I love this kid so much! I love teenagers. They are a challenge at times but I do enjoy watching them become their own person. Mandi is one of those teenagers that is easy to like. I have enjoyed these teen years with her so far! She has started forming her own style and ideas on important topics. She pushes herself in ways that constantly amaze me. It's hard to be her age and at times as I observe her life I am reminded of why it's so difficult to be 15. She is determined to achieve her goals in basketball. We are at a highly competitive high school and she comes from a small junior high school. She must out work a lot of girls to get a place on the team.

Mandi and Jessi remain super tight but they also compete with one another. In my opinion that puts a lot of stress on their relationship. I am not sure what the solution is since they are naturally attracted to the same activities. It's hard as a mom to maneuver through the emotions of two teenage girls dealing with 15 year old concerns. I don't feel like I do the best job all the time and many nights I go to sleep feeling like I failed. I have this overwhelming need to want to be the best mom I can for her and all the kids and yet I know I come up short many times. Is that part of why raising teenagers is so difficult? I am struggling with knowing that the voices of her peers are becoming louder in her head and that frightens me a bit. I wish I could keep her in a little bubble, remind her that she is wonderfully made and give her encouragement to be exactly who God made her to be. But I also remember the struggle all to well of being 15. She can't live in my bubble for life, she has to find many things in life out for herself in order to develop her own convictions and values. I pray for the right friends in her life. I pray that I will not be frightened by it all. I am surprised by some of my feelings.

Mandi just made the high school varsity basketball team as a Sophomore!  After three hard days of tryouts she ended up making it!  Sure she is having trouble walking now due to the workouts but she was able to do it! I am so proud of her hard work and effort! She is one of the most determined 15 year olds around! She has worked so hard and I am so happy for her!! 

Keep up the GOOD work Mandi and keep working your hardest! God has many wonderful things in store for your life! Be strong my sweet darling teenager!!