Friday, June 25, 2010


Summer started here in Kozlowski Land at the end of the first week in June. It started pretty slow due to weather challenges in our first full week, but then the second week of summer flew by.

Daniel got to attend a VBS at a church where 3 years and up were welcomed (sadly, most churches only do VBS for those who have graduated Kindergarten and up) and security is tight. He had so much fun, especially since most of his friends were also at this VBS. Sierra has lost interest in VBS. She took the opportunity to sleep in during this week of craziness.

We got a new dog in the midst of the VBS craziness. He is thought to be a full bred wooly siberian husky. He is about 1 year old and as beautiful as they come. He is awesome!! We have really enjoyed him, though our cats really hate him....REALLY hate. They have not been willing to give the poor dog a chance, but he will wear them down. Stella isn't too fond of him either. We love him, though, and look forward to many years with him.

Our wonderful friends from Africa have returned home again for summer. Sierra is excited and is trying to squeeze a years worth of fun with her bff into a few weeks.

I have not done much writing. We are either on the go or I am resting. I must make time to write!!!

Sadly, Matt's work load has been heavy, so he has not been able to enjoy our summer fun. He is often working 10+ hours a day, not getting home until Daniel's bedtime. Just when we think he is done, a new project springs up and he is at it again. The bonus to this is that, since Hewitt got sued by an employee due to overtime pay, now Matt gets time and a half for those hours he works over 40!! This helps with those very expensive summer electric bills.

Other than that, we have spent a lot of time at the library. Sierra has been taking acting classes free at the library every Wednesday (with her bff). I got her a dvd about learning french and is loving it (it is directed for kids). Daniel, who has a vast interest in numbers and music, finally became interested in reading. I have been working with him daily. I made a powerpoint show to work with his phonics and he has read me 2 simple readers. He still tries to look at the picture to figure out the words, but is learning to use the sounds. He is doing well!! All is good here...the days are speeding by. It is hard to believe that we are nearing the end of June.

Here's what we have to look forward to:

On July 4th, Sierra and I are going to the downtown Houston theater to see the Broadway musical Wicked. She has bought herself a pretty dress as have I and we plan to have dinner out in downtown Houston.

On July 13th, Sierra will have surgery to have her tonsils and adenoids removed. We are pretty excited about it as she has chronic throat pain, had strep twice in a matter of weeks and the ENT thinks it will help to stave off sinus infections. She also snores and the doctor thinks that this surgery will offer her a better nights sleep (she is often tired a lot during the day).

In August, Sierra goes away to camp...she wishes it were sooner, but I think they do it so late so the kids will have a good foundation set for when they start back at school.

In between it all, we go to our local waterpark a couple times a week and the pool in our subdivision a couple times a week. Daniel is learning to swim now and that is exciting.

Daniel is just going with the flow.......and will start KINDERGARTEN in August!! WOW!!

So, there you have it....our lives in a nutshell!!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

A year of change

Sierra will be finishing up her 5th grade year at Cox Intermediate School tomorrow, June 3rd. She turned 11 this past Saturday.

This past year has been a year of INCREDIBLE growth in my daughter's life. She started the school year full of hope and excitement. It was a new experience going up from Elementary into Intermediate School. In this new format, she would have a home base class and would switch between Social Studies, Science, Reading, and Math. Half of the year, she was in Choir and the other she was in Art. This was an everyday class for her unlike Elementary where it was part of specials. She was also, daily, in PE.

She has had the best teachers she has ever had and she adores them all. Her teachers love her so much that a month ago or so I went to have lunch with Sierra at school. Her science teacher approached me and said she was planning to call me. She and the other teachers were concerned about Sierra. She said she wasn't behaving badly...she just wasn't smiling like she usually did...was not as bubbly as she usually was. I talked with Sierra and discovered she was stressed about the TAKS test. I got to email with her teachers to help Sierra. It means a lot to me to have these teachers investing in her life. Sierra felt terrible that she had worried her teachers.

She had a lot of hope of developing new friendships and she did. She got a lot of new friends, some were good and others were not so good. She displayed good discernment in those cases where the friends were not too good. She earned a cell phone after making so many great grades. She also was in student council and served in the environmental committee.

She also became aware of herself. She began to care about how she looked each day. No more complaining about brushing her teeth twice a day, she wants white teeth. She also began to take an interest in styling her hair. We go as mom and daughter to a salon to get our hair cut at the same time. She got a cute style and began to make sure her hair was styled each day. She also started wanting to experiment with make-up which I allowed under my supervision. She has been learning what looks best on her, which is just the SLIGHTEST hint of make-up.

She has also gained an interest in the latest fashions. She raises her own money to buy clothes that she likes and she looks great in them. My self-proclaimed tomboy has been morphing back into a girl. At the end of this year, she has even discovered she loves skirts and dresses. Her big complaint is most dresses and skirts sold in stores for her size are cutesy....and she hates cutesy. She has recently purchased for herself a cute denim skirt, an adorable grey skirt and yesterday she bought herself a dress. Funny thing about the dress is it is made for teenagers and she has to MAJORLY alter it, but it seems the only way to get clothes she likes.

As she has been growing over these past few years, she has been maturing a lot. She has only been grounded a few times. She loves to hang out with her family and while she tries to spread her wings a bit, she still likes to tuck herself in the warmth of her families wings. She spends more time reading both magazines and books. She is in the middle of reading 3 different book series. she could very well bankrupt us with her book habit (she is not as bad as Sarah, Stacie...but it might be beneficial to get a Kindle....). It is so great when you hear your daughter talk about how much she loves to read and how it is better than tv or movies. I am a bookworm myself.

She recently went through her room and got rid of most of her stuffed animals to Daniel's great delight. When she went to his room with her arms full of webkinz and many other stuffed animals, Daniel could hardly believe his luck. She has also taken down the posters of puppies and kities she has had for so long and her desire is to decorate her room with posters of the Eiffel Tower and Big Ben and other such art.

She wants to be a teenager so bad. It is sad, but it is hard to keep one young who looks so forward to being older. And while she likes to dream about being a teenager, she is still an 11-year-old.

Other changes this year has been boys. She has had several boys interested in having her for a girlfriend. One boy asked her out and she said no. The next day, that same boy came to school in a suit and asked her again. Wow!! Casanova. She did get a boyfriend towards the end of the school year. The romance lasted a couple months and consisted of texting, some phone calls, sitting together at lunch and playing at recess together....all of which she did with him before the romance and after the romance. She was devestated when they broke up, but only because she didn't want the friendship to end. After a couple hours of agony, they both agreed to stay friends and they have.

All in all, Sierra has had a lot of growth. I like that she has an interest in looking good. We go out on dates a lot together. For her birthday, she got a mall gift card and while Matt and Daniel played at the mall, Sierra and shopped. She hugged me several times saying we were the best mom/daughter team in the world. She tells me all the time that she loves her life.

She is still very close to her brother. She is not as likely to get down on the floor and play with him, but she still loves on him. Daniel has become friends with most of the kids on our street and will spend hours outside playing with them. If one of them says anything mean to him, Sierra is outside in seconds setting them straight. You absolutely do NOT mess with her brother.

She is an incredible daughter. I am very lucky to have her in my life. It is neat to see her maturity. It is neat to see her grow (she is almost as tall as me). It is neat to hang out with her. She is just such a neat girl!!