There are all sorts of signs of change around our place this week.
Our youngest will turn 12 on Tuesday. Which really means he's entering his 13th year. We have a teenager in our midst, heaven help us. But he'll be the last as his older siblings are all in their early 20s. He has started 7th grade (or 5th as it's known in France; they count from 12 down to zero, whereas we count from K through 12).
He went to his first boy-girl house party yesterday, a female classmate's birthday bash, which the French kids call "une Boum" to distinguish it from a kiddie party which would be called simply a "fête d'anniversaire". There were around 24 or 25 kids present; there was room to play football in the dead-end street; but there was also DANCING and our kid apparently did dance! With whom, we have no idea; Georges has instructed me not to ask questions such as "Did you dance with a girl?" -- EVER. I guess with boys you can't ask those sorts of questions as a parent? I think his siblings could ask, though, so from now on we may have to send them in as our spies if we need information.
Last night, I heard him talking on Skype while gaming with one of his buddies, and I swear his voice had gotten deeper since I saw him for lunch only 3 days ago. Maybe it was my imagination or maybe he had a bit of a cold or hoarse throat from the Parisian pollution... or maybe the hormone train has finally left the station. I did catch him watching a pretty girl in a store a couple of weeks ago. Oh la la.
As you know, I'll be happily attending my naturalization ceremony on Thursday afternoon. But on Friday, my acte de naissance already came in the mail, so it's already starting to feel more real, although I find myself having to say it to myself every so often so it sinks in: I am French. I am French. I AM French. I am FRENCH. JE SUIS FRANÇAIS!
And it appears the #1 Son and his girlfriend, who have been camping on our sleeper sofa for the vast majority of the last 3 months since they came back from doing their year abroad in Montreal, have finally found an apartment. They have been going on visit after visit, have submitted their rental dossier numerous times but have never gotten a "Oui" -- until Friday morning. I saw a few photos and it looks like a cute place in a great neighborhood in the 13th, near metro Corvisart and my friend Aimee's tea salon. They haven't signed yet so we won't officially celebrate until they have, but all signs are looking very positive. It has been nice having them around since we missed them a lot this past year, but our apartment is far too small for long term sofa-camping, and I'm sure we'll all be a lot more comfortable once they're installed in their own place together. It's very exciting for them to be embarking on this next phase of their life together... and it's exciting for me to get my house back to normal soon!
I swear, this week is so chock full of good news and positive change that if La Fille calls us up with some spectacular news of her own, it will be a total home run for our family. And Georges and I might just BURST.
So today I made a pancake breakfast to celebrate all the delicious transformations in our lives. A butterfly just felt like the right symbol this week.