If you are new to this blog, you might not know we brought the girls home 5 1/2 yrs ago. BGA was 6 and LGA was 4. It doesn't seem like 5 1/2 yrs have passed but they have. Lots of changes in the girls and in our lives since they came home.
I'm going to try and dig up some pictures of BGA over the years for her birthdays. I don't know how many I will have. I missed a year of camera pics last year when my mom died, I just didn't shoot them but did take some cell camera pics so will look for them and post.
BGA came home one angry little girl. It was hard to get through to her sometimes. I felt she'd never attach to us and she would be angry in her life a lot. She still has a bit of what I know to be the 'red haired' temper but she's learning ways to over come it. Dave went through it, being a red head. My mother and brother each had red hair and tempers. BGA's teacher is going to enroll her in a social type of session with the counselor to work on social relationships. We tried to get this going at her previous school but the counselor would not try it. The teacher didn't ask me if I wanted her to meet with the counselor, she just TOLD me BGA would be going. Ok. I did agree but what if I had said no to it, would I have had a choice? I don't mind because we all agree she needs some work on relationships with her peers. She has come so far, but this is one piece of the puzzle we have not been able to help her with. I hope the counselor (a neutral party) can help her. She's had a lot to overcome and I am amazed at the young woman (wow, I am saying that, my little girl is becoming a young woman) she is becoming.
I have seen lots of blossoming behaviors I never thought I'd see in the beginning.
BGA is kind. Oftentimes I will pick her up and she will tell me she gave her 'prize' or something she got in class, to another classmate who seemed down. She will offer us and her sister food or treats, as well. She ate the candy out of the Hello Kitty pez but gave the dispenser to her sister who she knew had sweet tarts and could put them in the pez to eat. She will stop and help others. I never saw this behavior in the beginning. In the beginning a lot of behavior was about "me" what can I get for me. I really like seeing this part of her develop. It makes me think she will be compassionate when she's older.
BGA has a pretty laugh and she cracks up at a lot of stuff. She's excited and enthusiastic about what she sees and is interested in. At 12 she is reading more, (even though I don't think she likes to read as much, which is disappointing to me as I love to read. But we're working on it) and likes books about nature and bugs/animals, and some mysteries, some chapter books. She likes quoting facts and riddles. I like to hear her make up riddles. She likes to sing and has her radio, cd's on a lot. She still likes her cd player on for bedtime and will listen to chapter books on CD or music.
BGA has grown this year in height. I feel puberty is not far off for her. She is almost as tall as me, a fact she likes to point out, often. LOL. She has developed her taste of clothes as well. The girls grew in height but not much in weight, so their jeans were like a few inches shorter than last year. I had to buy new jeans as BGA is still a bit petite and LGA at 3 yrs younger has caught up to BGA in shoes and top sizes (jeans she's still a size smaller). I shopped at a great thrift store I found that had great brand name jeans. I scored luckily, and also managed to pick some tops out for her that she liked. She's not so much into the t'shirts with designs on them as she is in shirts and pretty tops rather than just plain old t's with a design on them. She picks her wardrobe out every day and loves to go pick out what she will wear. She's getting better at matching too as we work on what goes with what. I bought her thrifted jeggings and some skinny jeans at Target that fit her perfectly. She is developing a shape too. My girl is growing up.
We have time together in the car as I am now taking her to/from school as Dave's working 10 hour days now till the end of the year. So we have lots of time to chat about stuff. She is loving and likes to give hugs a lot and still tells me, "mommy I LOVE you." I know this will change, so I am taking advantage of it now and I hope it stays around a long time. I know puberty and teen years are hard and can change her but I hope that we can keep some of this around a long time. We still get the sighs and eye rolling as every kid does, and the addition of mumbling under her breath, but she has not figured out how to do that without being heard. I thought that was hilarious till Dave told her what she was doing so now she's getting better at lowering her voice.
I love how she comes up with ideas of things to do and things she wants to try. I need to remember to indulge her more. I do to some extent, but sometimes life gets in the way. I want to indulge her creative side more too. She has one, and it's just coming out.
So as we face 12, I look forward to seeing the young lady she becomes. She's beautiful to me in every way and I compliment both her and LGA, I want them to seem themselves as beautiful as they haven't sometimes, and that makes me sad. I always tell the girls they are but too many times girls are defined by a certain body image they feel they have to achieve. So I am very conscious about it and watching that side. What I have seen lately is BGA eating healthy and choosing to eat fruits and veg (while still eating some junky foods, you just can't avoid it if you have kids that were exposed to it as ours were) and she will eat what I cook even though she's a bit on the picky side still, but her palate is expanding which makes me happy. I found out she prefers chicken thighs to chicken breasts (Dave prefers chicken breasts) as we ate teriyaki chicken thighs and she inhaled them. One thing she has continuously requested when we go out for dinner is soda. I am not sure if she's getting it at school but I am trying to tell her how it's not great for her and has a lot of sugar (I don't drink it, very rarely will I have a soda, Dave drinks diet now and mostly drinks water or tea but does get the occasional soda) in it and is not very good for her ADHD. I don't know how long I can keep that one at bay but hoping for a bit longer.
Here are a few pics of BGA's birthdays over the years.
10th birthday (looking so much older)
11th birhday. Didn't think I had pics but I did find two.
I love this girl and I am excited to celebrate this birthday with her. Here's to many more and to seeing the young woman she becomes. I'm excited for her. I'll post some pics of her actual birthday once we've had her dinner and cake.