Thursday, September 30, 2010

No Mom Allowed

A few months before I turned 16, I moved to FL. Before the departure, my dad asked me where I would like to go for a special dinner, a 16th birthday tradition he celebrated with each of his daughters. I considered various locations and settled on The Pump Room (Chicago). Looking back I probably chose it largely because it sounded so snobby and I had seen it many times while bumming around Michigan Ave. 

So it was that an evening in January found the two of us having dinner. I, being my most grown-up self, ordered cream of asparagus soup. Imagine my surprise when the soups were brought and I had placed before me a bowl containing nothing but some bright green asparagus tips. Shock must have been evident and my dad asked what was wrong. I leaned toward him and in a conspiratorial whisper I said "Dad, there's no soup?" He looked into my bowl, and hiding a grin he asked me if that was not what I ordered. Just as I was about to answer he said, "Ah, I believe this is what you were waiting for!" As the waiter poured the cream soup into my bowl. The rest of the meal went smoothly and was followed by a carriage ride down Michigan Ave. An evening fit for a sweet sixteen. 

Tonight Teen will embark on her own "Dad and Me" sweet 16 dinner. She chose a fondue restaurant and her dad dutifully made the reservation. He has informed her that dress attire is expected and she seems excited. I will be sad to miss out on her 16th birthday dinner, but I am thrilled for the memories she and her dad are building. Hopefully there is cheese in their fondue pot!
Happy Birthday Teen!!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Career Planning

It starts young these days. Children being asked what they aspire to be and how they will achieve these goals. As parents we run hither and yon (yea for vocab!) giving our children opportunities to experience the world through sports, music, arts, and culture. We strive to broaden their worlds and their knowledge.So, I shouldn't have been surprised by the following exchange with Youngest...

me: "I do not want to hear can't from you anymore. You can if you just try." (insert lecture here)
Youngest: "Oh - so you mean I just need to keep practicing?"
me: "Yes! (sees sun shining through clouds) You can do things if you work for them."
A brief pause in the conversation while she absorbs this information...
Youngest: "Well then, if I keep practicing my rollerskating I'll get better and better. 'Cuz I am getting a little bit better each time."
me: "That is exactly right and it's the same with anything that is hard at first."
Youngest : "So Mom, I can get really good and one day I can get a job at the ROLLER RINK! Or maybe that place with the food and the girls on skates - Sonic!! I could be good enough to work there!"
me: "Uh - yeah...I guess you could."

Youngest, Teen, Boy and Cousins skating over the summer.