Happy Birthday Buddy…

Dear Bang,

Since the day you were born, you’ve been quite a character. Full of personality. Full of quirks that made you unique. Today, exactly seven years later, that still holds true. You have a heart as big as the world and a temper to match. You can be as prickly as porcupine but also as snuggly as puppy. You have the temper of bull but also the kindness of Mother Theresa herself. You can be saucy, little brat, but also the most loving child a parent could ask for. You make your parents feel like we’ve done this parenting thing perfectly, but also make us feel like complete failures.

You’re kindness overshadows all. To this day, we still don’t know why you decided you wanted to sing in the church choir. Our only guess is that you absolutely adore the little, “old” ladies. They look forward to Sunday mornings as much as you do. I remember one morning when I told you to go up and get dressed and you growled at me like a rabid rhino ready to charge at me because you didn’t want to go to school. I reminded you we were going to church and you said “Oh” and happily got dressed. Today, not only did the church choir sing you happy birthday, but the whole congregation sang. I don’t know too many seven year olds who have happy birthday sung to them by the whole church. You’ve unknowingly made many people happy.

You hold doors for people just because you want to show them a bit of kindness. You could be sitting with your parents at Tim Hortons, but you’d rather stand at the door and open it when people enter or leave. You do it out of kindness. One day, someone gave you a tip, their loose change from their most recent purchase. It couldn’t have been more than a quarter. They might as well have given you a million bucks. Sometimes they would give you their free donut or free coffee they had just won from Roll Up the Rim to Win cups. Still, you hold doors because you want to, not because you are looking for tips. Even after the kindness of the lady who gave you ten dollars because she was traveling and had an armful of luggage.

At the grocery store you skip ahead in line so you can help bag the groceries of the person in front of us. At first I was afraid they would think you were stealing their food. Those fear were dashed quickly, when again, you discovered you could get tipped for helping. Everyone pays you with a thank you. The special ones give you a tip. Like the doors, you don’t do for the money. But it sure is nice.

You save money like Scrooge McDuck. When given ten dollars to spend at Toys R Us, your brother couldn’t get their fast enough. When we finally arrived, you asked, “Do I have to spend it? Can I save it?” don’t know too many kids you can take to a toy store and they don’t want to buy anything. You’ve got your eyes set on a puppy. So it’s only a matter of time now, buddy.

You frustrate us with your sauciness. You amaze us with your constant questions. You exhaust us with your desire to always to be moving. Come the end of the day, you make us feel loved and make us wonder why we ever thought we were “parenting” you wrong. Come morning, though, we’ll wonder all anew.

Love ya buddy,

Mom and Dad

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Happy Birthday DW!

6:15am this morning…
Bang (5 years old): Moooooom (hollered from bed)
Mom: Yeah, buddy?
Bang: Is it your birthday?
Mom: Yeah.
Bang: Well, then, lets go!
Mom: Go where?
Bang: Make your cake and Walmart!

I’ve known her for 14 years. That’s 5,110 days.That’s 5,110 days of laughing so hard we fart and laughing even harder. That’s 5,110 days of learning to work as a team, which mostly means that if we do it her way we’ll get it right the first time. That’s 5,110 days creating memories we’ll laugh at until we’re the age we can’t remember why we’re laughing.

That’s almost a whole mile worth of days. And not a day goes by that I’m not thankful for her. She’s kept me out of more trouble than one person should be responsible for. My mom is relieved to not be the one responsible for me anymore. DW exercises daily. She does more eye rolls by 8 am than a 9 year old “pre-teen” will do all day. 

She is beautiful, which is why I married her.

She is brilliant, which is why I married her.

She is hilarious, which is why I married her. 

She has big…. uh… calves. They’re are crazy strong, which is why I married her. She was once told in a gas station by a big, black man who was built like a freight train, “Damn, girl. You got some fine legs. I wouldn’t trade those legs for Cindy Crawford’s legs!”

She’s the mother of my children and the woman in my dreams. As a true Jedi, she’s strong with the force. Thankfully, she reminds me more of slave Leia than Yoda. 

Today is her birthday. Today’s the day she turns the big four-oh. 

That’s 40. That’s 14,600 days. Here’s to another 365 day journey around the sun!

,

Eight, 8, VIII (and 238)

happy-birthdayEight years ago our first born came into the world. It wasn’t exactly a grand entrance. It was a forty hour labor and he was born at 3:27 in the morning. I wrote about it my “With An Open Heart” post about his heart surgery when he was five days old.

Flash forward eight years and you would never know he went through what he went through. He only needs to see his cardiologist once every two years. Whenever he goes to a new doctor they’re amazed when they listen to his heart. “He’s got quite a heart murmur,” they tell us as if we didn’t know. His heartbeat sounds more like the swishing of a washing machine than the clear boom boom we’re used to hearing.

He’s also full of business. He enjoys arguing. Really enjoys sometimes. Especially if it’s bedtime and it’s still light outside. Anyway, he growing physically (an inch in the last 3 months) and mentally (he’s reading above grade level). Though he is smart, I swear he is, he still does dumb stuff. I’m fairly confident “the do stupid stuff” gene is on the Y chromosome.

So now he’s going into third grade (or as they say here in Canada, grade three). He’ll be in a new part of his school (or at least new to him) which is just down the hall from the pre-school room his brother will be in.

Today will be celebrated by cleaning up Legos. Or, Crash will be cleaning up Legos while his mother and I clean the rest of the house. We’ll be visiting our park and splash pad later for Family Fun activities. Then we’ll be home to decorate and have a pizza party with a bunch of Crash’s friends. This will be followed by ice cream cake and presents.

Here’s to another 584 billion mile journey around the sun. Here’s to whatever 8 brings us. Here’s another to protecting our sanity.

Oh and …

4th-of-july