The Watchman

The Watchman

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Celebrate Your Special Day!!!

Today marks the mid point of our family's four week birthday marathon.

Two weeks ago, according to the calendar, I celebrated turning 29 for the 18th time.  I am beginning to wonder if having 17 years of experience at being 29 might be enough and so I am pondering trying 28 on again for size next year.  Of course when I turned 28 the first time I was very, very pregnant as shown in the picture below from Rick's commissioning ceremony.  This was even a month earlier than my birthday, and as you can see, I look ready to burst.

28 was also the year we moved across the country to live in Virginia while Rick completed his Officer Basic Course.  We met some amazing people there and our family had some wonderful experiences.  Overall, it was an exceptional year for our family and might be fun to revisit.

In two weeks, Lela will turn 11.  She is looking forward to this birthday not for the presents, but because the idea that she can flip the numbers in her age and still be the same age has her very excited.  I can remember when I turned 11 telling everyone that technically I was now a teenager, because the teenage years really needed to start with a 1 and not a 3.  My thoughts are let her enjoy it.  I am glad she can find happiness in the small things.  I will enjoy my last couple of years with my non-teenage daughter as well.

But today is not the beginning or the end of our birthday celebration month.  It is the middle and the day belongs to Jon.  This year was a milestone birthday for Jon since he turned 18.  Today also marks the day that he can legally drive non-family member teenagers in the car without an adult being present.  So in fact, I received a birthday present today with the gift of a pinch hitter in the carpool game.

So here is my boy then and now:

Whenever I have a birthday, I think of my Grandma Cook.  She was very funny about the anniversary of her birth and would not tell ANYONE her age.  One year, a census worker knocked on my aunt's door and asked my aunt if she knew the lady that lived next door.  My aunt replied that yes she did, that it was her mother-in-law.  The census worker then asked my aunt if she knew what year her mother-in-law had been born.  My aunt asked him why he had not acquired the necessary information from my grandma herself and the census worker answered that my grandma had refused to tell him.  My aunt without missing a beat then informed the census worker that if her mother-in-law refused to divulge the information, there was no way my aunt was going to tell him.

 Each year on my Grandma's birthday, the family would gather at her home for cake and ice-cream.  Presents were not expected, but you were expected to not utter the words, "Happy Birthday".  Instead you could say that you hoped she had a happy day.  In her later years, it became a joke between the two of us.  I don't remember when she stopped wishing me a Happy Birthday and instead would call and say she hoped I would have an especially happy day.  For some reason it seems like it happened about the time of the first anniversary of my turning 29.  On second thought, I am getting pretty good at being 29.

In the meantime, my wish is that whichever day marks the anniversary of your entrance into this great big world, you make it memorable.

1 comment:

  1. Love this, Ann. I wish everyone in your special four week celebration a very "happy day". Grandma stories are the best, aren't they? You have a wonderful family. I remember when Al turned 11 AND 18! IT all goes so quickly..Enjoy every minute of don't look a day over 28 :)