happy birthday cake happy birthday handy husband

Turning Nine and Twelve

We interrupt this blog’s regularly scheduled content for a special announcement.

As of today we have a 9-year-old and a 12-year-old in the house!

Whoop, whoop!

My kids were born 3 years and 1 day apart, so May is kind of like Christmas for us.

It’s magical and meaningful.
It’s exciting and full of anticipation.
It’s jam-packed with activities, presents and delicious food.

It’s also…expensive! Haha!

That’s what we get for having two May babies. For the record, they are totally worth it!

I’d really hate to admit (so I won’t!) what percentage of my thoughts revolve around whether the decisions Handy Husband and I have made as parents are going to turn our kids into well-rounded, decent human beings or if we should start saving for therapy.

Maybe both?!?

turning nine and twelve happy birthday cake with sprinkles


Jokes aside, for all the years my kids been on this planet, but this year in particular, I’ve been incredibly encouraged by the people who have come alongside our children and helped them in some demonstrable way.

A teacher who knew just the right words of encouragement.

A friend who stays in touch with online Minecraft playdates and hand-written letters.

A stranger who just last week, while standing in line at the ice cream stand, exemplified unexpected kindness and generosity by paying for the kids’ ice cream.

A police officer who demonstrates acts of service everyday at school.

A coach who volunteered his time simply because he wanted to give back to a sports program that had helped his kids so much.

A friend who has tended to my children’s boo-boos, or brushed their snarly hair, or listened to their stories, or taught them how to open a pocketknife.

A blog reader who took the time to send a compliment my daughter’s way.

A runner who gave my son a boost of confidence during his last race.

A friend who has traveled on the busiest weekend of the year to give the kids hugs.

And the countless other friends and family who demonstrate love to the kids on a regular basis.

In a world where there are too many examples of adults behaving badly, Handy Husband and I are indebted to the people in our children’s lives who are not perfect, but who show up and represent the better part of humanity on a regular basis. You might not know it, but you’ve given these kids an indelible leg up in this world.

So to each and every one of you who has directly or indirectly played a role in our children’s lives, I can’t thank you enough. Parenting is not a task we can or should endeavor to do alone, so thank you for coming alongside us and filling in the gaps as needed.

I am so happy to be celebrating my two kiddos today. I guarantee you my oldest has already started the countdown to being a teenager and my youngest has started the countdown to being in double digits.

As for me? I’m banning countdowns.

Kidding! Sort of.

I know I can’t stop the hands of time, but I can try to sear the moments of this coming year onto my soul.

As you know, I can’t end a post without a few more words…

Here’s our simple, but fun birthday tradition that we manage to pull off every year no matter where we are: home, hotel, grandma’s house. And we can do it because it’s SIMPLE, but impactful.

What do kids who just turned nine and twelve want for their birthday? Heck if I know, but we got our kids these. I hope they don’t pop right away.

My son asked for a piñata cake for his birthday. Goodness. I’ll make a note to tell you how it turned out. There’s a 50% chance it is an epic fail and a 50% chance that it’s passable.

If today was my birthday I’d make myself this cake (Handy Husband doesn’t bake). He does mix a mean drink though and I’d choose this or this. Hmm…there seems to be an underlying theme to my choices.

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