Penny is off at her prom this evening. We are so happy that she chose to go and work towards one of our goals for her, which is to attend 3 activities at her school. She is out with her friend, Lesley, who is her “date”.
The last several weeks, since before we left for Rhode Island, have been spent obsessing about hair. She asked me to take her to Wal-Mart to buy a straightener so she could curl her hair. I asked her why she didn’t just want to buy a curling iron, but it turns out that Penny’s mom’s chief complaint is that Penny doesn’t brush her hair, so Penny feels that rather than taking 20 seconds to brush her hair, she could straighten it and her mom would never know the difference. Anyway, we found a straightener “as seen on TV” that claimed with a flick of the wrist it would also curl, so she bought it.
We wound up having to watch an instructional DVD and we got OK results with it after practicing quite a bit. Penny came floating home from school one day with a single limp curl in her hair declaring that she had finally worked it out and didn’t her hair look great?! It was then I decided we were buying a curling iron. We practiced with it the first night, and her hair was magically curly, much to her delight. (The right tool works wonders!) So tonight, we went to town and curled her up for her big night… She was so happy with the results.
Another goal Penny had set for herself was to meet a celebrity while in the United States. I was so excited this week when a friend told me that Paul Burrell was coming to Fredericksburg. I have long been a very great admirer of the late Princess Diana and while I never got to meet her, meeting the man she called her “rock” was as good as it was going to get. I have gotten Penny quite interested in the British royal family during her stay here, so I asked her if she wanted to go and meet Paul Burrell and she said she would love to! Thus her first celebrity meeting was inked.
We went over this morning to the furniture store where the event was being held—it seems Mr. Burrell has had a hand in designing his own line of furniture based on the furniture of the royal family. He was also signing any books that you had and you could buy books once you got there. I happened to have two of his books and picked up one more while we were over there… Penny was quite shy at first and didn’t get a book signed, contenting herself to take pictures of Leah and I.
I did talk her into getting her own picture taken with him, and she was pretty happy about that!
But as we were walking back to the car, I asked her if she didn’t really want to get the last book signed for herself and she hesitated. But I could tell she wanted to, so I gave her my last book and told her we’d go back. She said she didn’t know what to talk about, so I suggested she ask him about the Royal Wedding that we just watched, which is exactly what she did. He didn’t mind signing her book at all and told her what a grand event the wedding had been and that he thought Kate looked “radiant”. And when they were done, so did Penny. She clutched that book to her very tightly, and I know she’ll treasure it for a long time to come.
It was a glorious day for me, to be sure; as I told him, it was an honor just to be in the same room, much less shake his hand and have him put an arm around me for a photo. But it was also special as a mom to see my two girls interact with him (he actually got down on the floor to interact with Leah, who was MADLY in love), and for Penny to be brave and go speak to him.
In a few hours, I’ll go retrieve her from her big night and our grand Saturday will be but a memory. But it was a great day indeed!