Friday, March 25, 2016

Letter to (Six Year and Ten Month Old) Ann Peyton

Dear Ann Peyton,

This letter seems shorter than most. I really have no idea why. It mostly encompasses January, which wasn't an especially busy month if I remember correctly. I do have some fun anecdotes to share with you, though.

Besides finding out that our new baby is a girl, it was mostly an uneventful, ordinary month. I actually really like those, though, and you seem to thrive during more laid back times with a consistent routine yourself.

The weather was weird (it was such a mild Winter even for Mississippi) but one night when it was still pretty cold, Papa decided it would be a brilliant idea to bring yours and Graves's jams to the Y since y'all went to the late Family Swim. Then he decided it'd be even more brilliant to just get y'all to wear your pjs. Of course you chose the Tail End flap jacks and Hello Kitty knock off crocs. You looked hysterical and I definitely took a picture. 

I also took a picture of you turning the page of a book because your hands were sticky because you were mid banana pancake DeeDee made for you but you just couldn't bear to stop reading.

We watched Inside Out and it was such a gift for all of us. We had some BIG emotional outburst over having to finish math before going to the park/library and we decided to let you cool down (and pretend to be getting dressed to walk there alone) while the rest of us watched the movie. As you undressed in a bit of defeat and asked us to help you pull off one of the 6 pair of pant layers you'd suited up in, you were immediately captivated by the movie. You sat on the couch beside Papa and watched the entire thing. It was probably our first real "family movie" experience where we laughed, cried, and discussed the movie in depth. Papa mentioned that Inside Out does a masterful job of providing parents (and kids) with a tool to discuss emotions. You often move away from showing sadness and are pretty good at being angry and the movie gave us some jumping off conversations to that subject. You finished up your math thanks (in part) to that great tool Pixar gifted to parents like ourselves.

Recently, you said to me "The other day at naptime I spent most of my time on history. Which, I don't usually do history in the Picturepedia book. I usually do nature." You gave a little chuckle and said "No wonder, right?" Yes, Annie, no wonder. Also, I DO wonder how many hours you've clocked in that thing. It is an amazing volume.

You also told me recently that I should NEVER run with an ostrich. Because humans run so much slower than ostriches and then I'd be behind the ostrich and he would most likely kick me. It would only be okay if I was in a "motor vehicle".

As I mentioned, we found out that the baby is a girl. Graves was so upset and I got upset myself and the appointment had been so, so very long. As excited as I was in many ways, I was so tired. Between your exhausted, out preformed yourself  with good manners at the doctor's meltdowns over television shows and mittens you realized that you didn't even really want baby kittens because "the momma cat might get sick" (you had told yous previously that you were only having kittens, no human babies when you grow up) and subsequently began talking about the parrot you will have as an adult women in lieu of children while going back and forth between telling us that maybe we can adopt a boy sometime down the road because you "just want us to be happy" and reminding us that our sadness is perfectly okay. You are so kind and so wise. 

It's so funny because a few days later I ran across an old picture where you had been telling me you wanted to trade Graves for a "sister baby". It was years and years ago, but I'm glad you're finally getting one of those. I sure loved mine!

School is still going really well and recently, I had the task of explaining to you (my sometimes stubborn thinker) why poetry is classified as nonfiction (because "sometimes, Momma, poetry can be a pretend story, you know?"). Aside: we had exactly ONE fiction book in our collection for the "pretend to be a librarian and sort these books". You such a little researcher! 

Oh, and Graves was all over the place during y'alls joint "morning school" time one morning and you  finally took it into your own hands and tried to distract him by telling him "there's some really amazing carrion over there". You also started calling him an Irratator, which was apparently a type of meat eating dinosaur.

You are certainly not baby obsessed like Graves but you are such a caregiver in a different way. You had a bit of a sore throat one night and you said "maybe someone could boil me some tea while I read to Graves and try to get him to sleep". Then you told me about a conversation you had with him in which you reminded him that y'all "have all of naptime" to play in your room and suggested that you just read to him at night.

You also told me that "Graves and Papa just, like, go to sleep much earlier than we do". I've started letting you hang out with me after the rest of the house goes to bed. You in the study and read mostly to yourself, telling me the most interesting things. You follow me to the kitchen and laundry room. You get yourself a drink and I hear every light switch click off on her way back. You are so, so old now.

Momma (and Papa)

P.S. The kitty dress you're wearing is either a 4T or a 5T. I got it ages ago from one of my favorite vendors at the Brooklyn Flea. It's fair trade and made in Brooklyn and you have loved this dress to pieces. Papa loved it so much, too. It became one of my favorites, partly, I think because it's so "you". Before we moved back last Spring, I had gotten you some black and white leggings (now that I think about it, I actually got them so you could wear it in some family pictures we had made that Fall- over a year ago). It's pretty much become a tunic and you can only wear it with leggings and it still be appropriate. We've gotten two solid years of wear out of it, though! Also, you'll notice that we keep adding more and more Beanie Boos to these shots (in this one you have Midnight the owl, Freeze the penguin, Sugar Pie the unicorn, and Slick the Fox).

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