Friday, March 6, 2009

A Birthday Carol

Today my youngest son, Jack, turns two years old. Richard and I don't know if we should be excited or nervous. While two years old means Jack will finally talk in full sentences and come closer to being potty trained, two also means the terrible twos. Frankly, I can't imagine Jack any more terrible (and cute) than he already is. Already, he's hurling limes across the living room, scaling bookshelves, and flooding the kitchen with water from the kitchen sink.... Who only knows what terrible twos will bring.

We'll steal a page from Charles Dickens, "A Christmas Carol," in celebration of Jack's Birthday past, present, and future.

Birthdays Past: I have a friend from college whose name is Wayne Slocum. I can't quite remember how we met, but I'm pretty sure it wasn't in class. I think Wayne was an Aeronautical Engineering major and I was a History/English major. We definitely weren't hanging out in the same classroom buildings. Wayne took me on one of the most creative dates I have ever been on. He packed two spoons and two pints of ice cream in his beaten up Honda, so we could drive to the airport and watch planes land. Today, Wayne is living happily ever after in San Diego, California with his adventurous and beautiful wife, Jennifer. He, like my husband, is a great guy - the kind of guy we want our sons to grow up and be. It just so happens Wayne's birthday is also March 6 (though for the longest time I thought it was the 4, 5, 7, and 8th). Last year I made the decision to use Jack's birthday as an my annual opportunity to check in with Wayne and Jennifer. How about you? Who's birthday can you use to connect with someone from the past? By the way, I used the fun picture postcards to send this picture to Wayne with a short birthday message.

Birthday Present: I could use this as a chance to tell you what present Jack is getting. Boring. Or, about the adorable Elmo doll my mother sent him from New York. Just did. Instead, I will use Birthday Present to give you a sneak peek at Saturday's birthday party. For those who were around last year, you might have heard me tell you my vision for a Dog Party, based on the children's book, "Go Dog Go." In the book, dogs gather at a tree and climb a ladder to the top. Past the branches and on the tree top is a Dog Party. Big dogs, little dogs, black dogs, and white dogs. Each dog is wearing a dog party hat, eating food, and playing games. Tomorrow we are hosting our own small Dog Party. We'll make dog party hats, read the book, eat lunch out of dog bowls, dig for bones, and everyone will leave with a Doggie Bag. Pictures to follow next week.

Birthday Future: If you were around last year then you also know that during Jack's birthday party I took Polaroid pictures of each guest and asked them to make a prediction about Jack over the course of the year. Last night I looked at the predictions for the first time in a year. They were fun to read. Here are a few: "We will be waiting to see you climb the jungle gym." (True. He was climbing the jungle gym at 13 months old). "Jack will learn how to open doors and catch and throw a ball." (Yes on the doors. No on the catching and throwing)."I predict one trip to the emergency room... nothing serious." (False. Thankfully). "Your first word will be 'ball." (False. His first word was "car" and when he says it, it sounded like a crow "cawing."). "Jack will weigh 32 pounds." (False. He's weighing in at a stealth 28 pounds).

Today is Friday. How about telling us how you like to celebrate birthdays. Or... make a prediction to be opened next year at this time. None of the above, but have a topic of your own? Share that.

As for me, I'm off to work and then to do some birthday party prep.

Signing off until tomorrow...


Anonymous said...

We start with the birth story the night before, a tradition from when I was a kid and would pester my mom. You choose breakfast and dinner. I try special notes in lunch box. Birthday #1 is a big, home affair. Birthdays 2-4 small family type things. Once in school it grows a bit until you are 10, then smaller more manageable.

William "the crazy" Struble said...

Happy Birthday Jack!
As a fellow 2 yr old (for a another couple of months) 2 is GREAT! No more diapers, being able to tease and annoy Matthew (your brother Matthew too) and a trip to the ER. Too bad I can't come to your party. I love Go Dog Go. I have it memorized. Instead, I'll have some cake for you
All the best on your birthday.
PS - your present got mailed today - mom's been a little behind.
And, good luck Beeny family with a 2 year old in the house.

