Jaunary Girls Club

After Dustin and I were married, our next door neighbor was a hairdresser. She was/is a really talented hairdresser. We had so much fun every single day. We talked Dustin into getting his eyebrows waxed. Anytime she had extra hair color, she'd call me over and we'd put a few foils in my hair. If she had a new product, she'd try it out on me. We had relay races in trash cans. I don't think I ever laughed as hard as when Katie was my neighbor.

When I was pregnant with Ellie, I decided I was sick of my long hair and I wanted a bob. Katie started cutting and she cut it short. Really short. I think we both started freaking out and she sort of finished as best she could without losing too much length anywhere else. I went home and cried. I called my best friend, Sam, who lived upstairs and wailed, "I look like a BOY!" Sam ran to the store to buy me hair magazines and cute clips (which was probably a HUGE sacrifice since we were all on student budgets at the time). It was then that I learned the important lesson: DO NOT MAKE DRASTIC CHANGES WHEN YOU ARE PREGNANT.

I have repeated this mantra to my sister many times. She did not listen. While she was back home in Virginia she went to see our family hairdresser, Sherri. Sherri is a part of the family. She is from Thailand and has cut my family's hair for almost 15 years. She makes us sticky rice and mangoes. She knows all of our kids However, Sherri does what Sherri wants. She's responsible for this haircut, after all:
In case you don't know the story, read here.

Anyway, all of this is a long introduction to say that Sherri cut my sweet pregnant sister's hair into a very short bob that she hates, so she refused to have any pictures taken of herself while she was here. And while I think it's a slight overreaction to not have ANY pictures of yourself at Christmas, I understand being a hormonal pregnant woman and you don't mess with them. EVER. And so there are no January Girl Club pictures. But the fact remains: The January Girl Club was together for Christmas.

PS When Sam saw my bad bob, she marched me back over to Katie's and announced, "She hates her hair." Katie had been crying because she knew I hated it and she was so upset. The only choice was to cut it even shorter, but she did a really cute haircut that I loved. Best neighbor ever.

You may be wondering what the January Girls Club is. It is a made up super secretive club that only girls born in January can belong to (ie Kathleen, Sadie and Olivia). They have badges and secret handshakes and eat lots of candy on shiny new table cloths. I know this because Sadie is a HORRIBLE secret keeper. Never tell her anything you do not want repeated. I'm sure I could know more of their secret rules if I cared to understand the insanity of the club. Actually, I'm pretty sure they have one rule: Anything you make up is just what we needed.
This is just one example of how fun my sister is. Even when she's sick as a dog and pregnant-ly tired she is fun and my children follow her around like little puppy dogs. I am so grateful to have her!! She had ONE goal while she was here: teach my children to ride a bike. It appears my children have inherited my fear of moving vehicles. One accident and we are DONE. In first grade Ellie broke her arm riding her brand-spanking-new-from-Christmas-bike (ironically, my SISTER was the one with her at the time) and that was the last time she ever got on that bike. So maybe it was my sister's guilty conscience that prompted this goal. Nate has been DYING to take the training wheels off of his bike but the weather was always too hot and I was too lazy and Dustin was so busy and we had scooters and and and.
So Friday morning, my sister said, "Today, I am teaching these kids to ride their bikes." I'll save you the long story, but wait, the story is really short. Dustin took Nate out there, he got on his bike and started riding. Literally that exact instant. I think he may have fallen once, but right from the get go he could get himself started, stop and turn. Whatever. All of that anxiety. I think it took Dustin longer to fill up the tires.
I ran next to Nate while he biked all over the neighborhood and then over to show his friend Brady. Then my evil eyes turned to Ellie. I was going to make her learn too. Her bike was in terrible shape since 1) It hadn't been ridden in 3 years and 2) it's the size a 7 year old needs. I thought she could just try on Nate's bike (which was also 3 years old, so already a size too small for him). She couldn't even pedal because her knees hit the handle bar, so we borrowed a neighbors bike while Dustin went to work on her. Needless to say, she got up and pedaled and she was done. Apparently learning to ride a bike is like potty training. You just let them wait until they're old enough and they do it themselves.
Unfortunately in moments of past insanity I promised them brand new bikes when they learned to ride without training wheels. They both looked and me and begged to go shopping right away. Two days before Christmas. Uh, no.


Kathleen said...

I wish I could have some of the glory for the two wheeler situation, but I literally did nothing minus pressure Dustin to fix the bikes. I do remember your rainbow brite hair. This is yet another example of me needing to learn from your mistakes.

Favorite part missing: no one makes fun of my brother, let's take it over to ________'s house and rub it in his face.

Danika said...

I'm glad to hear Brandon isn't the only 4th grader who didn't know how to ride a bike....
We are struggling over here with both of our boys. They have interest! Any tips?!?

Maddy said...

Seriously -- they can probably already do it. I was amazed that we didn't have to do anything to help them figure it out.

I do think using bikes that are one size too small helped. It's a lot less intimidating if you can reach the ground with your feet!!

Anonymous said...

I love the BIKE post.
Riding bikes with both you and Kathleen was always one of my favorite activities.
I love you.
Aunt Beaney

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