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Archive for November, 2010

Zoysia ran her hand across her stomach and turned away from the mirror. What had possessed her to throw a pool party for her daughter Nandina’s birthday? She was a mother of three and had no business running around in a swimsuit, despite the crazy, heart-fluttering things that Kurtis whispered in her ear.

But the invitations had been sent, and the cake and balloons were already in place by the pool. So, on with the show it was!

Zoysia had hoped to get some great snaps of the family and their friends, but it seemed that she blinked and the party was over. She ended up with only three photos: one that one of the kids had taken of Violet clowning around in the bathroom…

… a sweet one of Ivy and Kurtis sharing a hug…

… and of course, a shot of the birthday girl.

As Zoysia cleaned up the dishes left on the patio tables, she decided that the party must have been a good one if it had gone by that fast!

Nandina was really growing up and developing her own interests. Instead of a bedtime story, she asked her dad to tell her about art and music. His heart swelled to think that his second daughter might want to follow in his footsteps.

Kale was also learning from the adults in his life. Violet had taken a strong interest in her young nephew and took it on as her personal project to teach him to talk and instill in him a love of life and learning.

And although Kale was not old enough yet to go to school, Nandina was now. And she didn’t think having to get up early for school the morning after her birthday party was at all fair. Not at all.

And when Ivy and Nan were off at school, little man Kale took center stage.

Being older may mean that the girls have to go to school, but it also means that they get to go to the pool after school. Ivy and Nandina didn’t have much in common, but they did both enjoy a refreshing splash and swim. Ivy was glad that it wasn’t crowded, but Nan had hoped to see some of her friends from school there.

When the girls got home, Ivy fired up her EasimBake oven to make a snack, while Nan asked her dad to help her make sense out of her Simlish homework.

On Kurtis’ evenings off, he often tried out new tunes on the family while Zoysia challenged one of the girls to a game of chess.

Nandina wanted to be good friends with her big sister and was very glad when Ivy had time for her.

But sometimes Ivy wanted to be by herself, and that left Nandina to play on her own. She liked to sit on the top of the slide and wonder what her place in the world would be.

Eventually she made enough friends that she invited one over to play after school, but he was in awe of her mom. Nandina knew she was pretty, but really? Her six-year-old buddy was gaga over her mom? Silly boy.

As the kids were learning and growing, Violet and Camellia were working and training. Violet enjoyed orienteering and minerology duties, and Cam spent hour after hour fishing and gardening. They still made time for family, though.

And then, before Zoysia and Kurtis could believe it, they were about to be parents of a teenager. Ivy came running home from the field trip to the stadium, ready for her party.

The family and neighbors gathered around, just as the sun was going down, and Ivy stepped up to the cake. She looked around at the crowd of people and felt like she couldn’t quite get enough of a breath to blow her candles out. It was an awful lot of people.

Nandina could tell that her sister wasn’t really happy, so she cheered even louder to encourage her. Maybe that would help!

Ivy was a teenager. She decided no more bows in her hair. No more crowds when she didn’t want them. She wanted to learn more about the family’s gardening tradition and try to figure out what the deal was with that. And she was going to be fit and smart so no one could make her do what she didn’t want to do, like following nonsensical rules meant for goody-two-shoes. Ivy was her own person.

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