Monday, January 25, 2010

A First Time for Everything

This is Perri.

I love this kid. Happy, quick-witted, bright, athletic, fun to be around, crazy-cool fashion sense. She has been a joy since the day she was born.

A few of her firsts, and please bear with me. This is not a laundry list of her perfections. We all know there is no such thing as a perfect child.

And if we don't, we'll learn soon enough.

*Slept all night her first night home from the hospital.
*Pitched her first (and only...guess that's the important part) fit in public when she was still in one of these:

*Read her first book when she was barely 4 years old.
*Moved to first grade after spending only 13 days in kindergarten...she tested out in reading (above a 5th grade level) and was bored.
*First moved into the gifted program after being tested in second grade.

I won't go on. You get the point. Easy baby, easy child.

The 'first' that has my stomach in knots at the moment is less than stellar. It is not something about which to brag. It is, indeed, doing this:

Last night the Hubster and I had to dole out Perri's first real punishment.

Honestly. The first time we've ever had to take away things, limit freedom, lay down the law, etc.

And it is KILLING me.

The Hubster isn't enjoying it much either.

I know it's pretty awesome that she made it to the age of 12 without any serious punishment being needed prior to now, but this is pretty serious stuff. At least from where I'm standing. You see, it involves school and that is something we don't take lightly around here. School is her job. It's what is required of her. It is to be taken seriously and she is to do her best at all times.

And for the first time, she didn't.

This year it seems she has lost her love of reading for pleasure
but each nine weeks she is required to attain 30 Accelerated Reader points. It is part of her grade. We knew she was short on points a couple of weeks ago and the deadline was quickly approaching. We reminded her. She assured us she was working on it and it wouldn't be a problem.

The deadline was Friday. She spent Thursday and Friday playing catch-up. It didn't work.

She fell short by 4.5 points.

She will earn back her laptop when she has all 34.5 points required to bring her up to speed for this new nine week period that begins today.

Yes, the 4.5 she didn't manage to achieve last time around PLUS the 30 for the upcoming grading period. If she does it in a week???

If she procrastinates until the week before points are due, so be it. She'll do so without her laptop. And her beloved phone.

Wow. We. Are. MEAN.

We just want her to take what she has and put it to good use. No slackin' where school is concerned.

But we love her from the
top of her pretty little head to the tips of her multicolored toenails.

And we wouldn't trade her for all the perfect kids in the world.


  1. I know that had to be hard. I'm sure I'll be there one day...and wow, straight to first grade.

  2. Aww, I know just how you feel. :( Hopefully this will be a hard lesson well learned for her and she won't make this kind of error in judgment often.

  3. Aw, I hate that too ;( It's no fun being a parent sometimes...but she sounds like an awesome girl...way to go mom :)

    Alex is only in first grade and has an AR goal to reach each semester...he barely pulled it off this last time...and we were the same way. It's not for a grade, yet...but we told him he needs to do his best! It's so hard to convey the importance sometimes! ugh! Good luck...stay strong! You're so blessed with such an amazing girl :)

  4. Up until now she is just evening out the world for my kids...

    She is a cutie and will probably be just fine after the shock wears off!

  5. 12 years old.
    She has entered the "zone".
    It will get worse before it gets better. Parenting teens is not for the faint of heart. When they have these "goof-ups" they are learning life lessons. Make a copy of today's Post and put it up somewhere to give to her (perhaps at graduation)at a later time. You'll both be amazed at how far you've come.

  6. This is the first and hopefully the last time she thought she'd get by on a wing and a prayer. Better to learn young!!

    And she is a beautiful young lady, Kelli!!


  7. I love how you put this together... the pictures are perfect and the parenting is right on! :)


  8. Parenting isn't easy, that's for sure--but you've done a good job!

  9. Julie over at The Harwards just did a post on the worlds meanest parents, and me and my husband fit the bill :-) Perri sounds like a wonderful young lady and I'm sure you and your husband are the reason.


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