Fourteen and Feeling Fine

Dearest Caleb,

It's the evening of your fourteenth birthday. How is that even a true sentence I just wrote? Can you really be 14? I feel like just yesterday you were calling yourself "Buh-ligh" and talking our ears off about all things animals. Of course that could be becuase you still talk our ears off, though you can say your own name now!

Have I told you how much I love that you still talk our ears off? How much I love that you want me and dad to be involved in your life? I love so much that you care what we think and that you like to talk to us. I love our conversations and I love watching you growing into manhood.

You still love all things animals. How many 14 year old enjoy reading science books for fun? Well, you do, as long as it involves animals. I can't wait to see how God uses this interest/passion you have for wildlife.

You are now taller than me. You came into the kitchen Friday night and hugged me and thanked me for making your birthday cake and I realized I couldn't rest my chin on your shoulder anymore when we hug. When did that happen? It seems like you are taller every morning.

You've been taking high school level courses this year and you've handled it like a champ. I am truly amazed when I think of how you've just jumped in and figured out how to balance all the extra work this year.

You are still a bookworm. You never go anywhere without a book to read and as always, I can't get you to the library often enough since you finish books so quickly! And whenever you don't have a book to read, you just grab a Harry Potter book and pick up wherever you feel like it. Between that and Star Wars, we're due for an Orlando vacation!

This past year was a big one for you. You went on your first international mission trip to the Netherlands. I am so very thankful I got to experience that with you. You also got to visit Puerto Rico and the rainforest- a dream come true for a future biologist!

It's been a joy to watch you this year growing more into your faith, studying the scriptures and starting to serve the church. The way you have jumped into serving at church and have proven to be reliable and trustworthy makes me so proud. As you continue to grow, I pray you would make that your goal always- to let your yes be yes and your no be no, to be a man of your word who can be trusted to do what he says he will do.

You are a great brother, although bossy and stubborn at times. :) Your siblings know that you will always take care of them. You are a good friend, too. I am so thankful for the healthy and godly friendships you have in your life. I pray that you would keep seeking out friends who help you grow closer to Jesus and who encourage you in godliness and truth.

Caleb, what an absolute joy it is to be your mom. You changed my life forever 14 years ago. I cherish every moment I've had as your mom and I can't wait to see all that God is going to do in your life over the next several years. I am so proud of you and so thankful for you.

Happy 14th Birthday Caleb! We love you, no matter what, forever and ever.


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