My Daughter: in a Million Words or Less


Since when did parents get homework?? Girly Girl has had virtually no homework all week, but her aide has sent a note home every night with a list of five to seven tasks *I* need  to do. The hardest one was an essay: “In a million words or less, describe your child.”

Of course, you know me. I couldn’t just scratch a few sentences on the xeroxed form they sent home. I wrote an essay! When I was finished, it occurred to me that you might also find it interesting, so I’m posting it. Here, let me introduce you: my friends, this is my daughter, Girly Girl.

My daughter is a girly girl. In fact, that’s what I call her on my blog, Girly Girl. She likes pretty clothes, makeup, fingernail polish, and staying clean.

She loves to swing on the swingset. She’ll swing for hours, going as high as the set will allow. She also loves to sing karaoke. Last weekend, our family provided karaoke for a friend’s wedding, and she closed the set down with a crowd-pleasing rendition of Rachel Proctor’s “Me and Emily.”

She is, however, a little stubborn. Her father calls her the Immovable Object, so unless we’re willing to be an Irresistible Force, we choose our battles. Consequently, there will be days she wears clothing that may not fit anyone else’s idea of fashion, and she may carry her glasses rather than wear them.

She cares very much about what people think. When she’s done something wrong and she’s being punished, she’s quick to ask, “Are you happy at me? Do you still love me?” Of course, we always assure her that we do — after all, we’ve never met anyone who could resist her particular charm, her one-sided smile, and the glint in her eye.

She loves being in Middle School and cannot wait to be a teenager (Dec. 11 — she’s counting). She likes learning, especially reading, but she doesn’t necessarily like doing homework, and she wants to choose which books she gets to read. She especially loves reading her childhood favorites: Berenstain Bears, Mercer Mayer’s Little Critters, and Barbie stories.

Most of all, Girly Girl likes her routine. She eats the same thing every day for breakfast: Schwans’ Bright Starts, a breakfast pizza with bacon, scrambled eggs, cheese, and a white sauce on a whole wheat crust. When we are out of Bright Starts (as we were this morning), she is quite put out, but she will settle for something else, like toast and jam or oatmeal. She would be happy eating pizza for lunch and spaghetti for dinner every single day of her life, though she likes other things too: ribs, chicken enchiladas, and lasagna, for instance. For vegetables, she likes only two (beets and spinach), but she loves those!

She is not necessarily a morning person. All summer, she went to bed about 9 p.m. and slept until 10:30 or 11, and she would prefer to do that all year round. She wakes a little grumpy — much like her father — but she and I have made a compromise. I wake her at 6:30, but she doesn’t have to get right up. All she has to do is answer the question: “What do you want for breakfast?” I always know what she wants — I did mention she likes her routine, right? — but she has to actually tell me. Once she does, I got to make it, and she gets to sleep another five to ten minutes, much like how her Daddy hits the snooze button. Once breakfast is ready, however, she gets right up and comes out to eat, even if her eyes are a little droopy.

In general, my daughter is a bright light in our lives. She brings us love and joy, and we are grateful every day that she is a part of our family.

31 Responses to “My Daughter: in a Million Words or Less”

  1. Mom Says:

    What a lovely essay about one of my very favorite people!!! I’m also so glad she is part of OUR family! Did you really say she “loves Middle School” and “can’t wait to be a teenager”??? That sure is a switch from a month ago, she she absolutely was NOT going to be a teenager. I guess she grew up pretty quickly, then.

    • katrinastonoff Says:

      Yep. It took exactly one day in Seventh Grade for her to decide she was OK with moving on from Sixth Grade. She’s back to being delighted that she’s almost a teenager.

      For the rest of you: when we went in to register her for school, she balked and said she didn’t want to move on. “How did I pass Sixth Grade anyway?” she asked.

  2. Steve Freeman Says:

    Thank you for sharing this view of your daughter. I appreciate the time I get to share with her. She keeps things interesting. Just yesterday, I told her about my newest granddaughter, who was born on Wednesday. Her first question was, “Did her mother have to push?” I replied that I was sure she did. Then she tried to get me into a discussion about how a mother can push her baby. I told her to ask her mother! I love that girl!

