The more you have the longer you live.

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This beauty is 4 years old today. Her eyes are like blue crystal, and they speak volumes and tell silent stories captivating those who listen. Ama is very grateful for this precious little granddaughter.

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This beauty is not 4 years old today, but her birthday is tomorrow, and this Ama isn’t her Ama but is her friend and I’m grateful for the laughter and friendship she’s added to my life.

Birthdays are a big deal. A celebration of life, a celebration of a person and their worth and impact. I have never understood those who choose to ignore these special days. One day each year to notice and show gratitude and reJOYce that this special person is alive and inhabits a spot in our heart.

Birthdays are for eating red velvet cake. Birthdays are for Barbie doll centerpieces. Birthdays are for awful blow-up-balloons-and-then-race-to-the-chair-and-sit-on-balloon-and-pop-it-and-then-race-back races.

Birthdays are for embarrassing sombreros and bad waiter/waitress singing. Birthdays are for trick candles that won’t blow out. Birthdays are for parties at ice skating rinks and McDonalds and scavenger hunts at the mall. Birthdays are for last minute frantic shopping and stressed out Mamas trying to pull off a successful party.

Birthdays are for hamsters in yellow and orange tube cages. Birthdays are for pulling out the You Are Special birthday plate. Birthdays are for slumber parties with sleeping bags and staying up lates.

Birthdays are for silly cards with heartfelt messages and homemade coupons to redeem inside. Birthdays are for cupcake treats to take to school. Birthdays are for making wishes. Birthdays are for happy surprises and feeling very loved.

I am grateful for birthdays that are celebrated and for those in my life who put forth the effort to recognize and appreciate the day a person was born by acknowledging above and beyond.

Birthdays are for making memories. I am grateful for the memories I have of past birthdays, and I wish many years of happy memories for you, Annistan and Julie.

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