Sunday, April 19, 2009

Hooray for the Nice Girls!

Miss Olivia is turning double digits tomorrow. I can’t believe it and she can’t wait. As most mothers, I can remember every detail about the day she was born.

Yesterday we had a jewelry-making party with nine of her girlfriends. My mom taught the girls how to make beads using polymer clay. Each girl made a focal bead and used an assortment of filler beads to make bracelets. It was a gorgeous day and everyone seemed to have a great time.

My mom often teaches polymer clay workshops to school-aged children and she was really impressed with how well behaved and open everyone was to learning something new. It was my first time seeing my mom in action and she’s incredible. Managing a group of 10 nine and ten year olds isn’t easy but she kept them engaged in the process and everyone left the party with a great looking bracelet.

All of the girls, except one, Miss Jessica, go to school with Olivia. Jessica is our neighbor. Prior to the party, Loverman and I stressed to Olivia the importance of making Jessica feel welcome among all of her school friends. Olivia assured us she would and I have to say everyone was really warm and friendly with Jessica.

I was struck by how well everyone got along, how helpful and thoughtful the girls were with each other. It really got me to thinking about “mean girls.” Will any of the sweet young ladies who spent yesterday afternoon with us turn into a “mean girl?” You know what I mean… when will the competitiveness, pettiness, judgment and jealousy set in? Will the day come when they are no longer friendly and accommodating to each other? Is there any way to ensure sweetness I saw them exhibit towards each other? I sure hope so, but if not, what sparks the change?


Lisa Blah Blah said...

Happy Birthday to Olivia! What a cute group! They even LOOK sweet and nice.

I wish I knew what makes the mean girls mean. I work with someone who is a grown-up version. Chronologically grown-up, that is. It is no fun. No fun at all.

Anonymous said...

It's all about self-esteem and outside influences. Part of what makes those girls so sweet is that they are comfortable with who they are. Unfortunately, those who are not comfortable in their own skin, and be mean girls fairly early on--like you would have already seen it rear its ugly head in this crew.

So hopefully Livy's friends will just continue on their current path and there won't be too many outside influences telling them, it's time to start competing with each other. Competition is fine if girls are taught to compete from within--to compete with yourself to make you a better you. Hopefully the moms of such nice kids are encouraging that mindset.

Nerd Girl said...

Happy Birthday Olivia! I hope that she and her friends will stay sweet for years to come.

Tamara said...

There is nothing more beautiful than a girl. Look at them--full of fun and hope and ideas and moxie. Girls rule. I'm glad I have one. I hope she has as nice a group of friends as yours does.

Angella Lister said...

What a special time! I remember when my own daughter was turning 10(she's 15 now). She too had, and still has, a really special group of friends. New double-digit girls really cherish their friendships, so it's wonderful your girl has a group that she feels comfortable a secure with. My own experience is that they make it through the mean girl phase just fine. They have learned to give each other space, and by now know the quirks of each other's personalities. They get through those occasional mean girl days by treating them as just that, individual isolated bad days and not the whole truth. And when one of the group is being a little mean, the others gently, lovingly reel her back in. That's the gift of their having a history together. They know each other so well. They have deep emotional cushions for one another.

Congrats to you too. It was your birthday 10 years ago too!(And thanks for stopping by my blog earlier. Love that Ms. Tam!)