Birthday celebration

I grew up in a home where birthdays were a BIG deal. We always got to pick where we wanted to eat, what kind of cake we wanted (my all-time favorite was an ice cream cake that looked like an Easter basket - my birthday was on Easter that year), and we were given several presents to open.

My experience and my husband's were a bit different. Birthdays just weren't that big of a deal in his family. And that's not a problem for me...now. I'll be honest, it's taken a little getting used to. What I have definitely seen since we've gotten married is the disgusting selfishness that is deeply rooted in my heart. The problem with making big deals out of birthdays is sometimes you can let it go to your head, and then you come to expect that everyone should make a huge deal out of the fact that you were born. Don't get me wrong, I am all for celebrating another person's life and the fact that God created them. My personal problem (which I didn't recognize until the past couple of years) is that I felt as though the world should revolve around me on my birthday. As a believer, the world should NEVER revolve around me!

So, I had an idea a few days before Riley's 3rd birthday in July. I decided that a new tradition in our family should be to do something for someone else on each of our birthdays. Because I didn't think of this until right before Riley's birthday, we didn't go all out in planning what we were going to do. But, he did help me write and send a card to a lady in our church who was going through a difficult time. The plan for future years is to think far enough in advance to plan something really special we can do for someone else.

Now to the point of this post...Daniel's 32nd birthday! I'm so thankful that his birthday was on a Saturday this year. He had one short meeting planned, but other than that, his day was completely clear to just rest - which is what he needed and wanted! I didn't even bring up the subject of him doing something for someone else on his birthday because honestly, as a pastor, he does stuff for other people all. the. time. He needed a day where he could just be.

The sweet people across the street in the housing complex he visits most every Friday gave him a little surprise lunch the day before his birthday. I was told of it ahead of time, so the kids and I were able to help celebrate.

Riley helping daddy blow out the candles

Ms. Darlene - the sweet lady who planned it all AND made all of the food.

Riley was working so hard to finish up his carrots so he could have a piece of cake!

Ella's favorite part of birthdays are the balloons!

And then it was time to help daddy open presents

Me and my girl

As I said earlier, the actual day of his birth, Daniel didn't do a whole lot. He slept in until about 10 (I'm pretty sure my body would go into some type of shock if I tried to do that at this point in my life...one day it will happen again!), so while he was sleeping, the kids worked on a card and I baked him a cheesecake - the only thing he requested.

I had never made a homemade cheesecake before, but it really wasn't hard and it tasted amazing! Daniel said, "It if wasn't hard, there's really nothing stopping you from making one of these again real soon!" Ok, honey, I get the hint! :)

The rest of the day consisted of french toast for lunch (per Daniel's request), watching part of The Hunger Games (thanks to Netflix), leftovers for dinner (I asked him what he wanted for dinner and he said leftovers!), and a nice family walk.

**Side note: As we were getting ready to leave for our walk, I remembered I hadn't yet given Daniel the one small gift I'd gotten. His big gift (combined with Father's Day) was a new electric drill/screwdriver set, but Kohl's had some shirts on sale I thought he'd like. So, I said to Riley, "Oh, we need to give Daddy his present!" Riley said, "What present?" I said, "The shirt I got him." This conversation took place while Daniel was in the garage doing something. When Daniel came back in Riley ran to him and said, "Daddy, you need to open the present from Mama. It's a new shirt." And that's what I get for telling the 3 y.o. what his daddy's present was! :)

Riley insisted on not riding in the stroller and walking the whole way. Mr. 3-year-old certainly doesn't withhold his opinion these days!

Our "typical" route is to walk to the school and back. When we got there, Daniel said we should let Riley go out and run on the football field. Riley LOVES football, and he loves to pretend like he's playing. He got so excited when he realized we were going down onto the field. I bet he ran up and down the whole thing 3 or 4 times.

I know it's blurry, but I thought this picture was kind of neat.

Sister and I stood on the sidelines and watched until she decided she'd had enough and it was time to go home! I'm pretty sure the whole neighborhood around us could hear her expressing her opinion.

I'm thankful for a husband who doesn't think the world should revolve around him - on his birthday or any other day. The Lord is constantly using him to teach me! I'm also thankful for quiet, restful days that always come right when we need them.

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