The Boy recently turned 11. I'm in complete denial even though he has definitely made the turn to looking more man-ish than boy-ish. I figure once his facial hair starts coming in, I can live a fairly nice life in denial.
This year, The Boy felt very lucky as his birthday day fell on a Saturday. We gave him all the choices and he sure did push us around. His first activity forced us all to awaken early on Saturday and return to the scene of one of my most recent crimes.
You all might remember The Hike of Death? We shall never forget it in this family. Which is why I thought we'd never return to that particular park. The Boy had other plans. He's obviously one of those "if you fall off a horse, you get right back on" people. He must take after his father.
He wanted to stick to the safe trail. The one that if you dawdle takes 5 minutes to walk. It can't even be considered a hike. Apparently, he's not stupid.
It was a beautiful morning for hiking. It gave us lots of time, well 5 minutes anyway, to reflect on how much The Boy has grown and how great of a kid he is. The past two years have seen him mature into a confident young man.
The Girl and he have become closer and learned that they can rely on each other. They have both mentioned that the other is their best friend. I couldn't be happier for them. The Boy talks to The Girl about things that he feels he can't share with us. She guides him through as well as we would. I know, because she then comes and lets me know where he's at, without breaking his confidence.
We are looking forward to what 11 brings. Knowing he can handle it now. I might be getting closer to being able to cut those apron strings. I suppose he'd look mighty silly going of to Jr. High with them next year. This is our last year of elementary school. Something, when we first started with The Girl 10 years ago, that seemed so far away. Those years have flown by and I would like to think that we did our most to appreciate them. I know that I will be so much more appreciative of the next 10 years as we send our kids out into the world to find their way. May they always know that the doors to their family home are open to them and theirs.
Even if they do plan hikes a little differently now.
As we were leaving, I realized why The Boy wasn't so worried about returning to The Hike of Death spot.