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Dear Miles,

Dear Miles,

December 13, 2007

Three Years Old

You are three years old. Hard for me to believe.

I want to write more for you on this occasion, but there is a blizzard outside that demands playing in. A pig I had to rush and pick up early this morning before the blizzard started. We are going to have pork chops for dinner tomorrow.

You like pork chops, right? No, okay then it is chicken.

Laundry, schoolwork, deadlines, decorating, and christmas lists to Santa to write and rewrite. Everything piles up sometimes and I am left here treading water not sure that I am doing well any one of the myriad of things that needs to be done.

Is it better to to lots of things half-assed, or one thing really great while blowing off all of the others? This is the question of my life.

We will make you a real cake this weekend. Or buy you one as you are demanding a trip to the store where they have the big cakes. The brownie on the table with a lame candle stuck into it was just something I did for fun last night after dinner since all your siblings wanted to sing happy birthday to you.

We sang the “you look like a monkey” version.

Your sister made you a card. She ceremoniously read the card out loud to us, none of the rest of us can read squiggles, and it said:

“Happy Birthday Miles. You are three. I am four. I am bigger than you. Please don’t spit or cough on the cake when you blow out the candles.”

What else can I possibly say that would top that?

Updated to add:

I did not FORGET his birthday. We always have a party on the weekend since my husband has this annoying thing called a job that must go to. I thought that was fairly typical, but maybe that is just what self centered mothers who don’t love their children do.

I was talking about was WRITING a birthday post to my son. Which really is more for me than for him since he can’t even read yet. And do I really need to explain myself?

Posted by Chris @ 4:23 pm  

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  1. Jaime says:

    Happy birthday buddy!

  2. Susan says:

    Awwww, Miiiiiiles. I love that kid.

    Happy birthday, buddy.

  3. Lilly says:

    Happy happy birthday Miles! As always, you’re adorable.

  4. Kate says:

    He is so super-cute, I can hardly stand it. Happy Birthday!

  5. Lisa Lisa says:

    Awww! How sweet! Miles is seriously way too cute for his own good. Kids this cute can be spoiled way too easily. Trust me I know. I am guilty of this myself.

    In my house with 3 little ones everything is Chicken or else they won’t even try it :o)

    Happy 3rd Birthday Miles!!!

  6. Mish says:

    Happy Birthday, Miles!!

  7. nabbalicious says:

    God, he is so adorable. They all are! Happy birthday, Miles!

  8. carola says:

    Nothing tops your daughter letter! happy b-day Miles!

  9. Heather B. says:

    Oh that sister of his is something special ;-) Hope Mr. Miles had a wonderful day.

  10. Crystal D says:

    Happy Birthday cutie pie!

  11. She Likes Purple says:

    You seem like just an incredible mother. With just jaw-droppingly adorable kids. Happy Birthday Miles!

  12. Amy says:

    I hope that Im reading this wrong but you forgot his birthday?
    Chris, birthdays come one time a year and you couldn’t even do that for him?
    Psh, now maybe if his birthday was a blog post you wouldn’t forget that.

  13. Lilly says:

    Oooooh Amy, no no no, she did not forget. You did read it wrong! Okay, that’s straightened out. Now we can move on with the birthday wishes for sweet Miles!

  14. Rachel May says:

    Wow, Amy. I really hope you were joking. If you were, it didn’t come across that way; it’s pretty harsh.

    We do weekend celebrations, too, Chris.

    Happy, happy birthday, sweet Miles!

  15. Meg says:

    Ignore that crazy woman. The rest of us who read you regularly KNOW you did not forget his birthday and that you have a LIFE outside of blogging that perhaps makes you not able to write about everything AS IT HAPPENS. Some people need to freaking get a life and stop being so judgmental.

    Anyway, Happy birthday little Miles!!

  16. Christie says:

    If he is like my son, he loves getting to celebrate TWICE!!!!

