birthday blessing from a friend


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emi turned 18 friday and while i could be a totally cliche mom & say “well that went by in a blink...” i’ll refrain. i think as mamas we all sense that though, you know? whether it’s sending off our little six year old to kindergarten or packing them up and heading off to a college dorm, we’re always caught off guard. its as if we’re always surprised each time a milestone rolls around.

my mom came over yesterday with a picture of her holding emi when she was probably less than a year, sucking her thumb and cuddling. she’s always been a lover. an eternal finder of the good in others. and almost always a happy kiddo. i have several thoughts of things i want to write about from my own heart, but today i want to share something else with you instead.

i think emi’s a words girl. i know i’ve dropped the ball in this one over the years. not said enough. not said it well enough, or tender enough. maybe i thought my actions or intentions were enough. in a day & age where i think the written, pen & ink, word has taken an unfortunate way backseat to texting and snapchats, i absolutely loved what one of her friends sent her in a text. we sat down on the floor of my closet and she shared this with me. so beautiful & truly what i feel sums up my emi. i asked her permission to share parts of it with you…so emi, happy birthday sweet girl. YOU do indeed love well. your heart for jesus is so easily visible in your actions and your words. i love you & am forever proud to be your mama.


“happy freaking birthday! i just wanted you to know how special you are! you have such a sweet heart emily & i have never met anyone like you! you care so much about your friends and you are always so sweet to them!  you want things to be happy & good all the time.  i am so glad we are friends because i love you!! 

i love how happy you are at school and how much joy you bring to the people around you!  you lighten up the mood for everyone around you.  and you are so beautiful.  you are one of the prettiest people i know.  you work so hard to do well in school and i admire that about you!  you have your priorities right & i love that too!! 

i also wanted to tell you how impressed i am in your relationship to God.  to be honest you are the reason i keep going to church and have been trying to get closer to Him.  watching you sing and worship is beautiful and i want a relationship with God just like yours. 

i hope you have a happy birthday emily!! YOU deserve it!!”

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August 25, 2014 - 7:40 pm

Hannah Avery - Happy Birthday to Emi!

August 25, 2014 - 9:12 pm

Maria - I just can’t believe that your three eldest girls are all “legal adults” now. YIKES. What does that say about how old we are getting? The text Emi’s friend sent her just proves what my years of reading your blog have led me to believe: Emi loves Jesus and her love of Him radiates. What more could a Mama hope for? She’s gorgeous inside and out.

August 25, 2014 - 9:35 pm

Donna - What a beauty! Hope she had a wonderful day! Love your pants.
I want some. Thoughts and prayers with you.

August 25, 2014 - 9:41 pm

Andrea - Happy Birthday sweet Emi……I have enjoyed watching you grow on your mama’s blog! It’s clear that your mama is so very proud of you!!!! Have a great year sweet girl….it’s so special when young lady’s are as pretty on the inside as they are on the outside…keep shining!

August 26, 2014 - 1:16 pm

chrissi - happy birthday to you miss emi. how lucky to have a friend who values you so much that she shares her true heart. you certainly must bring out the best in those around you. your smile is engaging. eighteen is the best. wear it well♥

August 26, 2014 - 3:45 pm

Jill Johnson - Sweet Emi. One of my favs. Happy Birthday! Xo

August 26, 2014 - 4:00 pm

Yolanda McLean - Too much sweetness! I don’t know Emi but I love her and I aspire to shine that kind of Light.

August 26, 2014 - 7:11 pm

Heather - Just beautiful!!! Be proud mama

August 26, 2014 - 9:52 pm

Rachel W - Happy belated to your sweet girl!

I continue to be amazed by your girls and the Godly women they have all become as they have grown over the years. I have been following your blog since 2008, which seems like yesterday and today all at the same time. At the time I was only 24, single, and just starting my life post college. I am now a mom to a sweet toddler girl and I hope you know how much I admire you and the way you have raised these girls! Thank you for sharing about your walk as a mom on here for the younger moms out there like myself 🙂

August 29, 2014 - 2:59 pm

Susan W - What a wonderful day for you Emily! Happy Day of your Birth Celebration young lady!!

September 4, 2014 - 8:24 am

Tammie - Happy Belated Birthday Emi, I hope you had a great birthday!
Paige she looks like you so much you two must get mistaken for twins!
It is so hard to watch them grow but also such an awesome feeling when they grow to become beautiful ladies inside as well as out.

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