I’m gonna party like it’s my birthday. Oh wait… it is!

Inaugural blogs often feel like the opening monologue on “Saturday Night Live”- necessary to get things started, but awkward for everyone. So let’s just rip this bandage off, shall we?

I’ve been told a few times that I should consider writing a blog. I like the idea of it- a cathartic release of all these thoughts and experiences jumbling around inside of my head. I like other people’s blogs. However, every time I think about writing one, I feel like it’s a declaration of “Hey everybody! Listen to me! I’m clever and witty! My life is more interesting than yours! And now I’m going to tell you all about it!” Of course, I don’t feel that way about my friends who  are already blogging. But since when does my measuring stick of others ever apply to my own life?

So, here I am. I’m blogging. I must say, it’s not so bad. I thought it would be a little scarier. Of course, I haven’t posted this yet, so there’s that. If you’re reading this, though, it means I took the plunge. I did it. Let’s take a moment and do a slow “80’s teen movie slow clap” for my courage.

Ok, you can stop now. I appreciate the support, but frankly, it’s starting to make me a little uncomfortable.

I don’t think there’s anything especially interesting about my life that justifies me having my own blog. But I believe that life in general offers constant opportunities to find humor, all we have to do is keep our eyes open. I will say that I have an extremely quick- witted husband, who has passed down his quirky way of viewing the world to our four kids. And we are strong believers in the power of laughter to make any situation better. It’s our main coping mechanism around here.

Today is my 41st birthday. Man, that sounds old. Doesn’t that sound old? I asked my friend/therapist/hair stylist Marques this week, “Doesn’t that sound old?” He responded, “You don’t look or act the way I imagined a 40 year old would.” I took this as a compliment. Hopefully it means I don’t act senile and decrepit, and not that I’m just immature.

My husband, Jeff, is still 40. He has approximately three more weeks of being 40, and he is reveling in that fact.  Last year, for my 40th birthday, he was really laying on the “old lady” shtick pretty thick. My daughter Zoe, who was 8 at the time,  was horrified by the gag gifts he gave me and spent most of the evening offended and in tears on my behalf. I wish that I could post all of the hilarious things that my husband says, but most aren’t fit for public consumption. Just know that for every funny thing he says that I recount, there are probably a hundred more that I cannot.

We have 4 kids. Technically we now have 3 kids and one adult, as our oldest, Sydney, is 18. You likely won’t hear much about Sydney. Not because she’s not funny. She is. Mostly because Sydney is a stealth comedian. She doesn’t say a lot, but when she does, it’s spot on. She’s an observer by nature, but she’s also kind-hearted and doesn’t like making fun of other people, unlike her parents. The thing about Sydney is that  she’s truly one of the best people I’ve ever known. I know I’m her mom, but I’d say the same if I wasn’t. I’d like to take credit for her, but as our oldest, she’s endured the spectrum of our parenting learning curve and yet somehow come out the other end a spectacular human being. More of a miracle than an accomplishment on our part.

Our son Nathan is just finishing his freshman year in high school. Other than a mid-year “come to Jesus” intervention of early- onset senioritis, his freshman year has been fairly uneventful. Nathan is our enigma. I’m certain he’s much different elsewhere than who he reveals himself to be at home. Even his voice is deeper when he talks to his friends. I find him a puzzle I can’t quite solve. What I do know is that  he adores his younger siblings with a fierceness that touches my heart. He’s smart, constantly surprising me with poignant, thoughtful questions and interesting facts. His humor is intelligent, and I often hear his laughter echoing up to me from downstairs long after he’s supposed to be in bed. Some day I hope to know him better. For now I just wait for those rare moments when he shares snippets of himself, and I treasure them.

When Nathan was 5 years old, Zoe was born. Whereas Nathan reveals little to nothing of the inner workings of his mind and heart, Zoe wears it all on her sleeve. Bedazzled. In flashing neon. With an accompanying soundtrack. Everything about Zoe is bold; From her deep belly laugh, to her constant throaty full-voiced singing. From her deep sensitivity, to her passionate exuberance and joy. Zoe is the most like me of all of my kids, which means many of our interactions leave me standing motionless, mouth agape. How do you argue with someone who knows how to use your own logic against you? I look forward to Zoe’s adolescent years with great trepidation and full anticipation of the roller coaster that is coming. She’s a walking, back-talking, Ethel Merman-singing, one-girl show.

Our youngest, Parker, Is just completing first grade. In many of my best stories, Parker is the starring character. And what a character he is. The classic baby of the family, combined with a severe height deficiency and a huge personality equate to the napoleon complex personified that is Parker. A bit of a diva, often his only saving grace is his cute little freckled face and big blue eyes. It never occurs to him that anyone may have a valid point of view other than his (I have no idea where he gets that from.) At 7, he still subscribes to the toddler rules of propriety. It’s not with malicious intent- it’s just how he believes life should work for him. And so far, it has. He has no filter whatsoever, so many of the things that come out of his mouth are shocking and often hilarious. It’s hard to encapsulate a description of Parker in just a couple of sentences. His is a personality that just needs to be experienced. You’ll see.

As for me, I’m the ring leader of this circus we call a family. I’m your typical stay at home mom with unfulfilled potential. I guess that’s where this blog comes in- an attempt to keep my brain semi-functional, and an outlet for all the crazy things I am witness to on a daily basis. Sometimes sharing the crazy makes it seem less crazy. Like somehow talking about it dissipates it a little. So, thanks for joining me on this journey. I will do my very best to make it worth your while.

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