Posts Tagged ‘friends’

Back in October, a sweet little girl in Norway saw a picture of the Fairy Princess Ballerina,

and traded in her pink leopard costume for this:


Quit an impressive knock-off.

Late last week, Grandma Penny was strolling through Paris and saw this:


Notice anything? Look again.


That looks remarkably similar to this:


Poor Grammy thought her Ava had come for a surprise visit to Paris.

Her coat has made it across the deep blue sea, perhaps the rest of her is soon to follow.

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shiny happy people

A couple of months ago, Ava was telling me about her friend at church. Generally these conversations consist of what Ava and her friend did together and what type of shoes this particular friend was wearing. This time her description ended with “and she’s black.”

“She has black shoes?”

“No. She’s black.”

This was the first time that I had ever heard Ava make any reference to someone’s skin color and to my knowledge the first time that the subject of race had ever come up in front of her.

So many of the children in our church, our community, and Ava’s preschool are of different ethnicities than Ava. She was born in a hospital that speaks sixty-some different languages on any given day and has been surrounded by myriad of colors ever since.

My early childhood was pale in comparison. Any subtlety of color stood out on a palette of white. So I have often wondered if she would ever notice the variations of skin tones. And if so, how would she articulate them.

Now here it was. Ava wasn’t talking about a new friend, but a girl that she known her whole life. A girl she was dedicated with and now accompanies her to preschool. I have heard many descriptions about this friend, but this was first time that she had called her black.

I wasn’t sure if someone had told her this or if she came up with “black” on her own, so I asked her, “Well, Ava, what are you?”

She tilted her head and laughed at my absurdity.

“Mama, I’m shiny.”

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After an over-extended family reunion, the local clouds parted ways and the bright blue sky reigned over a balmy day of twenty-five degrees above zero. In hopes of making the most of this atmospheric anomaly, Ava and I packed up our skates, gathered up our friends, and headed outside for our monthly dose of Vitamin D.


Girls, haven’t you heard, it’s twenty-five degrees. You don’t need a car in this perfect walking weather.


As you can see the Vitamin D has lots of opportunity for absorption. Sunscreen is severely overrated. Here, in the upper mid-west, we believe in layers. And we apply our layers generously. Come on Sun, do you worst. I just dare you to give me a tan.


Ava and Lydia were basically born on the ice.

Unlike Ava’s desert-grown mama, who kept whining about being cold.

Seriously, it was twenty-five degrees ABOVE zero. Would someone please remind her that it was fifty below zero last week thanks to the deadly wind chill? And she should be singing hallelujah over the seventy-five degree increase.

Luckily, Ruthie was there to help guide the frozen princess around the ice.


Thanks Ruthie, you’re a trooper. Next time feel free to loan her your snow pants or Smart Wool socks, I’m fairly certain they won’t fit, but they might curb her whining.

Ruthie was also a fearless leader in the critical ice game, Shuffle, Shuffle, Fall. It’s like Ring Around the Rosies, except you don’t hold hands or sing, and you fall down on ice. I’m fairly certain it will catch on.

Thanks to Kirsten, the girl’s mama and photographer extraordinaire (anyone brave enough to take a camera on ice is extraordinary in my book), we learned the fundamentals of falling on ice. I would not have known the importance of this as sand is always gracious to the clumsy. Not so with ice. You must put your cushiest part forward, that being your behind.

Ruthie, Lydia, and Ava chanted “Shuffle, shuffle” with each swish of their skate until someone yelled, “Fall” and they would all try to fall on their bums. Then they would get back up on their skates by themselves, (a feat I’m still impressed by) and do it again (also a feat I’m impressed by).

Ruthie and Lydia were more talented at the back-fall than the forwarding falling Ava as was evidenced by the six minor bruises that appeared this morning equally distributed between her knees.

There is, however, only so much falling on ice that two three-year-olds can endure. They went down for the last time,


realized that the ice was in fact cold and hard,


and crawled, “wee, wee, wee” all the way back to the snow bank, where they found an orange sled.


Take it from these girls, Shuffle, Shuffle, Fall is much better when you land on a mound of white fluff.

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Today, I was chatting with Shanel on the phone (which honestly happens everyday, so no matter what day you read this, the statement will undoubtedly be true). So as I was saying today I was chatting with Shanel on the phone when she asked me if I had noticed a glove that she had misplaced the night before.

Since my house is spotless (this statement is most assuredly only true today, February 5th. This is primarily due to the contest I am having with Nate and winning by the way) I knew there was no such glove in the house. I told her that I would check the stairway and foyer to see if it was out there.

As I meandered down the stairway telling her all the things Ava had put her mouth today, I spied a large box on our shoe rack.

“I don’t see your gloves, but it looks like we got a package.”

“What kind of package?”

“I don’t know. Probably something for Nate. He’s always ordering some sort of technology. I have no idea. I swear he gets some sort of package every week. I’m always like ‘what is that?’ and he’s like ‘oh it’s a cord or a cable or … I don’t know something.’ Wait this is for me.”

“What is it?”

“I don’t know; it’s from some outdoor company. I don’t remember ordering anything.”

Baffled I carried the box up the stairs through the house into the kitchen still babbling away with Shanel. Ava walked into the kitchen from the other side and spied the big box in my arm.

“Is that for me? Is that for me? Did I get a present?” she asked, hopping up and pulling down my arm. “Who’s it from? Is it for me?”

“No, it’s for me.”

I pulled open the drawer and was surprised to see scissors. First a package for me, then finding scissors on the first try, this day couldn’t possibly get better.

I sliced through the tape and found this note:

You are my most favorite Mama ever! You’re the best Mama in the world!

Love, Ava

And then I saw this:


and this:


And then Ava saw this:


and this:


So she grabbed her Uggs and joined the fun:


Look at us: matching sweaters, matching Uggs, matching grins. This reminds me of this:

Ahh, would you look at that, Mama Ugg and Baby Ugg reunited at last:


How Ava came up with the funds to reward her “most favorite Mama” with Uggs is beyond us.

I suppose if babies are now trading stock on E*trade, ordering Uggs online can’t be all that much more complicated, can it?

And perhaps Uggs is marketing to a younger audience. Just this past Sunday, Ava and I were in line to check her into the church nursery when we heard a little voice behind us saying, “Mama look. That girl has Uggs like me.”

Did I mention we were in line for the nursery? With the way Ava is setting trends around here we are all going to be licking our shoes within the week or at least gnawing on cardboard boot shapers.

Oh, how can I mock her at a time like this? She and her mysterious benefactor just gave me Uggs.

And did you hear, I’m her most favorite Mama!

P.S. Will the real M.B. (Mysterious Benefactor) please stand up??


Psst Toes, ignore the weatherman. Warmer days have just arrived!

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