Last year when G turned 14, I spent some time pouring my heart into a blog post for her. I didn't think I had it in me to write a new one this year. My depth of feeling for her hasn't changed...so it just felt like it would be a repetition of all the stuff I already said.
Then my good friend Jenn* posted this about her own 15 year old, Spencer. And I had my inspiration. So, here are 15 things you should know about Genevieve.
1. She is thoughtful. Genevieve is always quick to jump in and help. When she hears me in the kitchen making dinner or cleaning up, she is right there to help. When I go to work and she is home with a snow day, she does little things to help out around the house...cleaning the bathroom, doing some laundry.
2. She is caring and generous. When one of her best friends was in a car accident, she wanted to be at the hospital all the time. She took magazines for her friend to read, new headbands to keep her feeling fresh, and her favorite photo album of all their friends on their East Coast trip.
3. She has a fabulous way with words. Whether in writing or speaking, G's intelligence shines through. She loves to write: stories, songs. She began her writing career when she was just little, creating menus and 'taking orders' from her dad and me.
4. She is sarcastic and punny. Genevieve says something that makes me laugh every day. Her sense of humor is dry, witty, and sharp. She has always been able to keep up with Jeff's and my "playful banter" and it didn't take long for her to join right in. She can find pretty funny stuff on the internet too....Jenna Marbles...
5. She is passionate. When G finds something interesting, she grabs on and doesn't let go...sometimes to the point of almost obsession: Law and Order SVU, Lady Gaga, writing music, reading realistic fiction, playing volleyball. She gives 100% to the things she loves.
6. She is comically uncoordinated. Although she is a pretty good volleyball player, she cannot cut paper. She cannot walk in high heels. She looks hilarious trying to dance. And she knows it and can laugh at herself.
7. She has a natural confidence. Genevieve knows who she is and doesn't waste time trying to fit in or to be something she is not. And she has little patience for others who are fake or intolerant.
8. She is logical and level-headed. I love that Genevieve can see the stupidity in a lot of things. She will refuse to do things just because society (or school) says she should. She wants a good reason and she'll be civilly disobedient if not given that reason. She doesn't get involved in the regular teen girl drama either.
9. She has a way with little kids. Even though she's lately taken to saying that she isn't having kids, she is so fun to watch around them. She's patient and calm and kind. And she loves them, so it is joyful just to watch her be with them.
10. She has an awesome sense of style. Though I miss her insistence on wearing dresses every day like she did when she was little, she does know how to put together an outfit.
11. She sings REALLY loudly in the shower. Like so loudly that we can hear her clearly across the house.
12. She has a strong sense of family. The pictures all over her bookshelves in her room show it. She was lucky to know her great grandparents and she knows how lucky she was.
13. She is responsible. I could let her go out and play by herself when she was little. She was like a little mother to Lili when Lili was a baby. And I've never been worried to leave her in charge at home when Jeff and I go out...even for a weekend last summer.
14. She is introverted. This is a change from when she was younger. She used to want to be the center of attention. She wanted to be at a different friend's house every weekend. Now she seems content to be at home. Sometimes I worry she's losing the fearlessness that used to mark her personality. I hope it is a natural part of making her way through her teen years and that she regains some of that courage when she emerges into adulthood.
15. She is intelligent. Genevieve cares about and knows what is happening in the world. She can hold intelligent conversations with adults. She is going to be a successful woman and I am thoroughly enjoying watching her transformation.
*I met Jenn and 13 other moms online in an AOL forum when G was a couple months old. We all had babies born in February of 1997. So not only is G 15, but so is my friendship with these other fantastic moms. :)