regard to your daughters' futures.

Julie said...

Hi, Tracy! I'm reading it right now, in fact (for the second time) -- it's a little alarmist and overblown, I think, but worth reading. My primary rules for raising a girl are not to ever comment on what she's eating and not to pick her clothes or comment on her body. except to say "cute shirt!" I also see my job as just to affirm her choices -- so far, so good -- and trust her -- again, so far, so good -- but unobtrusively verify! I check her myspace page now and again (so far, so good).

Tracy said...

thanks everyone! you are all invited over for a pool party!

i'm going to pick up the book and read it... let you know what i think...

i am thinking of you amy h - i rely on the good memories to pull me through...

mo and ash. you are so so special!!!

julie - i like your "rules". is your daughter a teen?

lindsey starr said...

would have loved to have been in that pool too- looks like they had so much fun! It was 94 here and humid.
I read that book back in college (15+ years ago), and found it a bit overblown as Julie noted. but at that point I wasn't a parent either. And now I am the parent of 2 boys (despite always thinking I would have girls!)- so it is the book called Real Boys that keeps my attention.
I do think we all just need to be aware, and involved, and not overly authoritative (which makes the kids not want to communicate). You seem aware and wanting to do the right thing, which seems to be more than half the battle. And keeping 'rules' simple as Julie noted for hers. Save the "no's" for important things.
You seem to be a wonderful parent and one who wants to do a good job!

Read the book with a 'grain of salt' and keep up the good work!
-lindsey

lindsey starr said...

okay- my mistake, as this started me thinking, and I realized this isn't the same book I had read, although similar. but in hunting on the internet, found this which was a good summary and view of it in how it can be applied to real life- http://www.sptimes.com/2004/03/12/Northoftampa/Raising_daughters_in_.shtml

Tracy said...

thanks lindsey!

Julie said...

She's 14 -- and you know her -- she's Rose! Sam's niece!!

Tracy said...

hi julie!!! hi rose!!!