Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Birthday Season

We are nearing the end of birthday season in our house. We have all six birthdays between February 10th and April 25th with four of them in March. It's hard to believe my oldest is fifteen, but I think even harder to believe that my youngest if nearly five. As I type, she is sitting next to me writing letters on a piece of paper and adding 2 + 1. Oh, my, where did the time go?

James turned 15 on February 10th, and we celebrated by he and I jumping in a car and driving to Bartlesville. It was a great time on the road. Pretty much once we got to Bartlesville I didn't see him, but the time in the car was fabulous! He's such a great kid. He's a teenager and drives us crazy occasionally, but when I really think about it and think of myself at that age, I am so proud of him. He checks his brain from time to time, particularly when he is interacting with his siblings, but most of the time he is really on top of things. I am most proud of his walk with Jesus. When I was 15, I was boy crazy and acting stupid, making bad choices a lot of the time. He's hanging out with his friends, usually at our house. I'm sure he thinks girls are cute, but he's not over eager to date, enjoying his guy time! He's usually up early reading his Bible, and he likes to sit and hear his dad's sermons on Sunday morning. When he was little, we called him our "little evangelist". This hasn't changed . . . he has some pretty crazy friends who he loves to have over, and they seem to like to be here because they keep on returning. Most of them have had little to no exposure to Jesus. James is ready and willing to share the Truth with them! It's great!

Jason turned 12 on March 31st. He had four friends over to spend the night. He is a great friend to others, such an encourager. He does not study Scripture like his brother, but he has a heart of gold, and his actions truly display the love of Jesus. This is something we hear about him from others frequently. You can read an earlier post of mine about what his teacher said about him earlier this year, one of the greatest compliments I have received on one of my children. He is a friend to the friendless and the people who no one else will befriend. I know it's not always easy to be friends with some of the people he is friends with, but he does it anyway. He loves the Lord and grows daily to be more like Jesus.

David turned 7 on March 2nd. He actually had a birthday party this year, although not until March 13th. He had several friends over and they had a big Wii tournament on the big screen in the house. None of us really like cake, so everyone had giant chocolate chip cookies. David's were shaped and decorated like a bowling pin, a baseball, and a putting green! It was fun! I baked, and Brent decorated! David is asking so many questions about Jesus. Easter was a precious time with him this year as he was able to better comprehend Jesus's death and resurrection and what that means for him personally. He has asked to be baptized. We still are not certain he fully grasps it, so we are waiting and having almost daily conversations with him.

Sarah will be five in a couple weeks. She will have her first birthday party ever. She wants a princess tea party, but recently she told us she wanted to invite prince's also. We will see. I would rather keep it small. She has been planning every little detail, including making up her own game that I don't think I can possibly re-explain. Not sure how we are going to handle that yet! She is really into learning and will do great in kindergarten next year. She loves preschool, loves learning her letters, loves adding, and is excellent at following instructions and making sure everyone around her follows them also. She has been talking way too much lately, so that could pose to be a problem for her in the classroom. We will see! Again, I reflect on my own life, and I am sorry to my parents if they happen to read this. I love you! But the thing I remember about turning five was that it was my first birthday without my parents being together. It was hard. I'm so grateful that Sarah will remember five differently.

In the mix of all the kids' birthdays, Brent and I often don't do much to celebrate. Usually we try to get out by ourselves for dinner or something. This year I decided to try to have some friends over to celebrate with Brent. His birthday was Saturday, so I emailed a few of his close friends here and down in the Thousand Oaks area. Not everyone could be here Saturday, so we had two birthday dinners. Saturday we had steak and potatoes, and I made my first cheesecake ever, and it actually was okay. I don't really care too much for cheesecake, but Brent loves it. Scott and Amberly were here for dinner with us. Then on Sunday we had chicken and linguine with a white sauce and a chocolate chip dessert. His friend, Mike, came up from Thousand Oaks, and our friends Eric and Shannon came over also. It was nice.

Then for my birthday, we went to BJs with our small group and had dinner and my favorite, a pizookie! We laughed and enjoyed each other's company. And Brent went out shopping for an orange tree for me. He wasn't actually able to get it. They didn't have the size in that he wanted, but soon I will have an orange tree. I wanted a house with one when we moved here, but that didn't happen, so I have been asking for one since. I think it might be one of my favorite presents of all time! We just have to get it and get it planted!!!

I look at my life, at my family, at our friends . . . We are truly blessed and I am so thankful!!! It's not always easy, but it sure is incredible!!! I can add to that in another post when I share about Easter Sunday, which was such an amazing treat! Our birthdays pale in comparison to what we have to celebrate on Easter, what we need to be celebrating each day!