Best Gift EVER

So I had a great birthday weekend. It was rich with family and good times outside.

Soaking up the sun.
Watching the boys play, play, play.

Just how I like it. I thought I would share with you a little collection of birthday memories for me. And of course, I have saved the best for last as I was, without a doubt, given the best birthday gift ever this year.

Dad and the boys taking a wagon ride at Nana and Papaw's house.

The boys hotrod'n there too!

After church on Sunday, Mollye bear and all of my gang showed up for some more fun! Check her out. She has is now sitting up!

We then headed off to our nearby paradise for a picnic lunch and play.

Kenny and Casey walking the beach.

Chuckin' rocks...

Finding just the right rock for skipping...

Pa and Eli taking it all in.

Kenny, Casey face, and me attempting a pic on our own...

Then it was back to the house for cake!

Without a doubt, my guest of honor was present. My Gramma was in from Maryland to celebrate my brithday with me. I was so happy to have her here. I was her first grandchild. I kinda like being her #1.

So, are you ready?

Ready to see the best gift ever?

Here goes.

Upon headng to the park, Eli was fumbling through his backpack talking with us about what he learned at church. He was searching to show me his craft of the day.

Eli: "Mom, God made people. I learned that today. He made soil plants and animals last week and grass too. This week He made people. God gave families to people. He wants us to live with our families and love them. [Continues shuffling through his backpack.]"

[Papers shuffling]

[while staring out the window] "That's great, Eli. God did make people. We are made to do just that. Love one another as family and as friends."

Eli: "Here it is, mom. My craft! I made our family. I have daddy, Casey, you, and me."

Me: [fiddling with re-organizing the front seat clutter and NOT being the attentive mom I should be] Neat, E-man.

And then with a louder more authoritative tone, Eli exclaims: "Mom, LOOK! I want to show you what I did!"

Feeling immediately guilty for not showing him my undivided attention, I swivel in my seat, throw my hand over the head rest and my eyes meet this wrapped in his hands outstretched to me:

Our family.
Made by Eli.

He instantly began "telling the story" of our family to me once he found my eyes in focus.

Eli: "This is me, mom. Member, my red coat that Casey now wears in the winter? I used to wear it and I looked like this cept I didn't have a puppy."

Eli: "Here's daddy. This is what he looks like when he goes to church. Daddy used to have this kind of hair but now he doesn't."

Eli: "And this is Casey. He's not a baby anymore, but I couldn't make him big like me either. He is smaller than me. I am almost 4 and he is 2. I couldn't find the right picture for him, and I had to make him smaller."

Eli: "And this is you, mom. I think I did good on you."

"I think I did good on you, mom."

Are you kidding me?


And then I melted. Completely turned to mush.

What the eyes of a child does see.

Lest Eli understand the meaning of hair extensions as my hair would never contort into such whimsical cuteness on its own accord no matter how much product and man power it took.

Complexion: crystal clear

Not even close, E-man.

With loads of gracious thank yous, smiles, and back seat high fives, that sweet boy absolutley gave me the best gift ever.

A lady cut out of a magazine and glued on construction paper.

And our "cut out family" through the eyes of Eli, was perfect in every way.

Eli's version of me at 33.

And the real me at 33.

At 33, I'll take either one!

.mac :)