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My Tweenager


Rare Bird is in full tilt tweendom. She’s all about being in her room, listening to music, playing with her hamster, texting, watching teen shows or practicing bass and guitar. It’s cute. I have to squelch my urge to push her outside and say “go play!” like I try to do with Finn because, as she has told me, she’s older now and doesn’t “play.”

I so enjoy being with her. She’s smart, observant, creative, sweet and incredibly empathic. Her head is in the clouds most of the time, which can be frustrating as the mama, but tis often the case with smart creative types, so I try to have a sense of humor about it. (“try” being the operative word)

At 10, she already knows about everything you could possible think of so there is no need to have any “talk” or embarrassing afterschool special moment. We told her about sex at 5 so it’s just been an ongoing conversation. We’ve covered everything in a very matter of fact way.

One day, a few months ago, she said “I think I want a bra.” “Yeah, we should probably get one.” I said while pulling up GapBody online and checking out the cute pullover versions.

She wore it for a week and declared “Bras are uncomfortable!” I said “Yes, they are! Why do you think I take mine off the second we get in the house?”

Same thing happened with shaving. She said she wanted to shave. I showed her how and bought her some razors and shave gel. I told her it was a pain to keep up, but she wanted to do it. A week later she said “Shaving is a pain!”


I guess my point is, I wanted her foray into teenagerhood (is that a word?) to be smooth and organic, not awkward and fraught with shame and weird conversations. So far, so good.

Since she was little, I have tried to educate H (and Finny too!) about the importance of taking care of your body, including your skin, teeth and hair. (Finn wants a Clarisonic for Christmas. A fact that delights me. He won’t get one. Too spendy.)

I tell them “Your teeth are the jewelry of your face. You have to take care of them!” (Other rampant Emilyisms: Mommies are Magical and Weird is Wonderful – someone please make me a t-shirt in a script font of that last one!)

I’m not trying to turn Hadley into a product whore but I do think it’s important to be aware of quality beauty products and brands. That said, have you seen The Willa line? This suuuuuper darling tween named Willa, and her mother, developed a skincare line for girls.

I bought the basics for HJ and am trying to get her into the habit of washing her face every night and applying moisturizer. Willa’s tag line is “Start Young. Stay Young.”  I subscribe to her Facebook feed and she’s so freaking darling, fresh and young, it makes me feel like the Cryptkeeper.  (That show was so good!)


She has also been loving her Tangle Teezer.  I know it seems gimmicky and I was dubious but the thing works and Hadley loves to brush her hair with it.


I do have moments where I think “where has the time gone?” when I see my strawberry blond girl sprouting up and morphing into a little lady, but for the most part, I’m really loving this age. She’s so interesting and interested, two traits that I adore. Traits that my Dad possessed as well, which I love.

Hadley, please know that I am proud of you every moment of every day. It is a privilege to not only be your mama, but also to be in your orbit and soak up all of your sparkly magic. xoxo Mom  

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