Monday, August 31, 2009

We are in the last week before school starts and our summer has been full of adventures. Soon the girls will be in first and third grades, which at times seems unbelievable, and then at other times they seem to age right before my eyes. Take for instance, Isabelle, who Jamie affectionately calls "Little Gretchen" sometimes. He calls her that because if you didn't know she looks and often acts much like me (I know, lucky girl) :) But last weekend she surprised me by acting quite opposite of me and growing up in a 60 second galleon ride.

Last weekend we were down in Iowa for a "best of Iowa" weekend, with Iowa pork chops, Iowa sweet corn, The Iowa State Fair, the Des Moines Farmers Market and Adventureland (good times, good times). Adventureland is a small amusement park I grew up going to in the summer. Now Isabelle's typical m.o. with rides is cautious. Tori hits all the big thrills and Ponsi normally stays with me and Macie on the more tame attractions. So we entered the park and after hitting the token train and carousel rides we headed for the main portion of the park. The first ride you come upon is The Galleon. I hate The Galleon. It is one of those pirate ships that swings back and forth going higher and higher each time--your stomach butterflies and the worst part for me is as you go up you look down at the ride motor that would grind you into pieces should that lame little lap bar unexpectedly release (it could happen). Well, Isabelle took off following Tori and her cousins Mack and Gage toward the Galleon. I elected to stay with Macie and just watch. ;) An acquaintance from high school was standing watching her kids on the Galleon, too, so we started chatting. I told her I couldn't believe Isabelle was going to ride it, how she must not have seen it before she decided to go, and that she usually is a big chicken like me. As the words are coming out of my mouth, I turn and look at Isabelle and there she is huge smile (minus one front tooth) and arms raised high- not one ounce of fear on her face. Where in the world this sudden bravery came is a surprise to me. But she continued to hit every thrill ride the park had to offer, even riding in the front row of the roller coasters. I rode with her once on the Tornado. My hands were double clenched around the lame lap bar and she was smiling, laughing and being thrown from one side to the other with each turn. Oh well.

So my "little Gretchen" grew past me that day and became "little Gretchen and then some" I guess. I imagine she will continue to do things I would never dream of and discover a life all her own. Watch out first grade--here she comes.


Tara said...


Full of JOY said...

I can just picture that smile! I'm so proud of her!!

Lisa said...

the hands up in the air with the missing front tooth got me, i have to admit. little catch in the throat, missing isabelle :)

Richardson Family said...

I get dizzy watching the gaellon.
Thanks for the update. We are missing all the Millers.

Life with Kaishon said...

This was such a great post Gretchen : ). I am glad you told even though you didn't have a picture for it : ). I am also glad you could go to Iowa for a weekend. I know you love it there so much!

Smiles with missing teeth are my MOST FAVORITE things. Sometimes, I see COMPLETE strangers and I want to ask if I can photograph their kid just because a tooth is missing. I do refrain myself, but the urge is great every.single.time : )

Do you go back the 8th like us?

Life with Kaishon said...

This morning when I was doing my post I was wishing I had pictures of your little girls. I just know I would love them : ) because I loved you so much! And the stories you tell about them are so charming!

LOVE the added pictures.
So, camo is big news at your house? Fabulous! Kaishon has this pair of camo pants that he LOVES and they are so short now. He still likes to wear them. He says they turn him into a fast runner? : ) Hmmmmmmmmm.

Just wanted you to know I was thinking of you and your sweet girls today.