Seven! A Birthday Letter to BigBrother


Today you are seven.

I am dumb-founded, overwhelmed with love, lost in a sea of memories and nostalgia. But today isn’t about me and how you’ve shaped and changed me as a human, a woman and a mother. No, today is about you and everything you are and do and hope and dream.

The clock read 7:15am as you stood by my bed this morning, big smile across your face. This is perhaps one change in your life in the past year: You sleep past seven-zero-zero on occasion, though rarely on a weekend. Your school schedule, sports, social life, hard play and other activities make you sleep even harder than you ever have in the past. Sometimes I have to wake you up for school at 7:30, especially on nights you decide to stay up and read after I have tucked you in. I rarely tell you no when you ask to do so; I want you to love to read. And you do.

What else have you done this year? You’ve learned to climb trees. You have taken on responsibility for pets here and there; it’s your job to uncover the birds every morning. I’ll never forget the morning you sat and read Phineas and Ferb jokes to them; you love all of your pets — all new to us in this last year of your life — so very much. Your heart is so big.

You learned how to ride your bike without training wheels! I hope Santa comes through for you and brings you that new bike you are asking him for; I bet you’ll be able to ride faster than me!

You tore up the soccer field. You played t-ball for the city team and ran harder than anyone else on the field. You always give your all when you’re playing a sport — or really, just playing at all. It’s a joy to watch you play, to watch you try so hard and accomplish what you set out to do. I am always so proud of you, even if you don’t make a goal. To be honest, I love to see you high five your teammates and tell them, “Good job!” Again, your heart. I love it.

You started a new school, started riding the bus and made student of the month. So much for our fears about the transition! You quite possibly inherited my talking and volume genes, but you are doing so well in school and you love it, your teacher and your friends. I wish that for you for many, many years to come.


Of course, one thing I keep returning to in this past year is your heart. It was especially evident last night when we went out to dinner and your little brother wasn’t feeling well. I went to sit with him in the car while you and Daddy finished your meals. I was, shall we say, hangry by the time we all got home with my food in a box. Perhaps I raised my voice trying to get in the door to eat. As I sat there, wolfing down my lukewarm enchiladas, you came up to me and said, “I’m sorry you didn’t get to eat at the restaurant, Mommy.” You care about others, even when they’re grumpy. I love that about you and others do too.

I don’t love that our socks are now the same size because I can’t tell them apart. You’re growing so fast! I know that’s a good thing, but my goodness, child! I can’t keep up!

I also don’t love the smart mouth that you sometimes use or when you dawdle as we’re trying to get out the door. But let’s face it, I have a smart mouth sometimes (…) and I almost always forget something when we’re trying to get out the door, so maybe we could work on those things together this year.

Posing All Ready

Today you are seven. Seven years ago I had no idea who you were going to be other than the chubby little baby in my arms with the big wide eyes and all that hair. Now, having known you for seven years, I have an inkling — however small — of who you’re going to be later in life. More over, I know who you are now, and I love that boy to pieces.

Fall Portraits

I wish you the best year you’ve had yet, my BigBrother Boy. I’m glad that I know you, love you, get to experience this next year with you. I’m glad that I’m your Mommy.


PS: This is the first birthday letter I’m letting you read on the blog. I hope you liked it!


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Grammar Lessons

Once a week, BigBrother brings home some vocabulary sight words that match his current reading level. He has to read them, write them, write a sentence about them and then draw a picture. It’s a longer process than his reading or math homework, but it’s an enjoyable one. What’s more fun than talking about words, defining them and using them in sentences? Nothing!

Sometimes the words are hard to use in a sentence and even more difficult to depict via a drawing. The word “foreign” stumped both adults and the kid for quite some time one week. My favorite word thus far was the word butcher, mainly because of the kid’s drawing.

A Butcher Cuts Meat

I never tell him what to draw. He came up with the meat cleaver and the x’s for eyes all by himself. I don’t know whether to be amused or disturbed. Oh wait, yes I do: Definitely amused.

In this week’s word list, the word “grammar” brought about a fun conversation as we sat at the breakfast bar in the kitchen.

Well, what’s grammar?” He chewed on the top of his pencil, looking at me from behind his long eyelashes.


“Oh, grammar! Grammar is kind of what Mommy does. It’s periods and commas and picking the right word and speaking properly and all the best things in the world!” I could have gone on for quite some time.

Now it might surprise you that sometimes my son does not listen to me. Shocking, I know. I looked at him and couldn’t tell. Was he listening? Or was he thinking about how he gets to use his computer time as soon as this homework is done and here his Mommy is, blathering on about grammar like a big ole dork. And so I asked.

“What did I just say?” I narrowed my eyes at him as he peeked up at me.

He paused.

You said grammar was about periods… and commas… and the best stuff in the world.

I smiled.

Lesson learned.