S: 2011: The year I turned 9
BC: The end
FC: 2011: The year I turned 9
1: This year was one of independence and self-reliance. Sasha decided on her own that she wanted to attend summer camp. She got on the bus knowing no one, spent three full weeks away from home, and returned with new friends and wonderful memories. She asked to play soccer, and overcame her trepidations on the field to become a valuable member of the team. She learned to braid her own hair, developed an interest in community service, and helped take care of the littlest friends in our group. Her hair grew long, and she dyed it blue. Her teeth fell out, and she embarked on her adventures in orthodontia. She said goodbye to a dear friend who moved away, and made a place in her heart for a new one who'd moved back to Houston. I get complimented regularly on how mature and insightful she is. She's growing up, but when I look at her, I still see my sweet little baby girl.
2: Another year, another room makeover. I didn't like the bunkbeds after all, so Mom got me a full-sized bed and a duvet that should last me through middle school. (She hopes.)
3: The many faces of me
7: Gorgeous eyes, even when googly
15: I started orthodontia with Dr. Wadler at Bellaire Orthodontics: retainer, head gear and later, braces.
17: Illustration by Katherine Tramonte
18: In June, Mom let Josh and me dye our hair blue. We loved it. (Mom might have loved it even more.)
19: Mom loves my mermaid hair
25: “There is a garden in every childhood, an enchanted place where colors are brighter, the air softer, and the morning more fragrant than ever again.” ~Elizabeth Lawrence
34: I love my family
36: We have such fun together
39: Mom and Dad celebrated their thirteenth wedding anniversary
40: Do not walk behind me, For I cannot lead. Do not walk ahead of me, For I shall not follow. Just walk by my side, And be my friend. ~Albert Camus | Josh and me
46: "A sister is a little bit of childhood that can never be lost." ~Marion C. Garretty
47: Quien es mas macho?
59: "A brother shares childhood memories and grown-up dreams."
60: Mommy and me
64: Daddy and me
67: June 2002 June 2011 The more things change, the more they stay the same. ~Alphonse Karr
68: Mimi and Da-dad and me
72: Grammy and Poppy and me
74: MY COUSINS!
79: My cousins: Michaela (8), Catherine Mei (8), Quinn (4), and Charlotte (4)
80: Third grade classmates | Isa Tramonte | Isa | Adrienne Grimes | Clara Hopkins and Matthew Wimberley | Our Gang
81: Morgan Miller | Jessica Wang and Natalie Casper | Julia Love | Kate Wimberley | Isa | Maya Basra
85: In July, I participated in the “Walk With Pride” Shoe Program sponsored by Mimi and Da-dad's Exchange Club, which provides new shoes to underprivileged children. Then in November, I helped with the Shoes That Fit service project through WUES. I was interviewed by KHOU news anchor Sherry Williams about the experience.
86: In March, we spent spring break in San Antonio with the Forneys and Magnuses
87: We saw the Alamo, toured the River Walk, and went back to Sea World.
89: We celebrated Easter at home. It was so much fun blowing out and dyeing the eggs. Mom made peep nests and a bunny cake. Grammy, Poppy, and the Huffmans joined us for lunch.
90: One great thing about living on the Gulf Coast? It's almost ALWAYS beach weather!
91: Because I love animals so much, I'll never outgrow visits to the zoo.
92: On April 15, Mom and I went on a date to see a performance of the Broadway classic "Cats."
93: Practice with Mrs. Elafros | Performing at the book fair | "Go Tell Aunt Rhody" | At WUES, practicing | Demonstrating my violin skills at home | Piano lessons with Maria
95: Due to HISD budget issues, the music program at WUES was cut. I loved playing violin, and loved Mrs. Elafros. I'll miss her very much... | ...but will never forget her influence. My love of music continues, and I will find new ways in which to explore it.
97: In June, I graduated from Ms. Stone's third grade class. I truly loved being her student.
98: I turned nine!
99: I had a kickball party after school on the last day of the school year. Mr. Anderson was our coach.
102: We had a spontaneous water fight at the end of the party, and later, at the Hopkins's going-away party, Clara sang me "Happy Birthday" and we danced the night away.
103: We had to say goodbye to our dear friends Clara, Keller and Tripp Hopkins, who moved first to Connecticut and then Utah as soon as school was out. We miss them very much.
104: In June, I went to Camp Champions for the first time. I made a friend on the bus, Olivia Meyers, who happened to also be in Cabin 11 with me. I can't wait to go back next summer!
106: I got to experience so many new things, and discovered an independence I didn't know I had.
110: I had an amazing three weeks, but was also so happy to see Mom, Dad and Josh when they came to pick me up at the closing ceremony.
112: It was a record-setting summer with a siege of 100-degree-plus days, an extreme drought, and forest fires that ravaged much of the state. But in spite of it all, we still enjoyed our regular trips to Austin and the Hill Country.
113: We spent a July day in Spicewood, Texas at the beautiful Krause Springs, a gorgeous property that sits on a bluff overlooking Cypress Creek.
115: In July we spent some fun time at the Wimberley's ranch.
116: In July, we met the heat in New Braunfels, where we spent a fun few days with Mimi and Da-dad at the T Bar M Ranch.
117: Then we met the gang for a mini Camp Wimberley at Aunt Lee's "land." We went to Schlitterbahn, too, but Mom didn't take her camera.
118: First day of fourth grade and the first year I carried a binder and switched classes and teachers for different subjects
120: Uncle Mark bought a house in Pirate's Beach. I had fun learning how to boogie board this fall.
121: We spent a rainy September day paddle-boating on McGovern Lake at Hermann Park, then checking out the new Africa exhibit at the zoo.
122: In the fall, I became a Laser-Shooting Unicorn.
124: Coaches Tim Evered and Filo Castore led us through an undefeated season to the playoffs. We didn't win but we were winners!
125: In October, we had our annual school carnival. What could be more fun than friends, sno-cones, confetti egg wars and green hairspray?
127: In October, we went to Dewberry Farms. We panned for semi-precious stones, jumped on the inflatables, ziplined and had duck races.
128: Happy Halloween!
129: We had Thanksgiving at home. Grand-Mimi was well enough to come for the day, Daddy made it home from Saudia Arabia in time for lunch, and we were all very thankful to be together.
130: In December, we made our annual trip to the Mayo Clinic. Daddy got a clean bill of health, and we got to see our wonderful friends, the Paters. And best of all, it SNOWED!
134: Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah
135: We enjoyed our annual Christmas Eve with the Wimberleys. We exchanged gifts and opened our matching PJs. This year, the Cadenas joined us, so there were three extra monkeys to join in the fun. | Flashback: 2006
137: We woke up to gifts from Santa and Mom and Dad, then went to Tia's to have Christmas lunch, and afterward, we went to Great-Aunt Gay's to see the rest of our family. It was a wonderful day filled with love (and presents!)
138: We celebrated New Year's Eve at the Forneys'
139: Cheers to a wonderful 2011 and an even better 2012!