It was my birthday recently. And the kids made it amazing. I'm not just saying that. I mean, it was AMAZING. I felt so loved and special and so honored to be their mom. Last year we skipped all Christmas and birthday stuff because the kids had just gotten home and we didn't want overwhelm them.
This year, we had a blast and even did a party for Levi's birthday (which included a group of ten eating at his favorite Ethiopian restaurant and then a movie and snacks/cake/ice cream. He got some awesome gifts (including a cell phone from me and Abe......WHAT?!?!?!?) and birthday $$$ from some of our family.
The day before MY birthday, Levi started asking me if we could go cash his birthday checks. I was like, "Hunny, our schedule is full today; we can go tomorrow, okay?" He started panicing and begging to go to the bank and saying, "Mom, it HAS to be TODAY! Pleaseeeeeeeee!!!!!!!!!!" and I realized he must want to spend some of it on my birthday. So we made a run to the bank (much to his obvious relief.....so precious!). That night I worked till 10pm and Abe took them shopping for my birthday while I was gone.
Fast forward to 3am the next day when I got up for work. My house was decked out with streamers. :) Even the banister and the lampstands. And Mia's bed area (Mia didn't seem too big on all the dangly and twisting streamers over and in front of her bed haha!).
When I got home at 8am, Abe, Levi, and Z were waiting at the door for me. The kids were literally jumping up and down with excitement. They grabbed me in a 4-person bear hug and then Zahria gasped and said (her acting needs help :)) "DADDY! We forgot the presents!" Then she grabbed my hand and dragged me to the livingroom, where a MOUNTAIN of presents was on the couch. Abe said, "Get out your tissues," and Zahria started handing me packages.
Levi had bought me a bear figuerine. It was a boy bear, holding a heart that said, "I love you", and standing on a bigger heart. He said, "Mom, that's me, and the heart I am standing on is yours!"
Insert tears. And hugs.
Zahria started handing me her gifts. Paracord to make cool bracelets that we both love. Two stunning bracelets that I have been drooling over. A Starbucks giftcard for $6. A wooden board that she cut and painted herself (it said, "Happy Birthday"). $15 cash for a nose ring. And a card that made me cry all over again.
Abe gave me a wall decal that I loved.....it's a music staff and notes running all over it and it's beautiful. We hung it up in our room of course.
I mean to add--we don't give our kids an allowance. They earn all their spending money, and they tithe off it. So it doesn't accumulate quickly. They have spent a lot of hours earning their money. So for them to spend it on me.......it seriously was amazing. They understand GIVING. And they were so happy and excited.
Levi's other present was last. It was huge. Like, flatscreen TV huge. Now Zahria is our giver. She will give you the clothes off her back, her favorite doll, her food, whatever she has. She is constantly giving away her stuff. She LOVES to give. She loves to spend her money on other people.
Levi is different. He holds onto his money for himself. The only time I have seen him spend it not on himself was for Christmas when we all bought each other gifts. He always buys himself cool clothes or gadgets, but he does not spend money on other people. So for him to buy me two gifts was huge. And this gift.....well, clearly by the size alone, it wasn't cheap.
I opened it and started bawling. Inside was a framed photograph.....six horses running through a duststorm. It was BEAUTIFUL. Levi and I had falled in love with it at a store one day (we stared at it forever) and he knew how much I loved it. And I knew how much it cost. That picture alone was $50. He had $30 of birthday money and $20 that he had earned. So he spent ALL his money. On me. My child who isn't willing to let go of a single dollar took everything he had and bought me a gift. A beautiful, precious gift.
I cried and hugged him while he grinned and said, "Mom, you love it?!?!?" and then we ran to my bedroom and hung it above my side of the bed. It looks incredible.....and totally matches the room.
Best. Birthday. Ever.