Dear O, 9 years old

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Dear O, 9 years old 1

Dear O,

Sometimes I wonder what you will be doing in ten, fifteen, twenty years. Mostly because you are such a remarkable child.

Peculiar maybe too.

For example, you constructed a very impressive looking robot out of cardboard and tin foil. You've named him Anji and you have all sorts of grand plans for programming him.

You check out science books by the stack at the library and actually read them all. Same with magazine articles. When a recent edition of The Costco Connection arrived in our mailbox, you scooped it up and read the entire piece on Astronaut Scott Kelly.

Last I checked, you had 141% in Grammar & Composition. I'm not even sure how that grade is possible, but it made me smile because it is very fitting. We may need to create a budget just for notepads around here because you have one permanently adhered to your hand.

When we watch movies, you actually bring a notepad and pencil with you to take notes. And heaven help us when you return from Science Mondays - you have pages and pages of neatly scribbled notes. Also - diagrams! We mustn't forget the diagrams! Flip through your pages and you'll find sketches of atoms and molecules, planets, wildflowers, and rocks (categorized by type, of course).

Did I mention that you saw a picture of the Dumbbell Nebula (a planetary nebula in the constellation vulpecula) and recognized it from your own research? When we double-checked your observation with mouths wide open, you responded with a shrug, "It's my favorite constellation." I'm not sure how many 3rd graders have a favorite constellation, but you're just that kind of girl. You even created your own space-themed song for being age 8, "Passing over the sun and passing over a rock, soaring through the sky, never wanting to stop, Apollo 8, bum-bum-bum, Apollo 8. A-POLLO 8."

Over Christmas break, you copied down words from the dictionary. For fun.

Other strengths you have -

A. Public Speaking. Goodness, you can hold a crowd's attention. You speak with such rapt expression and dramatic intonations. When you dress up in purple like Rapunzel and stand on a chair to sing "I've got a dream," I watch you, mesmerized. You have a HUGE voice despite your miniature frame.

B. Art. You create sets of pieces in one category. For example, you recently created a fruit and vegetable series where you brought to life strawberries, bananas, and oranges. Each page had a different family group. You've done the same thing with princesses, careers, and the 4th of July.

C. Running. Speed and endurance - you've got both in the bag. Combined with genetics, I would say you're well on your way to a track scholarship (if you want one). This year, you're part of a Girls On The Run team and it suits you just fine.

Dear O, 9 years old 2

Other things you like to do - read, collect and paint rocks, hike, and play make-believe with Audrey. You are very enthusiastic when we pull out a microscope or watch documentaries.

At night, you slip under your covers without complaint. I'm not sure if you've read about the merits of a good night's sleep or it just comes naturally, but that's a habit to keep for a lifetime.

For your birthday meal, you requested Carrot Soup (really - carrot soup). A non-exciting, but super healthful meal that we devised out of pure necessity last year after returning from a road trip and having almost no groceries in the house. Somehow it stuck as one of your most favorite meals so we're running with it.

You also love fruit of all kinds (apples, peaches, plums, apricots, and melons). You actually told me you were "fruitsick" recently when we ran out of fruit. "You know, kind of like being homesick."

Other food notes - you like vegetables (especially cucumbers) and almost all fruit (but NOT - cooked tomatoes). You don't even like sauce on your pizza. You generally turn up your noise at processed foods and even many desserts, though you do so with the utmost of decorum. As one of our neighbors put it, "you'll never meet a kid with better manners." Strangely, though, you are a fan of In-N-Out.

When you grow up, you want to be a scientist, astronaut, writer, and mom. Possibly an inventor, horse trainer, or detective. You also want to build a time machine.

For your birthday, I should have bought you a lifetime supply of tape, tin foil, notepads, pencils, and science books. When asked, you said your preference for birthday gifts would be "a rocket and a horse." Also: "I like shirts that have Saturn and other planets on them."

Exodus 19:5 (KJV) says, "Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people."

Do listen to God's voice. He loves you and adores you. Also, know that that you are our peculiar treasure too. What would our lives be without you? We love you. To the moon and back (and so much more than that).

©2020 Stephanie Sheaffer - All Rights Reserved
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