  17. maliavale says:

    I will alternatively squeeze Miles (sooo cute) and kick that woman (hi-yah!). OK? Good.

  18. joe says:

    amy, you wrote “you couldn’t even do that for him?”

    delurking to say that the above comment implies chris doesn’t do much for her kids. seems to me she spends just about every minute of her life with them (’cause you do know she homeschools, right?).

    every birthday and holiday is celebrated thoroughly in that house.

    since you did indeed “read it wrong”, how about a little apology? just as one shouldn’t forget birthdays, one should never neglect conveying a sincere mea culpa.

  19. Amy says:

    Happy Birthday Miles!

    Chris, I hope you do find some time to write a post for Miles. Those always bring tears to my eyes…

  20. Katie says:

    Happy birthday Mr. Miles! 3 is a great age!

    And I think bacon would make a great birthday meal.

  21. Bethany says:

    We don’t always celebrate on the actual day, either. Sometimes life just gets in the way.

  22. Kate says:

    I am totally sure that you forgot his birthday, that’s why you posted the photo of you about to go into labor three years ago yesterday. AMY.

  23. heels says:

    Dang- if that boy looks like a monkey then monkeys must be WAY cuter than I was lead to believe!

    Happy Birthday!

  24. Estee says:

    Happy Birthday, Miles!! :)

  25. Jennifer says:

    Some people need to get a life of their own instead of judging others.

    I think the candle in the brownie is classic! Happy Birthday Miles!

  26. xianfern says:

    Hasn’t Amy commented before? And in a negative light? It would seem like she really doesn’t like your blog.. funny that she keeps coming back for more!
    Screw her.
    Happy Birthday Miles!! :)

  27. Stephanie says:

    Yikes! Someone lost their sense of humor, or tone was lost or something went terribly awry when posting a comment…
    Anyhoo, Chris, you are hilarious as always, and I’m certain a wonderful mother.
    Happy Birthday Miles! You are adorable, even if you do look like a monkey and smell like one too!

  28. Heather says:

    What a lucky boy, to be sent a blizzard for his birthday! Happy birthday celebrations to Miles, and happy birth day remembrances to you Chris!

    (PS - doesn’t this storm ROCK!! I’m so loving it! It’s been so long since we’ve had a bonafied snowfall… none of that silly flurrying this time!. Hope all your loved ones are safely home, ready to play in piles of the white stuff very very soon!)

  29. Andi says:

    Aw, Chris, ignore the jackassery, and embrace the kids! Anybody who’s spent more than a week reading your blog would understand. I simply adore the picture of him with his brownie, it’s such a dimpled “Who, me?! Aw, shucks!” expression- just perfect! My mother always used to have our birthday parties on weekends too, it just makes more sense like that, doesn’t it? At least, it does if you want the whole family to actually be able to take time to focus on the birthday kid!

    And don’t sweat it, Amy– we can all be insensitive idiots now and then. A few high school courses in basic reading comprehension, a crash course in etiquette and you’ll be passing for a mannerly human being in no time!

  30. Jessica says:

    Happy birthday Miles! We wait till my husband is off work too! Especially since my son’s birthday is two days after Christmas.

  31. Joy H says:

    Sounds like somebody forgot Amy’s birthday for real at some point and she is bitter! @@

    If you read this blog AT ALL, you will see that the day BEFORE she posted a preggo pic. in rememberance also. Egads!

    Happy Birthday Miles, sweet boy!

  32. Shari says:

    Happy Birthday to an absolutely adorable three year old!

  33. wookie says:

    We celebrate on the weekend, but let the birthday kid have a special birthday treat (cookie, cupcake, whatever is actually around) on their birthday. It’s not just your family.

  34. wookie says:

    For BREAKFAST on their birthday, sorry, I should have clarified.

  35. Sharon says:

    Amy, really. Was the comment needed? She just posted a picture of her big belly three years ago. I’m with Chris, I thought people celebrate with a party on the weekend when other people can be there, LIKE DAD.

