Monday, December 12, 2011

Happy Birthday Sweet 16!

I can hardly believe that she is 16.  Am I going to feel this way about each birthday?  The days go slowly, but the years do fly.  I'm thankful for each day and year - they have been sweet.

All the stories about teenaged girls ... I just haven't seen it.  Not to say that she doesn't have her moments - but then so do I!  She has a sweet heart and it really does come through in what she does.  She often looks for ways to bless others and I love that!

Rebecca was born the Saturday after Thanksgiving.  I remember one of my good friends then had a birthday around Thanksgiving too.  She told me that as an adult that she loved having her birthday near Thanksgiving because she was always near family who celebrated with her.  I loved that - and it was so much nicer than hearing how difficult it is to have a birthday in the mix of the holidays.

So, most years, Rebecca does celebrate her birthday pretty close to Thanksgiving.  This year was no exception.  It was the day after Thanksgiving.  She picked what she wanted for breakfast - biscuits with sausage gravy AND orange juice!  We all enjoyed it.  (Well, not Eliana due to the gluten.)

 On their birthday, we ask our children what they would like to do to celebrate and do our best to accommodate it.  We also like to have them choose all of the food for the day.  Rebecca thought it would be fun to go shopping for her birthday.  We have typically not be close to many retail places when we were in the mountains, but this was just not the case at the beach.

Are you remembering back to when her birthday fell this year?  The day after Thanksgiving.  Yes, Black Friday.  She wanted to go shopping on Black Friday.  So we did.  We actually started the night before.  She knew of a particular item she wanted at the outlet mall and it opened at 10pm on Thur night.  So, Rebecca, Christopher and I headed out.  Did I mention that we had never been shopping before on Black Friday?  We arrived at the mall shortly after it was opened and the parking lot was PACKED!  Cars parked in every legal and illegal space imaginable.  After driving crawling slowly around the mall once, those two got out to shop while I drove around.  I did finally find a spot and went in to meet them. We bought a few things at the first store and then looked around a few more.  Did I mention that it was crazy in here?!

We decided to leave and go to Kohls which opened at midnight.  Um, yes, it was very crazy there too.  We shopped for awhile and then got in line.  It wrapped around the building twice.  After standing for awhile (20 min?), I went to ask if we could put things on hold.  Yes!  Just needed to be back before 1pm the following day in order to get the sale prices.

So the next day we headed back to Kohls.  This time Christopher stayed home and my niece Keri joined us.  The lines were MUCH shorter and easier to navigate.  We had lunch at Chick-Fil-A.
 We gathered together - all of us - for dinner. Pizza, salad and red pepper dip with chips.  This is the birthday girl with her siblings and cousins on my side of the family.
 Cupcake cake for our birthday girl.
Laughing as another sibling gives her a box of Skittles.

Rebecca always brings cheer and laughter to a group.  She quick to smile and always ready to have fun. She is a faithful friend and wonderful sister!
Her big surprise gift this year was a guitar!  She has been asking for one and it was fun to see how excited this gift made her.  Its also been fun to hear her working at learning how to play.
So many things I could say about Rebecca.  She is beautiful.  This is true on the outside, but even more so on the inside where it matters.  Rebecca has a tender heart and I love seeing the ways that she reaches out to comfort, encourage and help others.

Rebecca can be quiet in a group (or if you don't know her well), but she really blossoms when hanging out with young children.  She loves playing with them and delights in the conversations that she has with them.  She also blossoms on a stage!  Rebecca loves to act and perform.  She has an amazing capacity for memorizing and uses this well when she is in a play.  I love watching her act and share her talents in this way.

Rebecca is creative and imaginative in so many ways.  She loves to make things for others and brings great joy with her gifts.  Rebecca is an excellent cook and especially enjoys baking.  We all enjoy that too!

Rebecca loves to learn about God, but more importantly, she loves God!  I'm excited to see her growing in her walk with God and pray that she would continue to fall more deeply in love with Him.  One of her other birthday gifts was a new Bible.  I have read through the New Testament praying for her as I read it and making some notes to her in the Bible.  I hope to finish the Old Testament soon (but didn't want to wait any longer to give it to her).  

Rebecca, I love your heart to serve and bless others.  I love your sweet spirit and tender heart.  I love you more than words can ever say.  I'm so thankful you are my daughter.  You have been a blessing to me for 16+ years now.  

I love you!


  1. Lovely tribute to a beautiful girl! Thanks for sharing her with us.

  2. Leslie,
    It just doesn't seem possible. I enjoyed reading your tribute to your girl.

    Love and hugs~

  3. Happy Birthday to your lovely young woman. I can't imagine being out there late at night on the eve of Black Friday. YOu are a good mom. I bet it was a new experience.
    To make a collage with your photos~ I use photbucket. I clicked on the album I was using and then it asked if I wanted to make a collage. I clicked on it and dragged the pictures into the frame. It is a fun way to squeeze in several pictures.

  4. I keep trying to tell her happy birthday but my internet is being putzy! EEK!

    If you get this: Lovely post! Beautiful girl! Happy Birthday!

    If not: I suppose you'll never know. HA!

  5. She is a lovely girl-I know cuz we met her! LOL Happy Belated Rebecca! Lovely post Leslie! I will be emailing you-had a rough couple days here-our oldest was in a car accident...ttys


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