Now that I've had a chance to sit down at the computer with my camera (while my kids are watching PBS for a few minutes...), I wanted to share some of my birthday party pictures. [Don't bother trying to blow these pictures up. I had to take them without the flash and they came out fuzzy. So stand several feet away from your monitor and pretend they are in focus, OK?]
As you know, I was pretty depressed about this birthday. The fact that "I'm getting old" was staring me full in the face, and I knew this one would be hard. So what did my friends do? They organized a full-blown, lots of attention, great food/great conversation party that reminded me that I am SO BLESSED. I was just surrounded by love, and that made turning 40 a pretty special day.
I couldn't ask for a better group of friends! This is Perrin (holding Marie) -- my walking buddy, idea-bouncer-offer, Bible study friend, homeschooling wonder woman (she comes up with the GREATEST ideas), and child-magnet. Marie wouldn't leave her side. I don't think I have ever met anyone as giving as she is... she just blows me away.
Next to her is Allison, who lives too far away from us but always makes the trek to come and visit. [God bless her!!] That smile you see is what you get whenever she comes into the room. Generous, loving, prayerful -- she is such an encouragement to me!
Then, of course, there is Malia. I could write for days about her, but let's just say that she is my lifeline. I talk to her by phone every day without fail, and she is always there with encouragement, prayer, fun stories, great recipes, and a listening ear on days when I think I'm going to lose it completely. I don't I could make it through the day without the Lord, tea, and a phone call to Malia.
Poor Julie. She is an amazing friend, and the only picture I got of her was this one -- and you can't really see her at all! She is my neighbor, the mother of my kids' best friends, and a great friend to me as well. She is full of faith, a great encourager, generous to a fault with her hospitality... amazing. Simply amazing.
Here's part of the "spread" they laid out for me. The flowers in the middle were part of Allison's gift to me...
And here are just a few of our kids crowded around to get at the cake...
And, of course, this is me. Am I choking myself? No, just trying to keep my hair out of the flames. I'm not sure WHAT my son was doing next to me... make up your own story!