This has been such an amazing year of changes for the Princess!
Princess, after much prayer, has made two friends that I believe will be friends forever. One we'll call Pony Girl, as they are obsessed with all things horse together, and the other is 16, which was her school desk number in 6th grade.
In January, she took Hunters's Ed with Pony Girl and Mr. Lamadingdong. Her daddy took her shooting quite a bit, and then her friend's dad took them hunting. She shot a rabbit (actually, quite a few little girls shot the poor rabbit, but they called it for the Princess.) As far as I know, it is still in the friend's home waiting to be made into a jackalope. It was just crawling with lice, and I think it's really noble of the friend's mommy to let it reside in the freezer.
Princess also won a prize at the Elementary School's Reflection contest with her artwork.
I was able to go to an overnight campout with Princess and her school class (the girls) at Clear Creek in cabins in the mountains. We did a fun ropes course, learned leadership skills, played games, ate cafeteria food, went stargazing, and had a great time. It was a fun, albeit cold field trip! Her cute friends were there. It was a little sad when all three girls decided to go to different schools for Jr. High. They've managed to continue to get together, still.
Princess' 6th grade teacher was a severe trial to her for more than half the school year. She was very strict, and by the book, which made Princess really crazy. The teacher was an exceptional teacher, but she was retiring, and maybe a little trunky. Princess spend hours and hours writing, and is very creative. Mrs. P would get exasperated at some of the creative licenses that Princess took with word usages and plotlines. It actually made me a little crazy, as I like that Princess doesn't color in the lines every time. The situation became a downward spiral, as Princess began to see EVERYTHING that Mrs. P did as vile and sinister.
Princess was struggling every day, and we talked a lot about learning to work with different personalities, and respecting teachers, and looking for the good in others, etc...Princess wanted to change teachers in the middle of the year. If the teacher had been a bad one, or damaging or dangerous in some way, I would have entertained the idea, but she wasn't. They just had conflicting personalities. Mrs. P was a good teacher, and did a lot to prepare Princess for Jr. High.
We prayed a lot about it, and I was inspired to ask her teacher to fast and pray for Princess. (Because of conversations I had with Mrs. P on the overnighter, I knew that she was LDS.) I then asked Princess to fast and pray for her teacher. Somehow, the combination of the two of them praying for each other made the rest of the year very pleasant for them both, and the conflicts were very much resolved. Hooray!
Before she decided to go to Maeser Prep, Princes took the Advanced Placement testing to see if she could qualify for the advanced classes in the school district. She did.
Spring of 2015, Pony Girl and her family were able to be sealed in the temple. Handsome Prince and I were able to see it, and Princess was able to wait for them in the foyer. This friend, who we'll call Pony Girl, has cystic fibrosis. 3 of the 4 girls in that family have it, and their 3rd one has been on hospice for the last 2+ years. It was so touching to see them all kneel around an alter of God, dressed in white, a forever family! A couple of their neighbors held the wheelchair of their 3rd daughter, while Grandma helped them to join hands. I hope I'll never forget how I felt that day. Sacred, beautiful day.
This Pony Girl, and the other bestie, 16, had a lot of fun together this year. They all went horseback riding and to lunch at Princess' 12 year-old surprise birthday party, and then watched her get her ears pierced. They went to the temple together to perform baptisms for the dead.
Then when Pony Girl had her Make a Wish picked up and sponsored by a corporate car dealership, Princess was able to be there for the surprise and the luau. They were both on the news that day.
This was a day for Princess to really rejoice for Pony Girl, and I was so pleased to see the way that she did so, without guile or jealousy. Pony Girl and her sweet family will get to go ride horses in Hawaii later this year. They invited Princess to ride horses in Park City with Pony Girl and to attend the luau in Salt Lake City, but when all was said and done, Princess didn't get to ride horses. She was a good sport, and is a good friend.
This was possibly the first time that Princess was aware of the fact that Cystic Fibrosis could take her friend's life. (Qualifying for Make a Wish happens for a reason.) Pretty sobering for a 12 year-old.
She was also able to attend her first YW girls' camp. It was also a faith-building time, and Pony Girl and 16 were there, too, with the Stake. That was fun for them.
Princess had some discouraging medical things this year--she is struggling with depression and anxiety, and started Zoloft and counselling. She had her tonsils removed in August, which was really not fun. She also had a few months of severe feminine pain where she got to experience a couple of ultra-sounds and a (thankfully very, very mild) visit to a gynecologist. Happily, things are a lot better now, but she missed a lot of school the first 3 months of Jr. High. Stupid hormones.
It's an understatement to state that the hormones made her unstable and a little difficult to live with. :)
Princess decided to go to Maeser Prep Academy with Mr. Lamadingdong this fall, and it's been such a good experience for her! She has always been one to thrive academically, but she is just soaring! She was selected to be a peer mentor for an autisic student, and she has proven herself once again a patient, kind, loyal friend. She's participated in some of the school extracurricular activities, winning 2nd place in a school-wide video game contest (even against the HS kids) and winning an art competition in two of the three categories with her sketches.
There's a boy at her school that was a fun new best friend at first, but has turned into an emotional pest. This has been a trial for her. She's a little discouraged, because a new friend that is a great friend at school is moving. I'm glad she has Pony Girl and 16.
She spends a lot of time drawing, and has an amazing talent! She is very creative and thoughtful, and is really blossoming into an extraordinary young woman.