Thursday, October 4, 2007

The Progression of School Pictures

I have picture frames here at work that house my kids' school photos. Each year, when I get the new pictures, I put them in front of the last picture. Hollywood just got her 8th grade pictures back. She says she hates them, but they are great. Except for the fact that she looks like she's seventeen in them.

All of her old pictures are still in that frame. This morning, I pulled them out and looked at them. There's her first grade picture where she's missing her two front teeth. She's wearing a pretty light green sweater and has her hands beneath her chin and the sweetest little smile. Her freckles are visible on her tiny little nose.

Then there's her second grade picture, the only one we have of her with short hair. It's an adorable shoulder length bob, and she has a cute little red clip pulling her hair out of her face. She's wearing a black and white hounds tooth jumper over a white shirt. The jumper has red heart shaped buttons on them. So sweet!

Her hair is longer again in her third grade picture. She's got teeth that are too big for her mouth, full of the spaces where her new teeth will eventually grow in. She's wearing a dark purple turtleneck sweater. I remember third grade being a tough year - girls were mean at the school she went to, and she got into a few spats that hurt her feelings.

She still looks like a little girl in her fourth grade picture. Her hair is really long in this one, and it's parted straight down the middle. Her teeth have filled in and she looks so much like her dad in this one that it's kind of freaky. In fourth grade, Hollywood was into sports and school. It was her first year at the school she goes to now, and it was a good transition for her.

Fifth grade is when it all starts to change. She's wearing a black shirt that has a rhinestone studded 'B' on the chest. Her hair is long still, and she just looks older. Not a little kid anymore. This was her Avril Lavigne stage. She dressed like Avril, sang her songs, started hounding us to buy her a guitar. I can see that little Avril in this picture.

In sixth grade she's wearing a pink shirt - which is pretty odd for her. She's got a few layers put in her hair and is wearing lip gloss. She looks older than in the past, and vaguely Barbielike. Maybe it's the pink shirt. In sixth grade she started to notice boys as more than playmates. She had her first 'boyfriend' (if you can call it that in sixth grade without giggling) and things began to get interesting.

I don't have her seventh grade picture in this frame because Hollywood hated it. It was an odd angle and her neck looked really tiny in it.

But her eighth grade picture just changes it all. She's wearing a small amount of black eyeliner, but no other makeup, and yet she looks so mature! Her hair is long, with a few visible highlights. She's wearing her boys' football jersey, because pictures were taken on a Thursday, and the team wears their jerseys on Thursdays before the games. She's the football manager, so she gets to wear one too. You can actually see that she has breasts in this picture, Lord help us. She honest to God looks like she's seventeen. And she's beautiful.

It's so strange looking at this progression. She's the same kid, only older and filled with the knowledge that each experience has given her. In each picture I can see where she was in life on the days they were taken. Where, oh where did that toothless first-grader in the light green sweater go? The one who would cry for hours (seriously) if she saw a kitty who'd been hit by a car on the side of the road. Oh I know she's still there, deep inside that girl wearing the football jersey... It's just hard to see her grow up so quickly!


Andrea said...

My heart is swollen with sympathy for you right now. Maybe I'm just an emotional twit today, but there are tears in my eyes from the thought of how quickly youth becomes maturity.

*sigh* I think it's time for a poor-man's mocha. I just need a little pick-me-up. :)

Jenster said...

*sigh* First of all - what a bittersweet thing. Second of all - I kick myself on a regular basis for not doing those frames for my kids. I have all their pictures so maybe I can do it after the fact.

Swishy said...

Ohhhhhhhh! What a sweet post.