Saturday, August 04, 2012

Isaac's Birthday

This amazing boy of mine turned 11 on July 19th.

We celebrated at Bear Lake with all his great cousins. His group's Grammie Camp was the night before his birthday so he got to wake up with his cousins and have amazing crepes made by his wonderful Grammie for breakfast. Then the younger cousins had a treasure hunt all set up for him when he got back from Grammie camp and all the kids had a grand dam building contest that evening in his honor (his team won - their dam held water for over and hour without leaking).

When Jared came up to the lake on Friday (the day after Isaac's birthday), we took him out to a special lunch on the other side of the lake. After all the crowds, it was nice to have a little time with just the three of us. Isaac is becoming such a mature young man and it's so fun to talk with him.

I can't believe it's been 11 years since this little guy popped into the world just 30 minutes after I got to the hospital and about 15 minutes after his dad joined me there. What a crazy quick ride it was to bring Isaac into the world. And the minute he was born, I felt a natural high I've never experienced before or since and my recovery was remarkably quick and easy. He went on to be a super-easy baby who'd sleep anytime, anywhere, eat anything, and smile constantly. And while he certainly has his issues like any kid, he's still about as easy-going and kins a kid can be.

Here's Isaac at 7 months old:

Here are my top 11 things I love about my 11-year-old:

1. Isaac is kind. Ever since he was a toddler, he's been happy to share anything he has with anyone who shows an interest. When anyone is sad, he's the first to notice and try to help. This past year at school, he befriended a boy in his class with special needs and made sure to play with him at recess and help him when he was struggling in the classroom.

2. Isaac is a hard worker. If you want someone to stick with a job and do it well, Isaac is your man. Isaac seems to actually love work. He anxiously awaits the grass getting long enough to need to be mowed since mowing the lawn is fun for him (I really hope this lasts for a while..). He's especially excited to help his dad or his uncles with projects like building a fence or fixing a car. My mom said he worked harder and better than any cleaning ladies she's had when he stayed an extra day to help her clean up the cabin at the end of our time at Bear Lake.

3. Isaac is confident and courageous. He's always up for trying something new and walks into unfamiliar situations excited and ready for anything. Whether it's eating canned squid or jumping off the high dive or heading down a black diamond on skis, Isaac's up for it. And he'll do it well.

4. Isaac is friendly, likable and amicable. He's great at making new friends everywhere he goes with people of all ages. He'll talk to anyone, anywhere. Even as a baby, he was always making eye contact with people and flashing them his beautiful smile. He has no problem going up to people and politely asking for things at stores and restaurants. He's quick with a smile and a kind comment just about anytime, anywhere. I love going into Isaac's parent-teacher conferences and seeing the look on his teachers' faces when I say I'm Isaac's mom. They always smile and talk about how much they just plain like Isaac and how helpful and kind and hardworking he is.

5. Isaac has a special love and ability with babies and young kids. Isaac is SO cute with babies. He's always been really interested in babies - even newborns. He loves their tiny hands and toes. He loves the noises they make. He loves their soft skin. And he's super good at making babies smile and soothing them when they're sad. He couldn't get enough of his cute little baby cousins at Bear Lake!

6. Isaac powers through tough stuff and keeps working until he's got it figured out. Reading didn't come easily to Isaac. We were both in tears at times as we'd plow through books together and try to get that reading a little more smooth and fast. Homework used to take him ages as it was hard to get his mind in gear and focus on the challenging worksheets in front of him. But in the past year, through hard work and perseverance, Isaac has become a solid reader, has sped up his homework performance drastically, and has received almost all A's in school the past two terms.

7. Isaac is loving. I can count on a hug and a kiss from Isaac every day. I love that.

8. Isaac is appreciative. He's always saying thank you for the meals I make, for the nice things other people do for him, etc.

9. Isaac is agile and strong and coordinated and fast. That kid can climb anything, ride anything on any surface (you should see him on his rip stick or on a tricky trail on his mountain bike), do feats on a wakeboard, ski amazingly well given that he's only been skiing about 6 times, run a 5K like it's nothing, beat about anyone in a foot race. He thinks it's great to try to pick me up - and he can actually do it. Feats of strength, stamina and skill are really fun for him.

10. Isaac always has his watch on. He's generally the only one who knows what time it is around here and he's great at timing the twins to get them to do things and timing our reading time and that sort of thing. A guy with a good digital watch is a handy guy to have around.

11. Isaac is happy. I love how Isaac is always happy and excited about pretty much everything. His attitude helps everyone's mood around here.

I love this boy of mine!

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