Take two

Here's Maddy's first second day of school, sophomore year. It was a rainy + chilly day, perfect for the cheerful yellow rainboots and a cozy sweater. 

Oh, I love this girl.

^And even though this is a little overexposed, I love it anyway. It captures her.
Here, I'll add a slightly underexposed one to balance things out: 

. . .

When Maddy brought home all the paperwork and syllabi for the year, for some reason I recalled something Elizabeth Edwards once said. During her son Wade's early high school years she decided to read some of the books he was reading for class so they could discuss them and she could hear his burgeoning analysis and thoughts about life.* 

Brilliant. Now that the kids are older, I feel a bit separated from them in their studies. I'll proofread an essay here and there but mostly Lauren and now Maddy and Sam have sailed their own academic ships. So in light of that, I started thinking that I'll read along with Maddy on a few of her books this year. 

Here's the list for her sophomore English class: 

The Catcher in the Rye, Salinger
Song of Solomon, Morrison
The Turn of the Screw, James
A Separate Peace, Knowles
The Crucible, Miller
short stories, Shirley Jackson and others
Ender's Game, Card
The Great Gatsby, Fitzgerald
Walden, Thoreau

And films:
The Front (Woody Allen)
Persons of Interest (Alison MacLean)

Pretty great books, right? It'd be kind of like a low-key, mother daughter book group. That I...crash and wrestle into my own territory and attend uninvited? Is this a sweet & lovely idea or borderline helicopter parentish?  I can't trust my judgment on these things anymore. I swing wildly from benign neglect to hovering. I blame the emptying nest and the fleeting years. Savor is my mantra. Gather and savor.

*p.s. In a sad turn of the story, later, when Wade died in an accident before his senior year, she would read the books for that year out loud to him at his grave. Heartbreaking.