So, instead of catching up on everything that's happened in the past FOUR YEARS (I really can't believe it's been that long. Truly, I was thinking two at the most.), I'm just going to start rambling and hope most of it makes sense to you.
Jensen just passed third grade, and is a budding genius. Actually, she's passed the budding stage and in full-bloom. She's already reading at a sixth grade level, which is of no surprise to any of us. She reads like I used to, though: she loves it when she does it, and will pick up one book and read it voraciously until she's through, then not read anything again for a while. I wish we could get her to read more often. She also writes. She writes songs, stories, even books, which she illustrates herself. She's so clever in the way she illustrates, too, because her script will tell only part of the story. The pictures will give you the details--often hilarious ones.
And let's just talk about the drawings. Where she gets it we're not quite sure, because neither Tom nor I are skilled in that way. But she very much is. Her attention to detail is remarkable, and it's all in her mind and memory. She doesn't trace or copy--she just remembers and translates. I'll post some things soon, I promise. (Just so you know, I don't keep my promises.)
Her passions now include music and singing, at which she excels; Hannah Montana, of whom she believes herself to be the number one fan; fashion (her sketches are truly impressive); and, as always, animals. She's been a vegetarian since she was six, which we thought would pass but clearly won't anytime soon. Let me explain: her commitment began when we told her one day we were having chicken for dinner.
"Like, chicken chicken?"
"Like, this used to be a live chicken?"
"Yes, dear, chicken."
"I don't want that."
So she didn't eat chicken. Soon after, she found out that hamburger was actually cow, bacon actually pig, etc. I still maintain that if chicken were called something other than chicken, she might still be eating animal meat without realizing it. For some reason, though, she would allow herself to eat fish, I think because she went fishing once and didn't want to rationalize. Anyway, this was a relief to us, because it was an easy source of protein for Dad, our family cook, who is unaccustomed to vegetarian cuisine. It was only a little more than a week ago, after her goldfish died, that she no longer wanted to eat fish. She insists the two incidents aren't related, but I'm suspicious. We told her that if she is going to give up fish, she's going to have to learn to like cheese and nuts, which she doesn't. She agreed, bless her heart. So she's added string cheese and honey-roasted peanuts to her repertoire, which she promises to increase. She drinks milk and will eat yogurt from time to time, and she still eats eggs. We'll see how long that lasts.
At any rate, as frustrating as it is for Tom in the kitchen, we are quite proud of her for her commitment, which is based on nothing but a love for animals. She recently heard about something called a vegan. Forgive me--I told her I didn't know what that was.
In short, the girl is filled with passion. Passion for anything. If she's watching a movie about a figure skater, she'll ask if she can take figure skating lessons. If she reads a boook about cooking, she wants learn how to be a chef...starting with today's dinner. She just has all of this passion and feeling inside, and it comes out of her like roots from a tree. In fact, she's reminding me of myself when I was her age.
For now she's enjoying the summer, and is, along with the rest of us, looking forward to our next trip to Niagara Falls, which is sort of up in the air at the moment, but will definitely happen.
OK; so I'm going to stop there for now. I'll continue with Cooper tomorrow, and see where this goes from there. Don't hate me if this turns out to be a passing whim. I'm unapologetic lately in an effort to get off my own back. But I'll do my best, I promise. (See earlier note on this subject.)
For tonight--*crud, it's morning*--I'll post a fairly recent picture of Jensen to bring your visual images up to date. She's a gem, isn't she?
Yeah, I know....
Thanks for reading, and post your comments!