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Chet, Phoebe, and the Hula Hoop

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

On a pellucid afternoon in June, Phoebe came out of the garage bearing a purple hula hoop that dates to when she was young enough to like everything to be pink or purple. All she had to do was hold it up and let the beads inside it rattle to get Chet Baker's immediate and full attention.

Ruh ruh ruh ruh. Give it to me. 

Chet Baker, you're going to have to jump for it.

Not a problem. I am feeling springy on this cool evening.

I got it! I got it! oinka oinka oinka oinka

It is hard to carry in front of me. I will flip it over and run inside the hoop.

Oops. That is like having someone chasing me. And I am afraid it will go up under my tail, and there is nothing I hate more than having something ride up under my tail!

I will run humpty-backed to prevent that. Why is everyone laughing so much?

One of the ways to get something from someone is to give a mighty twist with your super-strong neck and wrench it out of her hands. 

You can bend a whole hula hoop doing that. But you will eventually get it. 

It was one of those evenings, the perfect conjunction of beauty, light and fun. Ahhh.

You may have noticed in viewing these photos that somewhere in the last five years our little girl has turned into something approximating a supermodel. Looks are good to have, they're fine and all that but we have confidence that she's going to have a product well above and beyond simple beauty. There's a fire inside her and it's not just in her hair. She's set to break out of the pack, and we can't wait to see what she'll do with her one wild and precious life.

This would sound like nauseating parental braggadocio but tomorrow is her SIXTEENTH BIRTHDAY and I think it's probably OK to tell the world how wonderful Phoebe Linnea really is.

She knows much, much more about nature than any would suspect. She tries to hide it because she doesn't want to be the Ornithological Factotum of her high school, but it's too late. If anyone has a bird question they come to Phoebe.

If Phoebe tells me she sees a new bird in the yard, I drop everything, because it will be something really special. It started when she was about five and she told me she'd found a new butterfly. It was a Silvery Checkerspot, and she could tell it was different from the nearly identical Pearl Crescents that were everywhere.

She notices.

My little plan, it is working. Now, if we can just get baseball out of the forefront of her mind, we can continue the Science Chimp training. This may or may not be doable. Baseball is pretty much where she is at. And wherever you're at, there you are. And whoops! you're taking the whole family along.

Liam and Phoebe celebrate the Pirates' sweep of the series against the Kansas City Royals with a whiskbroom and the Jolly Roger. She wanted to take a full-sized broom but Daddy nixed that--too dangerous in the packed stands at PNC Park. She loves her brother and he loves her. And there is almost nothing that gives a mother more joy than seeing a sibling bond that strong and enduring. He knows how to make her laugh, that's for sure. And she includes him in everything she does without being asked. Just because she likes his company. 

Happy birthday, Beautiful!! and thank you for being a child of light.

All photos in this post taken with my new Canon  7D and its 70-300mm L series telephoto lens. Which I love so much, and which I got from Midwest Photo Exchange, a family-owned Real Photography Store. Call Sonnie at 
866-940-3686. He'll set you up.


Happy Birthday Phoebe!! You're a great role model for my little bird. You sure do shine brightly!

Ooh! You live near ish pgh? (sorry - new reader, here courtesy of murr brewster, still working my way through the back catalog of delight that is this blog). I am from pgh originally, and will be there at a game on 8/7. go, bucs!

There is something about this age of girls that is heartbreakingly beautiful. I doubt she realizes her effect. Happy birthday, Phoebe, and best wishes for the coming years!

Well, that apple didn't fall far from the tree! :-)

Have a wonderful birthday week, Phoebe!
Kathy in Delray Beach

Posted by Anonymous July 10, 2012 at 8:04 AM

Happy birthday, Phoebe!

Posted by Anonymous July 10, 2012 at 8:13 AM

Your daughter is indeed, very beautiful! The first picture of Chet reminds me of my "Boston bunny"... Just love it! So funny how often they look like funny little rabbits.

Posted by Elizabeth July 10, 2012 at 8:21 AM

It's been a delight watching her grow up through the photos here on the blog. Happy 16th birthday to the very beautiful Phoebe!

"oinka"? That made me laugh. Happy Birthday Phoebe!

I was thinking "Holy Cow, she's growing up and doing so beautifully" before you ever mentioned it.
As the Dad of two lovely girls, I can only say ... "NONE OF THE BOYS ARE GOOD ENOUGH FOR HER!"
Have fun filtering them for the next 5 years or so.
heehee ... been there done that.

Happy birthday to lovely Phoebe whom I had the pleasure to meet once.

Felicidades Phoebe! Happy birthday from Corozal, Puerto Rico!

Posted by Anonymous July 10, 2012 at 10:18 AM

Happy Birthday, Phoebe! And give Chet a big kiss for me. Bugs says "Woof!"

Happy Birthday, Phoebe. My birthday wish for you is that you will always "know-tice" nature! There's lots else to do, too, but if you notice the natural world every single day in every place you find yourself, you will be enriched forever! But you already know that, don't you? ;)

Smart, beautiful daughter; wonderful son; super-fantastic family dog -- that's some kind of top-notch parenting trifecta you've got there, folks.

Happy Birthday, Phoebe! How quickly time passes, and what a treasure this blog will be for generations of your family to come!

From a complete and total stranger (and secret admirer of your entire family!): I wish a very happy birthday. And please know there is absolutely nothing wrong with baseball or being a science chimp. Really. The rest of the world will catch up with you eventually. (Or not... but then... that's ok!)

Happy birthday to a beautiful young woman AND congratulations to parents who have helped her along the way.

Have a great day, Phoebe! I will be baking birthday cake tomorrow as well, our Rachel shares your day with you, she will be 20. Milestones for you both. Hurray!

Happy Birthday Phoebe! Wow 16! No rushing towards the future, enjoy every single moment.

On a side note, I can't stop looking at Chet's expression in the oinka oinka photo. OMG!

Happy Birthday and hugs from us!
Bill and Shel

@JZ: Did she ever look anything but graceful?

To repeat what Elise said: From a complete and total stranger (and secret admirer of your entire family)": I wish you a very sweet 16 birthday, Phoebe! Your Mom wrote such wonderful things about you. If only all parents loved their children as much as yours do, the world would be a better place. And your Mom will have to keep her blog readers posted on where you go with your wild and precious life. And it is so cool to read that you and your little brother like/love hanging out together. Just fabulous.

Phoebe is very special, indeed.

I can't believe it has taken Chet's age in years to discover hula hoop fun. Bella, the hula hoop queen, is impressed.

Happy Birthday, Pheobe, What a terrific young lady you are! Follow your Mom's blog every day and admire your family so much! Marion from Maine

Posted by Anonymous July 11, 2012 at 7:08 AM

Happy Birthday, Phoebe from Tennessee. I, too keep in touch through your mom's blog and feel as if I know you and your wonderful family. May you go far and never forget the wonderful raisin' you have had. XX

Posted by Anonymous July 11, 2012 at 12:39 PM

so much doggone joy here!...
Happy B-day to Phoebe & Happy Hooping to Chet.

Julie, you just made my day! What enchanting photos, what beautiful words. A lucky dog, a lucky mom, and lucky kids!

Julie, you just made my day! What enchanting photos, what beautiful words. A lucky dog, a lucky mom, and lucky kids!

Happy dog, happy kids, happy mom, happy life! Thanks, Julie, for bringing so much joy to your readers!

Mother's a beautiful thing!

Posted by Anonymous July 12, 2012 at 1:20 PM

Happy birthday young lady.
Rondeau Ric and Anne

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