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September 20, 2022

Dear friends,

This is birthday week in my house. Georgia and Anna were born 4 years and three days apart, and so it is a big week. We try to do our best with equity of presents (and attention), not just between the two of them but also with Elizabeth whose birthday is several months away. It is tough, but one thing we have always tried to stick to is that we can do big presents, or we can do a big party, but it’s tough to do both.

It makes me think of my great aunt, who read an article one time about “half birthdays.” She read this article about kids whose birthdays fall around major holidays (like mine which is three days after Christmas), and how those kids feel slighted because people give them presents and say it is for both Christmas and birthday. My aunt was very upset that this was happening to me (these scars run deep), and so she decided that she would take me shopping for my “half-birthday” present in June. Which was great, but then my birthday rolled around, and I was still expecting a present, so it kind of backfired a little.

I’ve heard that one of the best ways to show someone you care is through an unexpected gift at an unexpected time. When we load all kinds of expectations onto birthdays or holidays, that is when we become overwhelmed and frustrated. Embry Hills is a gift to me and my family. It is a gift for me to watch my girls be acolytes and sing in the choir. There are so many more gifts that our church has to offer our community, and I hope we can give them. We can let people know how much we care through unexpected gifts at unexpected times, and we can let everyone know how much they are truly loved by God and our church. Giving is not a one-time event, and there are so many opportunities!



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