Monday, January 21, 2008

Tori at seven is heaven

Much to our shock and awe, Tori turned seven last week. While we told her stories of her babyhood, she shrugged them off but the twins were transfixed. They can say with authority oh, that was when Tori was in London, or Paris, or Romania and pretty much get it right. Tori does seem seven with her teeth falling out, her pants all too short now and her busy schedule at school. It has been fast and furious but tons and tons of fun.

Following her most recent interest, we hosted an art party for 15 of her friends from school and our apartment building. We had great fun decorating our building’s clubhouse with streamers and balloons in primary colors, easels, paintbrushes everywhere and of course original art work. Typical of Tori, she spends lots of energy on the party invites and gift bags (both were adorable), but all the rest is somewhat secondary. But all the rest was good, even if the kids did realistic self-portraits despite Tori’s desire for abstract self-portraits.

The planning of the party was much easier this year for a host of reasons. While the concept of art is much easier to grapple with than Ancient Egypt, a large store (maybe a quarter the size of the average Target) has opened. This store, Spotlight, is sort of a mix between Target, a craft store and a Bed, Bath and Beyond. It is a bit of a hodge podge but the store has party supplies and an art supply section and we were covered. Much of Hong Kong life is small stores and lots of little shopping runs, which can be adjusted too but not so easily at party planning time.

Another reason the party was easier was that we were no longer the new family in town. People have come and people have gone. In fact one little kid we know has moved to Switzerland and back to Hong Kong again in the span of a year. As we compiled pictures of Tori on her birthday for various games, Phi and I noticed that we have only been in the same place for Tori’s birthday for her fourth and fifth year and now for her sixth and seventh. Tori really seems at ease with her mix of friends from a number of different countries and more surprising, even a few of a different gender! Tori has always been very girly but is now even making friends with a few of the long dreaded boys.


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