The Tovsky Tribe

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Saturday, January 7, 2017

A Letter to my Son on his 8th Birthday!

Dear Turner,

Cool as can be

Wishing for the stars

This morning, while I was still lying in bed, I was presented with the Facebook memory of your 5th birthday video. This very day, just 3 years earlier. You were magnificent. Magnificently beautiful. Magnificently adorable. Magnificently hilarious.  You spoke, while grinning with delight, with confidence and humor and a sense of wisdom beyond your years. You were still 4 at that moment with just hours remaining until you were the "whole hand."  Your eyes were filled with warmth and sunshine and happiness. Your voice was raspy with imperfect words. Your thoughts were pure and real and amusing and, somehow, even profound...for a pre-schooler. Watching it brought me right back to that moment and I was delighted by the memory.


Then, when I thought about it, I was delighted all over again. Because, Turner, you are still very much that same boy.  This is proven not only by your same selection of favorite colors (that includes nearly the whole rainbow) but is proven everyday in the person you are.  You are that same sweet, smart, funny kid.  Your face looks exactly the same, your mannerisms are still as precise, and you're just as thoughtful and calculated in your words as you were then.

8!  8 is my favorite number and, perhaps not by coincidence, my favorite age. Eight is the brink of big boy hood while hanging on to the end of the little boy life. 8 gets jokes told by his big brothers while still enjoying some of his baby brother's toys.  8 is independent and capable yet still needing cuddles and attention.  8 is full of conversation and opinions and also full of hugs and kisses.  8 has friends and social activities but doesn't need entertainment all of the time and isn't expecting a full social calendar.  8 has more confidence in his abilities and is more willing to try new things. 8, as they often say, is great.

You are now in 2nd grade.  Your teacher, Mrs. Rowan, left on maternity leave in November and Mrs. Demusz has taken over.  You seem to really love 2nd grade and have settled in nicely to your friends and school life.  You like math and usually do pretty well with it but struggle a bit with your reading, something we are working on. We celebrated your 8th birthday, over Christmas Break, with your school friends at a really awesome virtual reality gaming center.  Everyone had a great time. I love seeing you amongst your peers.  Then, we will celebrate with the family on Sunday.

In so many ways you are still the same boy you always were.  There is nobody I can count on more than you to lend a helping hand or to know which way is up or where something is or where it belongs.  There is no one who knows the rules better or insists more that they be followed (even if you yourself don't want to always follow them!)  You love to run errands with both daddy and I and just want to be involved and be included.  You are curious and ask a lot of questions, and you often force those you are asking to think deeper and wider.  You are wise and have an intrinsic understanding about the world.  You love to sing and to dance and to listen to music and have been known to stop what you are doing just to bust out a few moves or a few lines Of song and then continue on with whatever it was you were doing before the music in your head started.  You like to play games and you like to be with us.  And, Turner, we all love to be with you, too.

In the recent past you have gotten more competitive and more aggressive and more physical, which is a change from the 5 year old who played soccer and would not dare try to take a ball away from the other team.  You started playing basketball this year and are having so much fun. You love going to the practices and love to practice at home and tell us what you learned.  Your first game is coming up this weekend and you are, we all are, very excited.  Your team consists mostly of 2nd graders from Richboro Elementary school so it is even more fun for you to play with your friends.  When we play basketball at home you have a good shot, aren't afraid to get in on the play, and have been known to win Knockout and Horse on many occasion.

You are also considering playing baseball this coming Spring.  We will have to see what you decide....speaking of decisions, you are still not a very good decision maker.  Your indecisiveness is based on your desire to never disappoint anybody and I think you are worried that you could choose "Wrong!"  There is very rarely a wrong choice in the decisions you have to make and you will never disappoint by choosing what is best for you instead of deciding based on what is best for others.  But, that is who you are, considerate, empathetic, concerned and thoughtful. These are not often traits found in children yet these are exactly the traits that make up a large part of who you are.

In the coming week you will begin guitar lessons, a hanukkah and birthday present given to you by so many.   You have been asking to play guitar for some time and I am excited for you to begin. Not only do you have a love for music but you have a way of committing yourself to your passions and becoming determined to be great at whatever is.  I hope you find a real connection to the music world and guitar becomes a thing you love.

You seem to make friends easily and get along well with most people (except for Ryder, at times!) and though you have a long list of 2nd grade friends (Chase, Grayson, Michael, Gavin, Alex, Billy, Zachary, Jake, Jagger, and Bram to name a few,) you are most often found hanging out with and interacting with the 5th graders.  Many of Chase and Ryder's closest friends consider you a friend, too, and it is pretty amazing to witness the bonds that you are able to form.

You are a little brother that loves to instigate and show your muscle when necessary, perhaps reminding your big brothers that you are not so little anymore.  But, you are also a little brother who looks up adoringly at his big brothers and knows just how lucky he is to have them.  And, don't worry, buddy, they don't always say it, but it is clear that they know they have a very cool and awesome little brother in you.

As a big brother you make every effort possible to take care of Decker.  Toddlers can be difficult, particular in ways, and yet unable to communicate their needs.  But, even if Decker makes it tough, you continue to show him that you love him, are there for him, want to help him and teach him and just want to be with him.  It won't be long before the two of you are outside playing together and the bond you two will have will be like no other.

I haven't had you to the doctor yet for your well check up but you still seem to be on the taller side for your age (and a little on the heavier side, too!)  

Turner, you have always been a special little guy and no matter how old you get and how big you are I am confident that you will continue to hold on to that little piece of magic that makes you the special person that you are.  I hope that your kindness continues to grow, your sense of humor continues to flow, your eyes continue to shine, and your mind continues to expand.  There isn't one day that goes by that I am not so very proud of everything that you are and I will always support you being whoever it is you are going to be.

8 year old video

Happy birthday, Turner.  

I love you so....


Turner at 7

Growing in to the birthday shirt a bit more every year

Flaming basketball cake

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy 2017

2016 was a historical year. It was flooded with celebrity deaths that were heartbreaking and littered with political craziness in the ridiculous election of Hillary Clinton v. Donald Trump that, somehow, has Donald Trump as our President-Elect. It was a year of a lot of hard work, a lot (A LOT) of activity, so much hockey, a good amount of baseball, tons of family and tons of friends. And, though I can't say it was a bad year by any standards, as all years do, it had to end. We celebrated the welcoming of 2017 at the Metzger's and had a nice time, though it felt weird to be without the Klaus's, the Levin's, and the Cohen's. And, Decker was still awake when the ball touched ground at exactly midnight. Welcome to 2017, baby boy.

We missed you too!

The first minutes of 2017 and this guy is bright eyed


Excited to party