Fourteen years this kid has been making me smile. He was a happy baby, unless we were in the car. A little weird looking at the beginning, but after about two weeks the cuteness quotient started increasing and hasn’t stopped.
Now he’s still a happy guy, especially when we are in the car. Reading is probably his top favorite pastime followed closely by building with Legos and playing Minecraft.
But I digress…the best thing about this man cub is how much he loves his sisters. Or how he still comes and randomly gives me hugs (I realize there is the ulterior motive of seeing if he’s taller than me yet, he has an inch left, but I’ll take it). Or how he geeks out about math and cars and stock trading with his dad. Or how he is owning his lawn mowing responsibilities. Or how he tries to hide how proud he is of his six pack and how many pull ups he can do. Ok, fine. There are a lot of best things about my son. I love him and I’m glad he’s mine.
As you know by now, dear reader, all birthdays start with the cake. We brainstormed and scoured the internet and landed on a giant Reese’s Cup cake. With an internal surprise of Reese’s pieces. My huge cupcake cake pan has been worth every penny.
It was awesome. I kept messing up the ganache to cover the peanut butter cake in the middle (good thing I got the Sam’s Club mondo bag of chocolate chips…just in case) so ultimately went with straight chocolate chips. That gave me a beautiful presentation but eating the chocolate shell was almost impossible. Oh well. I’ll know for the next huge Reese’s Cup I make.
This was a friend birthday year for the boy. Which was…unfortunate timing. Bowling was out. Long guest list was out. Our compromise was a few friends, lots of pizza, and a non-little-girl type movie (the first Lord of the Rings movie). Speaking of little girls…
It’s true they were banished upstairs, but they got their own pizza and movie party with their favorite Dad guy. We have some new movies to watch on repeat now…Mune (a Netflix treasure and my new favorite movie) and another Barbie movie. Sigh.
Note to self: three hours is a long watch time for a room full of squirrly youth who have probably seen the movie a few times. Luckily, they all had a great time talking through it and making fun of it so it was awesome.
After the movie they ran around the yard and played night games until parents came. It was seriously the greatest way to celebrate his crossing the line from kid to youth. I was so pleased with how everything turned out.
Birthday dinner at Grandma and Grandpa Ballard’s house. He knew he was getting his first cell phone, but he didn’t know I’d gotten the case he wanted. He is still thrilled with the novelty and grown-up-ness of it all. Since his cake was destroyed at the party, he got to choose a back-up dessert for the family birthday dinner. Did you know that orange meringue pie is a thing? It is and it was well loved by all.
There’s a lot of uncharted territory we are embarking one this next tour around the sun. Highschool/“real” school, early morning Seminary (for both of us), a world hamstrung by a pandemic. But Garyn is still a pretty happy guy, especially being loved by his family, having opportunities to make people smile, and having lots of things to build.