Lucia, my baby, is 10 today. I can hardly believe it. We are definitely in a different stage of family life now, with three teenagers and two pre-teens and no children with single-digit ages.
Last night we went out for an anticipatory birthday dinner at Outback Steakhouse, and then looked at the bill and decided that we probably need to rethink our birthday dinner tradition. In the future instead taking the whole family out to a restaurant, maybe just the birthday girl or boy. This makes me sad because I love big dinners with the whole family, but restaurants are not getting any cheaper and our kids are no longer ordering off the kids’ menu.
Lucy had ribs and fries and even tried the famous Outback bread and liked it. Even though she’s outgrown her wheat allergy, she’s still somewhat skeptical of breads and often has to be coaxed to try them. But last night she actually got miffed at me for not offering her any bread– in my defense, I’m so used to her refusing I’ve stopped asking and also everyone else was just grabbing and I assumed if she’d wanted some she could speak up. But she sometimes has a hard time speaking up and I should also try to remember that.
We had birthday dinner a day early because the four older kids all have scouts tonight. Currently the boy’s troop and girl’s troop are meeting on the same night and the same location so they can combine forces for working on merit badges and because there’s a lot of leadership overlap between the two troops. The girls aren’t in love with having their meetings with the noisy boys, but for now it’s what’s working. They’re still planning outings and camping trips that don’t involve the boys, though, because it is important for them to have their own space. Lucy will move up from cubs to BSA scouts in 2024, right before Bella ages out of the troop. Meanwhile, she’s always a bit lonely on scout nights without all her older siblings. It’s hard being the youngest. I tend to indulge her and let her watch Star Wars Rebels or Clone Wars. Though some weeks we have been listening to a Great Courses lecture series on “The Barbarian Empires of the Steppe,” which is quite good.
I made the other kids do schoolwork because with our Texas vacation combined with Christmas vacation, we’d had almost a month off of school. But I let Lucy take the day off and build her new Lego set. But it was abbreviated school with no math because I had a birthday cake to make. Chocolate layer cake, per Lucy’s request.
I was going to make her Lucia buns for breakfast–since we were sadly delayed in Texas on her feast day, but yesterday was a bit too crazy. I have promised her them for either Saturday or Sunday; but I don’t think I have any saffron in the house.
For her presents Lucy got a Lego friends space shuttle set, a lilac colored long velvet dress, and a couple of over the shoulder bags, one big enough for a sketchbook, iPad, kindle, etc, and the other just big enough for a wallet and keys. It’s hard to have a birthday crammed in between Christmas and Epiphany. I try not to short her on presents, but the likelihood is that she would get more for her birthday if it was in the mid-summer.
Lucy is currently re-reading The Lord of the Rings. She loves playing outside with the neighborhood kids. She wants to learn how to sew.