A birthday surprise

My birthday was over a week ago, but I’m just now finding time to sit down with my blog. Maybe I should have wished for a little better time management or priorities at night, then I’d have some more time to write. But I didn’t and I don’t. Some day…

I kind of feel like a birthday snob this year. I traveled (for work) leading up to my birthday and had multiple birthday desserts! If you’re eating out anyway, this is the way to go – free meals with special desserts!


My birthday was on a Friday and I’m in love with that kind of birthday. I used to love any kind of weekend birthday, but this year I found that a Friday one is even better. I took vacation and didn’t have to care for anyone else. ALL DAY. It was the best! I did kind of overbook myself, but it was all in the name of pampering so it was still a great day. I went back to sleep after the boys left, had lunch with my husband (ended up being free because the waitress was slow getting our drinks), got a hair cut, had a chiropractor adjustment, got my free birthday Starbucks (that I’ve gotten a few times), and got a mani/pedi with a friend.


Then said friend took me out of town for dinner. I thought we were meeting up with another friend. It turns out we were meeting up with many friends! We walked into one of my favorite restaurants, around the corner we went, and 10 beautiful faces smiled and said, “SURPRISE!” I’ve never had a surprise party and it was great! I was completely surprised and felt so special. As special as any birthday girl should! 🙂


Dinner was delicious and the company was great. I randomly see all these girls, but it’s not very often that we’re all together for something. It made me feel extra special that they all came out! The weather was supposed to get bad that night so we didn’t stick around for drinks after dinner, but that’s ok. After all, 31 isn’t exactly 21. 😉


For a year that I thought was just going to be another day, it turned out to be an unexpectedly wonderful day! I’m so thankful to have such wonderful friends in my life. Ones that make my day extra special. As a perpetual activity planner, it was pretty cool to have someone plan a surprise for me!



Three year check

On Monday, Maximus’ birthday, he had his 3-year check. I was pretty confident that shots weren’t required so I didn’t feel too bad about the appointment. He, on the other hand, didn’t want to go to the doctor. As we were walking in he said, “Quinten is going to see Doctor Jim?” Um, nope. You are. The nurse was pretty cool and had him hold the stethoscope while she listened to his heart. Then she told him he could put on a cool dinosaur gown or just lift up his shirt. He wanted no part in taking off his clothes so he opted to lift up his shirt. (I’m surprised at how early children learn modesty.) She even found him a Happy Birthday sticker since he did such a good job with the blood pressure cuff. He was ready to go after she left and said he didn’t want to see Doctor Jim. Being the polite little boy that he is, he still said hello to Doctor Jim when he walked in. He was a little quiet and whiny, but he still said it. 🙂 I love that he’s still so impressionable, even if he doesn’t want to do something.

He was a little leery about getting on the table but realized that Doctor Jim wasn’t going to hurt him. He did a great job of listening and following directions. He didn’t like the anatomy check and gave Doctor Jim quite the side-eye and started to wiggle around a lot. (That modesty thing again. Regardless of how many times a day I say, “please stop touching your …”)

Doctor Jim told him to stand and mimic him and touch his toes. It was the first time I saw him follow directions like that. He looked like such a big kid! That was one of those sad mommy moments when you realize your kid really is three.

We love going to Doctor Jim because he offers the nerdy details that Bryan yearns for and also gets a kick out of talking to Maximus. They chatted about Maximus’ birthday party and his white cake. And when we finally told Maximus he could leave, he headed out the door almost before I could tell him to say good-bye. He stopped, backtracked a little, threw up his hand in a wave, and said, “Bye Doctor Jim!” And then we took him downstairs to have his blood drawn…

Yes, we did. We opted to just get it over with even if it was his birthday. Luckily, he didn’t remember the place. I guess that means his two-year draw wasn’t traumatic. I took him back and he talked to the ladies about the cartoons on the wall and the color of their shirts. One lady explained what she was going to do and that it was going to pinch but not hurt like a shot because there was no medicine. Meanwhile I was wondering why the heck she was explaining any of this to him! I’m not sure that he knows what a shot is. I’m sure he knows to get nervous when he sees a needle, but I don’t know that he knows the name of it. Maybe he seemed older than three or maybe they’ve found it’s helpful to explain what is about to happen. Either way, he watched her the whole time! I couldn’t even watch, but I couldn’t get him to look up at me either. His lips started to quiver and his face got red. I thought tears were going to spill out, but then it was over. As soon as he sat up he said, “mommy, why that girl put a hole in my arm?” Then, obviously, he spent the next 45 minutes walking around like his arm was broke and he couldn’t move it. 🙂

Three seems to be a pretty cool age. It’s still full of raw emotion, but it’s also full of so much learn. He asks why at least 5,329 times a day. So much that my eyes go cross-eyed and I don’t think I can possibly come up with one more reason why. Yet, I do. I try to turn it into a teaching experience, but I almost always fail at that. “Maximus, why do you think I’m putting away the groceries?” “Why mommy?” ::palm to face::

Three year stats:

  • Height: 3′ 3/4″ (25.98%)
  • Weight: 29 lbs 9.6 oz (27.58%)
  • BMI: 15.41 kg (29.19%)
Helping make his birthday cake

Helping make his birthday cake

The Perfect Thirties?

Is that even a thing? Well, it’s my birthday and I’ll make it a thing if I want to!

I don’t have profound words about what 30 means to me. I didn’t put together a bucket list of 30 things to do before I turned 30. When I was little, 30 was old. When I was 12, I couldn’t ever imagine being as old as my brother. He was 23 and it looked like the perfect age. When I was 18, life ended at 25. When I turned 21, I was old enough to be a real adult and young enough to be awesome. When I was 25, life was over and I never wanted to age again. Then, I ignored the new numbers each year. I don’t even remember using the number 29. Probably because of  the broken foot, I spent it like this. Today, I start using a new, big number. THIRTY. 30. Whew!

In many ways I feel like my life is just beginning. That’s silly because I’ve been working for seven years and married for five. My adult life began long ago. I guess that means that children have made me feel like we’re really living life. It is completing me. I can’t imagine not having them. We’re constantly braving waters that we’ve never experienced before, but that’s ok. I won’t pretend to be an expert at parenting, but I am an expert at my children. They may throw curveballs that are hard to hit, but I know their hearts and souls. They are made from a piece of me and a piece of my husband. They are us. And they make my heart and home complete.

I may not have a long list of things to accomplish, but that doesn’t mean my life isn’t perfect. Thirty is a big number, Maximus doesn’t even know it exists yet, but I’m doing just fine. I’d like to think my body is still somewhere in my 20s, my energy in my teens, and my heart in the hands of my boys. Yup, the 30s are going to be perfect.

Happy 2nd birthday, Maximus!

We celebrated Maximus’ 2nd birthday today. We started by sleeping in, then had waffles, and went on a walk. All things each of us enjoy!

Nap time was spent preparing food, blowing up balloons, and building a workbench.

Although Maximus wanted to go bye-bye, he stuck around long enough to see that more people were coming over and he wasn’t going anywhere with grandma and grandpa. (One time! Once he left our house with them while we were still home.) He quickly got over the shyness and ran around the living room with the big boys chasing balloons. He kept a close eye on my baby niece and enjoyed sharing the dinner table with her. He got lots of great toys that he’ll be enjoying for months to come!