Monday, August 30, 2010

A Birthday Book of Hope -- and then some!

DD12 has become DD13! To commemorate her entry into young womanhood, DH had the brilliant idea of creating a "Book of Hope." We sent out an invitation to friends and family asking them to write a personal message of hope for the future to our daughter, and include a picture if they wished. The response was overwhelmingly wonderful, and DH created an awesome scrapbook that can be treasured for the years to come.

Of course, I won't show you all the personal stuff, but I wanted to give you a glimpse of this wonderful "Book of Hope" in case it inspires you to create something similar for someone you love:

Here is the beautiful birthday girl about to cut her "Facebook" cake -- another brain child of my DH. One of our DD's anticipated privileges of turning 13 was being able to go on Facebook, so when we asked what kind of cake she wanted (thinking about flavours!), she said "A Facebook cake!" So, using a screenshot of his own profile and then modifying it with fun family photos and comments directed to her, he created an image which he took to the bakery. They printed the image on marshmallow paper, so the cake looked like a computer screen with a Facebook profile:) How cool is that? (Sorry -- you'll just have to use your imagination to "see" the cake ;)

We thought long and hard about how to make this birthday a memorable one, as it marks the beginning of a new era for our daughter, when she really begins to mature into adulthood and independence. Because we want to encourage her to be reflective about herself and who she is, but also to look beyond herself to the needs of others, we hope to do a missions trip with her this year so she can see the world outside of her immediate frame of reference. We have yet to determine when and where -- but we're all excited about the prospects of learning about life by serving others in a meaningful way. She has a heart for "social justice,"  so we suspect that such an experience might be a turning point in her life. The trick is to find something that will be appropriate for her but not "all about her" -- which is the last thing we want to make it. KWIM?

Anyway, when it comes to making a birthday memorable, one thing we never considered a remote idea was enabling our DDs "over 80" grandmother (she's sensitive about her age -- though I think the actual number makes it all the more impressive!!!!) to fulfill one of her "life-long dreams" by

Drumroll please . . .

going for a ride on a motorcycle! But one of our guests was giving rides to the children and my mother decided this might be her only chance to do this thing she'd always wanted to do! So, with a little help from a throng of cheering observers, she did it!

Not to be outdone, my MIL, who is younger but a great grandma now, decided she would go for a ride, since she'd never been before either!

What a riot! DD13, who was thrilled to ride herself, said her rockin', "hard core" grandmas (along with their awesome driver) made it the Best Birthday Party EVER!

She did confess, though, that she almost cried when she realized her dad had not given her his traditional bouquet of roses -- until it occurred to her that her party did not take place on her actual birthday! Here is the happy girl with her birthday bouquet:

What great birthday memories do you have? Are there traditions associated with those memories? Have you come up with any creative ways to commemorate a special birthday? Please do share by leaving a comment!

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