happy birthday j!


{the hands i love to hold}

Dear J,

You are changing and growing right before our eyes, and it is the most amazing thing to witness. You are extremely inquisitive and observant. You like to take your time doing things, from eating to taking walks. When we take a walk you like to look at everything around you. You are a constant reminder to me to slow down and take in the beauty of the little things. I marvel at how you can hear a bird singing from far away and will make me listen every time. You love to sit in the backyard watching the turtles in the pond while watching spiders make their webs, or butterflies flying around. I find it very appropriate that your birthday is also earth day!


You love animals, but in our household I guess this is a given. You’re kind of forced into the situation with four dogs, a cat, two turtles, and several fish. Geez, you will probably be a zookeeper or something. Just the other day you started to get jealous of Bruno, however, when he sat on my lap. You told Bruno, “My mommy!” and pushed him off.


You have the sweetest singing voice. You are extremely musical. Your current favorite song is “Barbara Ann” (you like the “Ba, ba, ba” part and hear it on daddy’s oldies cd), but you’ve just learned “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star” and can sing most of it all the way through. For some reason you love the opening song from the television show “Mad Men”. You don’t watch the show with us (not quite something for your age!), but we play the song from the dvr and rewind it a few times so you can hear the drums. You love to also sing the song we made up for Bruno. Your voice makes me smile.


You tell funny, funny stories. I can’t always understand everything you’re saying, but you are very expressive with your hands. You currently tell a long story about something at school and then say (like someone else is saying it), “Helen! Helen!”. Miss Helen is one of your teachers at school. You just this week starting saying her name and Miss Lisa’s name.

You are a boy who loves to eat! You love meatballs and meatloaf especially, and love to yell out “meatball!” What’s amazing to us is that you ask to taste a lot of different foods. I have never seen a child your age ask to taste foods like you do. And when you taste things you hold it in your mouth and let it sit on your tongue for awhile to get the full taste. You recently discovered candy, which doesn’t always have such a great effect on you, so it’s on very rare occasions that you get it!

Developmentally, you have far surpassed our expectations of a little boy your age. You run and climb like crazy, and can kick a ball like you’re a pro. You love to shoot baskets and throw your football around. You can actually sit and watch a basketball or football game for, honestly, more time than most people I know can. You are  definitely an athlete. A dream come true for a football coaching father, huh?


I just love and adore you so much, and can’t believe how much you have bettered our lives. You bring us joy each and every single day, and your daddy and I have no idea how we ever got along without your sweet smile! We are extremely proud of you. Despite all you’ve been through, you love and trust us now with every ounce of your being. We can already see all the qualities that show who you’re going to grow up to be: a kind-hearted, sweet, and loving man. You love the simple things in life and remind us to do the same, and we thank God for you every day. We love you forever.


With love,

Your mommy



**One of my student’s parents told me that every year on her children’s birthdays she wrote down their favorites, since these little things are forgotten so easily. I love this idea!**

j’s favorites…
t.v. show: lazy town
song: “Barbara Ann”
pasttime: visits to the park, swings
friends: daesha, gavin, payton, luke, carson and frankie
move: his “battle stance”-he puts his legs apart and bends the front knee, sort of like the warrior pose in yoga
favorite thing in school: toys, dancing and singing, planting seeds
chores he does at home: helps me vacuum and unload the dishwasher
most commonly used word(s): thank you and no
food: meatballs and meatloaf, muffins
drink: white grape juice
animal: cats
things he did this year: rode a horse, went to his first museum, went to disneyland, visited Arizona

most commonly said by j:
a cuddle daddy?
love you mommy!
thank you mommy.

Some of my favorite things about J:


J’s been saying “Good” when we ask him, “How are you?” for a long time, but I still love to hear it. His little voice is so cute when he says it.

J is a cuddler. He recently learned the world “cuddle” and uses it all. the. time.  He’ll say “A-cuddle, mommy?” and then when we cuddle, he’ll ask Andrew “A-cuddle, daddy?”, then will ask one of the dogs to join in on the cuddle. Too cute.


I love how polite J is. He says “please” and “thank you” regularly. The cutest thing is when he says “Bless you” when someone sneezes, even the dogs!

I love how sometimes when he hugs me he’ll pat me on the back. It’s so comforting to me. He gives the best and biggest hugs to everyone.


I love how much J loves his family. He loves spending time with his cousins, Frankie and Carson, and often asks for them. I hope and pray to be able to watch them grow and change together.

I love how happy and excited J gets when we pick him up from daycare. Sometimes he screams and jumps up and down and it makes me so happy that he has had such a fun day, but knows that there’s more fun to be had with mom and dad.

I love how most of the time J wakes up happy and smiling. Recently, he isn’t too fond of waking up for school so early, but when he sleeps in until 7 a.m. or so he is one happy camper.


I love watching J play on his jungle gym in the backyard. I will never forget the look of surprise when he walked out to see it. He was amazed that this big “toy” was actually all his. The very next morning after Andrew set it up the first thing he did after waking up was to look outside to see if it was still there. It wasn’t a dream!



{gotta love craigslist}



Filed under adoption, celebrations, family, foster care

2 responses to “happy birthday j!

  1. Cant wait to hear about the party you threw! What a great idea of the favorites list…hmmm I might have to copy this 🙂

  2. Miranda

    so cute and heartwarming. ❤

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