Five.

The number of fingers on one hand. The number of arms on a starfish. How many senses we have. That’s how old she is.

We just cleared one of San Francisco parents’ biggest milestones: we participated in the public schools’ crazy, complicated enrollment lottery and got our #2 school, which is one of the closest to our home. It would be difficult to do better, especially since our #1 school only had 20 spaces and is constantly in high demand. When Devin took her in to enroll, she was disappointed that kindergarten doesn’t start for another five months.

But she is celebrating five in other ways. She got her first transit card (kids under five ride for free), so now she can go in and out of the fare gates on her own. This is both good and bad; bad because if she tags it the wrong way, it incurs a rather expensive “excursion fee.” She’s only had the card about two weeks and has probably racked up a couple excursion fees already.

She has also made her first “keep out” signs for her bedroom door. Two, actually. One says, “Attention only people that I know.” The other, more explicit one, says “Do not come in — only Laurel, Papa, Mama, Sam [her best friend].” All of this is written in five-year-old phonetic spelling.

Speaking of which…

This was her birthday “wish list” that she made in mid-February. It says:

“Stuffed mouse
Pop-open ice cream cone
A police car that has doors that pop open.”

… no, really.

We actually had to postpone her birthday party, which was scheduled for a few days after her birthday, because she woke up with a stomach bug that morning. On the plus side, I finally convinced her to try throwing up in the toilet. You know, instead of in the bed. I think she gets now why this is an improvement. It also meant I didn’t have to wash her sheets three times in a row, so I’m much happier than you’d expect the parent of a child who was throwing up the day of her birthday party to be.

She’s a busy kid, as always. Making art continues to be one of her favorite things, although lately she’s really into making little books. Some of them only have photos, while others have photos and stories/text to go with them. More than once lately, bedtime has consisted of “reading” books she’s written. I’m pretty sure she has already written more than I have! She’s also continuing to play Minecraft with Devin, although a week or so ago he set her up to play by herself, and after some initial frustration at not being able to figure out how to use the mouse and Devin’s totally unmarked keyboard, she figured it out. And all the things she’s done in the game before, mostly by telling Devin what to do, she did herself. It was pretty impressive.

And lastly, a few recent Laurel-isms:

I went into her room one morning to wake her up. She opened her eyes and asked, “Are you bubblegum?”

After seeing a police car one day, she got upset and said, “Awww. I can’t be a policeman when I grow up!”
Me: “Why not?”
Laurel: “Because Sam’s going to grow up to be a monster and I’m going to grow up and be with HIM.”

Also recently:
Laurel: “Mommy, can you start giving me money?”
Me: “What did you do to earn money?”
Laurel: “I asked for it.”

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