“I want to grow up and write, but I don’t like people reading my work.”

Today is the Little Sister’s birthday!!!

She turns 18.

Let me tell you more about her –

Tara’s mom, Kathy, was the barista at my local coffee shop. I would pop in on Saturday’s and chat with her for a little bit and when my brother passed away, the coffee shop was my escape for a couple hours every day. Kathy asked if I had vacation or was between jobs, but then I told her my brother passed away and then I was invited to join the Friday Night Dinners that would happen at the coffee shop. I met Tara, then 15, and we started chatting and I met her friends… I then got sucked into some new friendships and listening to Tara talk to me about her teenage life.

Over time as the conversations increased and getting deeper, some made jokes about us being sisters. There’s been times where she’s been mistaken as my little sister, her mom being my mom (which didn’t go over well, haha!), and some people realizing that I’d go to bat for her whenever needed.

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In the weeks leading up to her birthday I’d ask if she’s excited or what she’s looking forward to doing… there was more excite for events that were planned, not so much excitement on the fact she’ll be 18.

Made me realize that turning 18 isn’t what it used to be. I can understand that it’s not looked at as an age of freedom, but more like ‘great, now how to do I do these adult things?’. It baffles me how times have changed!

We celebrated by visiting Magic Gardens, which she was excited to go to once I explained it’s an actual place and not just murals around South Philly.

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Then we ventured over to the new Museum of the American Revolution for some air conditioning. This museum is one of the nicest museums I’ve ever been to. I had no idea the museum would be so big and so thorough, because from the outside it doesn’t look THAT big.

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After that we walked around, trying to track down a shop that Tara wanted to check out from Bastille Day when we went to Old City for dinner. Turns out, she couldn’t remember where it was and we walked the same circle 3 times until she found the shop and it closed just 10 minutes before we found it. Ugh. Then we enjoyed dinner at The Continental before heading over to Delaware River Waterfront’s Summerfest for some ‘putput’. Then we enjoyed a stroll along the river front to Spruce Street Harbor Park to wind down.

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It was a fun day and while we were talking about how much we accomplished, Tara said, “today was great, except for my minor meltdown. This city is too big to do what I want in a day.” “Well kid, we only covered, like, 2.5 neighborhoods and cities are big because they’re exciting and fun!”

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She’s definitely a small town girl and handles on so much city life and stimulation in small doses.

Tara is on her way to being an adult and changing the world! She wants to be a writer, but doesn’t like people reading her work… so, we’re going to work on that 🙂

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