Monday, June 10, 2019

Love Notes

The school year has finally come to a close and my children are thrilled to begin their summer vacation! Little do they know that they will not be allowed to forget all the lessons they have learned throughout the school year during these lazy summer months, for I am determined to schedule in "schoolwork time" each and every day during the week. I am especially excited to tutor Emma throughout the summer as she continues to develop her reading and writing skills. She ended the school year on a very high note, earning top honors and marks on her report card. Her teacher wrote a lovely assessment of her work throughout the year, praising her for her literacy and budding interest in writing.

Emma is turning into a mini-Harriet the Spy with her writing. For the past few months, she can be seen carrying a notebook and a pencil or pen around with her. While the other kids are off playing various games, Emma is quietly off to the side in a little corner scribbling a note out furiously. Her notations are often just things she is observing or thoughts that she holds in her mind and heart. She is very private about her writings and does not like to show me her notes, but every once in a while she will leave her notebook out and I can't help but take a peek. Her spelling is very phonetic; the words are often misspelled but if you read it aloud you can see that she has reproduced the spoken sound of the word. I recently shared a note of hers on Instagram that I found next to her cereal bowl one morning. It read:

"I love you Dad.
Hapee Fathrs Daye.
you love evreeone in yoor famlee.
I love you sow much Dad.
you hav love me yoor...."

She trails off at the end of her note, but I imagine she was going to write "you have loved me your whole life" because this is something she says frequently to Paul and me. I think these notes are so dear, so sweet, that I couldn't help but share one of them on social media. Of course my sweetheart of a sister Amy just had to comment: "I take it spelling isn't her strongest subject?" For Pete's sake, she just turned SIX!

I found another note this morning outside next to the water table where she had been playing with Daniel. I believe she took a break from playing with him to scribble down the following message (my translation of certain words is in parenthesis):

"God made you. God made me. God made evreeetheen (everything).
God made chrees (trees). God made wrms (worms).
God made evreetheen (everything).
Jesus I trust in you.
I love the nachr (nature).
I love God. 
I love you."

In addition to her constant journaling, Emma loves to sketch quick little drawings and give them as "presents" for her friends and family. Of course, not everyone is completely appreciative of her art. This afternoon, Emma scribbled off a quick sketch and handed it to Matthew: "Look! I made this for you! It's a picture of me and you!"

Instead of a "thank you" or a "how nice", Matthew's reaction was one of indignation, "EMMA! Why did you draw me SO FAT???" 

Not sure if it was intentional or not, but the Matthew of her sketch does look a wee bit short and pudgy. 

These children of mine are growing up way too fast. The phrase "the days are long but the years are short" truly applies to my experience raising these crazy kids. 

Here's to a wonderful summer learning, laughing, and loving together!

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