Sweet Sixteen!

It was Daniela’s sixteenth birthday yesterday, which shared the day with the Super Bowl this year, and made for some celebration acrobatics to try and have two parties at the same time. (Not sure how successful we were at it, but An Attempt Was Made.)

The good news is that she had a fantastic friend party on Friday night, so I think that makes up for things somewhat. (Seriously. She got the idea to do a MarioKart tournament, and she spent a ton of time figuring out how she wanted to run it, what rules to use, how to set up brackets, which tracks to play on. The whole nine yards. She and I spent a couple of hours trying different speeds with different options to find the perfect balance, and then she invited 15 friends for an evening of intense racing action. It was even better that she came out victorious, after a hard fought race to the top.)

It’s very easy for people to forget Daniela is only 16. She’s a lifeguard at the UMF pool, and she’s often assumed to be a college student, despite the fact that she’s a sophomore in high school. Beyond just looking mature for her age, she acts far more grown up as well. It’s been a lot of fun seeing her grow up and come into her own as she’s figured out who she is and what she wants to do. What is that?

These days, she’s got a number of passions. She’s still way into playing cello and will happily do that for a long stretch, just to decompress. She’s a big movie buff, and she loves to plan things out (like the MarioKart party). She’s great at looking at the big picture and working toward long term goals in a way I couldn’t have even comprehended at her age. She likes board games and baking, and she’s a big fan of Nordic skiing, and she loves working out in the gym. (I know. Are we sure she’s my daughter??)

Naturally, the older she gets, the busier she gets, and this is actually new territory for us, as when Tomas was this age, we all went into pandemic lockdown mode for basically the next two years. On the other hand, we got used to having a kid be out and about a bunch in high school once Tomas hit his senior year, so it’s not completely new, I suppose. As far as school goes, she’s in Franklin County Fiddlers, on the Nordic Team, and she plans to do track or lacrosse in the spring.

In any case, sorry this is a day late, Daniela. I blame the Super Bowl. (And the fact that I don’t blog on Sundays, but still . . .)

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