Ever since the kids were born, I have been recording small but meaningful manifestos of their lives…who they are, what they say and do, little quirks that make them uniquely them. Throughout the year I make notes here and there and try to capture as much as possible, as I know that these small things may change way too quickly as they grow more into themselves, lose their innocence and become less childlike day by day.

Evie, yesterday you became 8 years old. It’s been 2920 days since you gave me the most searing childbirth pain as you were a posterior baby. I remember your dad asking me to describe the pain of the contractions. I told him to imagine banging your finger in a car door every 1 minute for hours and hours…and then to multiply that pain by about 100 times.

Since that moment that you made me a mum, you have added an element to my life that I never knew was possible. You taught me (and continue to every day) what it means to raise another human being and how important it is to nurture and protect you, yet at the same time let you lead your own life, make your own mistakes and forge ahead with your own identity. I have said before and I will say again, you are a true old soul, with a kindness way beyond your years, an innate desire to do good in this world and a quiet confidence to do things your way, often against the grain of what everyone else is doing.

There are millions of moments that have made up who you are. Here are a few unique things of what I remember when you are 7 years old, and the annual birthday interview. Some of these character traits may stick around for a while and others will disappear. And that’s ok, because you will continue to grow into yourself, in exactly the way that you choose to. I love you lots.

Love Mummy

What I remember when you were 7 years old…..

  1. You have found your favourite D-class celebrities on YouTube (and I am starting to get paranoid about who might start stalking you online)
  2. When you feel those moments of affection for your younger brother, you call him “smoodgie woogie”
  3. Your wardrobe tastes are starting to evolve and you have hit the ‘I-live-in-Melbourne-therefore-I-must-wear-black” phase
  4. This was the year that you pretty much banned me from using plastic bags at the supermarket and have become even more environmentally aware
  5. After a yearly visit to a shortened production of the Australian Ballet classics, this was the first year that you sat through a full 3 hour ballet production of ‘Alice in Wonderland’ and loved it!



6. Your first year of dance competitions and my taste of the hours and dedication required to be a ballet mum! You danced with such pride and joy that made my heart want to burst out of me and leap from the audience into the stage with you. You showed me that you have developed a maturity to know that the most important thing is not about the placing you get but about taking part and having fun.


7. Another first this year was your grade 1 Piano exam. You achieved honours with distinction and I guess my nagging you to practise every day really did pay off. 🙂  You took part in your second piano recital and played your piece beautifully!

Evie’s Piano recital Nov 2017 from Teri Lichtenstein on Vimeo.

8. You developed a funny habit of sticking your tongue out at your parents and your brother whenever you are in a bad mood.

9. Your kindness is displayed in such a myriad of ways, especially when it comes to helping this less fortunate than you. Earlier this year you used your own pocket money to pay it forward and buy not one, but two coffee’s for homeless people who could not afford to buy for themselves.

10. I am so glad that you have not outgrown your love of pretend play and your dolls. You really treat your dolls like your own real life babies and nurture them with utmost care and tenderness.

11. You and your brother love nothing better than being silly together. This next year will be the last that you share a bedroom together before we move into our new home, and whilst I know it is time, I will miss the giggles and chats that I hear when the two of you have gone to bed…or when you decide to come running out of your room dressed as ninjas with undies on your heads.


An 8 year old Birthday Interview

How old are you ? Eight (well, 7 until 2pm)

Who is your best friend?  Hmmm, that is hard. Amber and Saskia

What is your favourite subject at school?  Art

What is your favourite colour?      Blue

What is your favourite food? Lollies

What’s your worst food?  Tomatoes

What song do you like to sing? Feed the Birds (Mary Poppins)

What do you like to do with Jakey Play

What do you like to do with mommy and daddy? Play games

What is your favourite toy?     Arlee (my new doll)

What do you want to be when you are bigger? A piano teacher

What makes you happy?  Cake

What makes you sad? Snails

What is your favourite iPad app? Rider and YouTube

What is your favourite book?    Maddie West and the Tongue Taker

Where do you like to go on the weekends? Go to friends houses

What is the best part of your birthday?     Presents

What’s your favourite birthday present? Arlee

What are you grateful for today?    That it is my birthday

What is one goal that you would like to achieve when you are 8 years old? Learn every language in the world