Twinkletoes left our home today, soaring. Yeah, this amazing daughter has been acting like she’s ready to leave since she was about 4 years old – and today she got to make good on her long time readiness to be on her own. Twinkletoes left for college. She packed herself up, picked up her bro (Waffles) and his friend (SoccerQueen), and they moved her into the Big 10. As she prepared to leave, the ‘moment’ hit me. I cried the ugly cry. Sweet Twinkletoes paused and hugged me one more time. I’m so humbled by her intellect, her drive, her discipline. She’s the kid who traveled with me in Ireland, notebook in hand, recording every stop, every picture, every sunset. When I asked “who wants to….” she offered an immediate “yes!” She’s the girl who sat with her grandma who in her last days couldn’t speak, and gently and tenderly showed her images from a photo album, pausing only to let her sweet grandmother take it in with her only working part; her eyes. She’s the one who sat on the couch her entire first year of preschool and then traveled to Ecuador alone in high school to visit a friend she was meeting for the first time. She’s the girl who bucket bathed in Nicaragua for 8 weeks, with nary a complaint. She’s the girl who wrote an 86 page story when she was 9. She’s the girl who ballroom dances with beauty and grace. She’s the girl who makes me so proud to hear the word “mommy” addressed to me….and she’s now in residence at college. You can see in these pictures, I’m not the only one who is going to miss her. We love you Twinkletoes!