Crew is Seven.

It’s official — seven is it. It’s when you stop being little and are a full. blown. KID.

You have matured in all kinds of ways this year – physically, emotionally, socially, academically, I could go on and on. You’ve had a lot of growth opportunities as you’ve left kindergarten for the big leagues of first grade, and the expectations have been a great challenge you’ve (mostly) risen to. šŸ˜‰ You are excelling in school, continue to be a fantastic reader, but your love of math has taken over. You love that there’s a single concrete answer and constantly ask to be quizzed on math facts, and you’re highly motivated by the idea of doing something other first graders “aren’t doing yet”– which has propelled you into learning multiplication and division concepts. Competition and the idea of being first will be the key to your success, I believe šŸ˜‰

You have a passion for soccer and while you prefer Dad, you’ll beg either of us to practice on evenings it’s warm enough, and you play every day at recess as well. You participated in both spring and fall rec leagues and are in the middle of your second year of indoor winter training. Soccer, too, comes with all the lessons and growth opportunities, but the joy and determination we see rises above everything else. When you’re truly motivated by something, you have a dedication and a work ethic that can’t be denied.

Honorable mentions in the “favorites” category also include Dad and hot tubbing. šŸ™‚

The remainder of your school year as a kindergartner still had its interruptions — you were exposed at a lunch table and I got the call to come pick you up and quarantine for the following week. I can’t share this story without noting your amazing teacher — after 1/3 of her class was suddenly whisked home, she did an incredible job of keeping you all in the loop from home as she continued to teach in the classroom.

We got that last Covid related school interruption out of the way and took a bit of a Hail Mary vacation to Arizona. It was the first time in months we’d been able to go do activities without masks and the warm temps and sunshine were just what we needed after a lonnnnng winter. One of my favorite quotes of yours this past year was on our last day. “Guys! We have to come back but visit new places, too. There is so much life to see!” All the motivation we need to keep making adventures happen.

You wrapped up kindergarten and we could not have been more proud of you, your teacher, and your peers for completing such a crazy year with tenacity and enthusiasm. (It felt more than fitting that you won the classroom award for biggest vocabulary!) The school year coincided with the rollout of vaccines for adults, warmer weather/more outside time, and consequently dropping case numbers which led to the removal of the mask requirement in your final days of the school year. We looked forward eagerly to a NORMAL summer.

We probably overcommitted in our excitement, but you participated in numerous camps and sports that kept us going all June, July, and August. I regret nothing about our go-go-go summer…it was pure bliss to have so many great experiences after a year-plus of not much going on! Per usual, I subjected you to your annual half birthday shoot — this was a particularly fun memory of the two of us exploring around downtown and you coming up with all kinds of poses šŸ˜‰

One little lady in particular loved having you around more during those warm months. šŸ™‚ It’s so fun to watch your bond continue to grow and while there are times you can all but ignore her, you are also fiercely protective and you always manage to have your eye on her when it counts.

And just like that, it was on to the next school year, one that was blissfully free of most of the previous year’s rules around distancing and masks. Unlike the previous year, all of the same grade classrooms are allowed to intermingle this year, so it’s been fun to watch your friend circle grow significantly.

The fall seemed to fly and, fueled by a movie marathon with Dad, and a correlating love of magic, you opted to be Harry Potter for Halloween.

We rolled into the magic of the holiday season and another year of elf shenanigans was one of the highlights. You finally, FINALLY, were able to join your many friends who’d lost some teeth, shedding two just before Christmas.

We welcomed the new year and pivoted to birthday time. We celebrated with a PAR-TAY. You wanted boys and girls on your invite list, and thoughtfully chose magic as your theme because you decided that was something everyone would like. We opened gifts and sang with Papa and Mimi at home, then they hung back with Greer so we could go bounce and party at SkyZone with nine of your school friends. It happened to be the last day of winter break, so it was especially fun for you to all see each other after the time off, and burn some energy after several single digit temperature days at home!

(This shirt was too perfect for your theme this year!)

(And even Greer got in on the “magic” with a sparkly dress!)

It was so fun to celebrate you in a big way this year. And, despite some nerves, you treated your friends to a live magic trick šŸ˜‰

Happy birthday, seven-year-old. You are kind, funny, emotionally intelligent beyond your years, and I couldn’t ask for anything better of you. I can’t wait to see what *magic* you have in store for us this coming year. <3