    • katrinastonoff Says:

      LOL. Thanks for the heads-up! She didn’t mention it yesterday, but I’m sure she won’t forget. I guess I have two and a half hours to decide how much to tell her.

      We appreciate the time you spend with her too. It makes an enormous difference!

  3. Laura Says:

    Oh, how sweet! My girl (who is girly at times, but not at others) will reach teen-dom about 5 months after yours.

    Thanks for sharing with us!

    • katrinastonoff Says:

      So we’re on this roller coaster together then!

      Funny, I raised a boy, so I thought about knew about parenting teens. But he was easy, and I suspect girls are a completely different animal. And this is where my Parent’s Curse kicks in! I was awful to my mother when I was a teen!

  4. Melessa Says:

    I didn’t realize your girl and my girl were 4 days apart. Mine is very anxious to be 13 too. And I doubt I could resist her charm either based on my reaction to her picture. I loved reading this!

  5. trudyj65 Says:

    Beautiful essay! I hope you got an A!!

  6. alwaysjan Says:

    What a cutie. And I can relate to the eating routine as I’m lost without my morning Coke and toast. My younger son can eat the same thing for dinner days in a row. Last night his dad said, “How can you eat the same thing night after night?” My son replied, “How can you say the same thing night after night.” Children can be so wise!

    • katrinastonoff Says:


      Yeah, me too. Gotta have my Diet Coke first thing in the morning, or I can’t wake up. And if I put my keys or my shoes anywhere other than where they belong, I cannot find them.

      And her Daddy is even worse.😉

  7. Kat Bryan Says:

    I think this essay was a great idea and not just for parents of special children. Thanks for sharing it with us.

  8. ginabad Says:

    13 in December? Oh my gosh time flies! What a lovely essay about your beautiful daughter. Of course, one day she will find this and be quite put out for writing so unflinchingly about her, but it’s absolutely wonderful. Wish I could meet her!

    I got more homework this week Amelia as well, what’s up with that?

  9. ikkinlala Says:

    Thank you for sharing this!

  10. Mystica Says:

    Thanks for a very nice post.

  11. Shawnee Says:

    I loved your post, it made me a little teary-eyed. Your daughter sounds amazing and you are so blessed.🙂

  12. Alyce Says:

    That is lovely!

  13. Cindi Says:

    I only have sons, no daughters…You certainly have a lovely daughter
    and she sounds full of spirit. I love it…
    Thanks for sharing!

    • katrinastonoff Says:

      When I was younger, I didn’t want daughters — I figured the parents’ curse would slay me because I was so hard on my mother as a teen.

      But I LOVE having a daughter. When she was a baby, I would walk around in baby sections looking at the adorable little girl clothing and thinking, “I have a daughter!” I was (and remains) a source of endless amazement.

      (I love my sons too, btw. They also are constant sources of wonder.)

  14. Jane Says:

    Thanks for sharing that lovely essay with us, Katrina.

  15. Rene Says:

    That’s such a beautiful essay! I hope she got to read it! She is a beautiful girl and WOW! I can’t believe she’s almost 13!!!
    I just read a great book… The Help. Have you read it? If not, you’ve got to! If so, let me know what you thought. When I read it I thought of you and thought I had to let you know how good it is, since you have recommended so many Greats to me.

    • katrinastonoff Says:

      Yes, she got to read the essay. She got that funny lopsided smile as she read. Made my day!

      The Help is on my TBR shelf. I avoided it for a long time because it just got SO much buzz, but enough people I trust have said I must read it that I finally bought it. And if you liked it too, then I need to read it soon.🙂

  16. Melissa Says:

    Thank you so much for sharing your Girly Girl with us! I love getting to know her better. And I had to laugh at your comment about wanting sons. I really wanted a boy, and was sure Claire was a boy, but now that she’s here, I really can’t imagine having a son.🙂

  17. baby swing sleep Says:

    baby swing sleep…

    […]My Daughter: in a Million Words or Less « Stone SouP[…]…

  18. Anonymous Says:

    good job

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