Cruise Director said...

Claudia- I love how your themes all come together! I try to do it but never seem to be able to execute. I think I try to get too elaborate and become overwelmed...

Last year, the shark party didn't happen but I have a large paper mache shark head, a huge fin and lots of fish, sharks and other decorations. A lot that still needs to be painted. It is on the agenda for this summer but not as a brithday party just a party. We'll see!

Drew's birthday is on Halloween and JB's Birthday is on Thanksgiving this year. Halloween is on a Saturday this year. It's just a busy time of year and for the past couple we haven't had parties. I need to get it together though. :)

Cruise Director said...

P.S. What about Jack and the knives!! I swear Jack is going to be a chef as much as he likes to be in the kitchen and the way he's always pulling stuff out of the drawers.

Happy Birthday, Jack!

eknoxuk said...

I always like to draw out my birthday:) My husband teases me for this, but I use every excuse to call things a birthday celebration for like a week! I did this a lot more when I was single and still going out, but I still like to get all I can out of it!

Chaotic said...

My Bday is the end of May (Memorial Day) so I hate to travel in the weekend holiday traffic... usually I take a day off mid week and hed to the coast to sit on the beach & read a book :-)

Tera said...

Happy birthday, Jack. He's a "6" just like me, Treye & Julie :) It's a good day.

As I've moved away from home, my birthday isn't really anything special. Treye will either cook for me or take me out. I try to get home around my birthday to celebrate with my parents. We usually have grilled that's been my fav since we live in an apartment and can't grill :)

Have a great weekend everyone...I'm off to the gym!

Devil Dog said...

My birthday happens to fall around the same time as my favorite art fair in Louisville (St. James), in early October. Louisville is always beautiful. The air is crisp, the leaves are turning colors, and people are excited for fall. Because at Bellarmine, you are permitted to take off your birthday, Richard would also take off and we'd spend the morning wandering the fair. A couple of years ago we saw a piece of art we loved and Richard went back and bought it for me as a gift. Now it hangs above our fire place mantle.

Fond, fond memories.

heather said...

I've never been huge on my family it was always a day to spend with your family, especially Grandparents.
I remember heading to my Grandparents house each year for dinner, cake and ice cream.

Even when I was an adult I headed home to have cake and ice cream with my Grandma. My 24th birthday was the last I got to spend with her and I took a slice of cake to the hospital to eat with her.

So for me birthdays are always a reminder of the awesome memories I got to make with my Grandma.

Bean Counter said...

Birthdays for me were always shared with my older brother. His birthday is the 11th of the month and mine is the 23rd so our "parties" were always together.

We always got to go out to eat to wherever restaurant we wanted on the actual date of our birthday (my brothers still do since they live at home). Now, my parents send me money for me and a friend to go out to dinner on my birthday. Then, we always went to our grandparent's house to celebrate with the whole family sometime in between our two birthdays. The busier we get the harder it is for all of them to get down to my grandparent's house for birthday dinners, but I know they still try.

Birthdays for me were never a huge deal until I got to college. Now I enjoy taking that day to celebrate myself and to celebrate all the great things about my life! It's nice to have that annual celebration of self- especially because in September the leaves are usually changing colors and it's getting cooler outside.

Bean Counter said...

PS. Happy 2nd Birthday, Jack Jack! Katie K was slacking off so your gift will be a little late!

Devil Dog said...

Katie... oooohhhh, but your gift won't be late. A treat from you arrived in the mail today! We will open it at dinner tonight - hopefully in time for baths and a pair of fresh new pajamas?!?!?!?

Thank you for your thoughtfulness.

eknoxuk said...

I was just watching the NBC news and they started talking about RAK!! Next week they're going to air special stories-throughout the week I believe- on Random Acts of Kindness! Someone should write in!

b.k.root said...

Just wanted to give everyone a heads up that I'll be out of town all week next week, on a Habitat for Humanity trip... I'll see ya'll in a week!