…I love about you, my son:

1.  I love the way your mind works, logically assessing every situation, affirming daily just how much you’re like your father…

2.  I love the way you raise that one eyebrow…quizzically, humorously, disarmingly.  No one can stay mad for long, nor argue effectively when looking at your expression!

3.  I love that you call me “momkins” in that silly voice…

4.  I love the way you’re so protective of your siblings.  Yes…I know they think you’re a tyrant at times, but one day they’ll understand just how much you worry about them…

5.  I love the way you’ve embraced your masculinity.  Fearless and bold…never afraid to step up and defend the defenseless.  I’ve seen it time and time again…

6.  I love your creativity.  How quickly you find a solution to a seemingly impossible dilemma…

7.  I love your skillfulness.  There’s nothing you can’t fix or repair.  Just…like…your father…and his father before him…

8.  I love the way you serve the Mass.  A Master of Ceremonies by the age of fourteen…the gravity and awe of that responsibility is etched so clearly upon your face every Sunday.  And seeing you kneel beside sibling after sibling for their First Holy Communion?  Priceless…

9. I love the way you love your sisters. How you consider yourself the “big brother” no matter their age…especially with Clementine. Your protectiveness of her is a joy to observe…

10. I love the way you always take the lead. You don’t wait for someone else to get the job done. You’re more than willing to shoulder full responsibility or to make things happen…

11. I love your sense of humor. Like Father Lutz says…you’re one of the funniest guys he knows, but most people would never realize it because you seem so serious…but we know, don’t we?! I’m thinking about all those little “tricks” you particularly like to play on “momkins!”

12. I love the relationship you have with your Grandfather…how you love spending time with him. You’re very much alike, and he loves you so very much…

13. I love how tenderly and lovingly you help those in need…thank you for your compassionate heart!

14. I love that you think your dad is the best guy, ever! Your so much like him and you’re growing into an amazing man. You’ve had a fantastic example…

15. I love our conversations. How well you express yourself. You’ve become a great companion…

16. And, finally, I love you because you’re you. There’s no one else like you…I praise God for you, my first born son, and could go on and on…but I also know that this kind of stuff drives you crazy…so I’ll stop now and simply say:

Happy Birthday, big guy…I’m so proud of you!

Love,

Momkins