  36. Cheryl says:

    Happy birthday, sweet Miles!

    And Chris - you definitely do one thing “really great”!!!! You are the most caring, connected mother - I am in awe! That is the most important job there is - and you definitely have a talent. Some days you may not feel like that - but trust me, you have it nailed!!

  37. Dawn says:

    He is too cute. At least he will have these blogs to remember the life he is soon to forget. I cannot even manage to keep up on a blog, baby book, or scrapbook and I only have two children. So, in my book, you rock. And, no, you did not need to explain yourself.

  38. MamaGeph says:

    First of all, I only have three, and I did almost forget my bab’ys first birthday last weekend. We picked out a present for her the morning of. So, Chris, I figure you deserve a medal for not only raising SEVEN, but also for keeping things running like you do.

    Second, what is up with moms getting all judgy with each other? Don’t we get enough of that from the rest of the world?

  39. peepnroosmom says:

    Happy Birthday, big Guy!

  40. All Adither says:

    You have a three year old AND a four year old? Good grief, you must’ve had a hard couple of years there.

  41. Karen says:

    Happy Birthday, Baseball Guy!!! Love you. And yes, birthday’s are much more fun on the week-end when everyone has time to enjoy. As a matter of fact, my daughter’s 24th birthday will be on the 22nd of this month and as she grew and learned of the importance of her birthday, she likes to declare a Birthday MONTH!

  42. Sara says:

    Happy day Miles. Oh, what the heck, live big right? Hope three is one of your best, buddy.
    And Chris? You sure create beautiful children.

  43. Lauren says:

    She did not “forget” it. In my childhood, I loved how birthday celebrations stretched out, how there wasn’t just one night, one cake, how we got to celebrate over the weekend instead of smushing it into the crush of the week.
    Happiest of happies to Miles to all of you. I hope your cake was free of spit.
    “Psh, now maybe if his birthday was a blog post you wouldn’t forget that.”
    What does that even mean????? FLAME USING LOGIC, WOMAN.

  44. Thumper says:

    Happy birthday to the little guy!

    We always celebrate when everyone can, too. It’s just more fun when there’s more family and friends around.

  45. Mommy mommy says:

    Happy Birthday Miles!! He is by far my favorite 3 year old in the blogging world ( well besides mine, anyways!!!)

    And get the Big cake, someone will always eat it right?

  46. Lizzy in the Burbs says:

    Happy Birthday to Miles the Birthday Boy! Chris, you can only balance so many plates in the air at one time, I think you do a fine job!

  47. Heather's Garden says:

    Don’t let one dork get you down, Chris. Hey, I’m 33 and I get a birthday week. Sometimes the actual day of is just not that convenient for celebrating. Why not stretch it out to a whole week of small things in your honor?

    And yes, I do 20 things half-assed at the same time constantly, it’s called multi-tasking and it’s a highly sought after job skill! It’s hard being a perfectionist, but I still remember the meeting my 1st grade teacher had with my parents. Every child had a folder of work, one side was completed projects and the other was uncompleted projects. All of the work in my folder was precisely colored in, the right colors, inside the lines, no errors, but not a single piece was on the completed side. When I find myself obsessing over every tiny detail of a project or spending way too much time on a simple task I think back to that folder and do what I have to do to get it to the completed side.

    That’s not at all the same thing as keeping up with the day-to-day tasks of caring for your family, but maybe you’ll find something helpful there, providing there is anything at all worth reading in what I wrote, lol.

  48. Kate says:

    happy happy birthday mistah cinnamon buns! :)

  49. Lin says:

    Aw. Happy birthday, Miles. :)

    And Chris, you know what they say:
    “Mediocrity always attacks excellence.”

    From what I can tell, you’re doing an excellent job. As a parent. As a writer. And your blog is excellent too. For most of us that excellence is an inspiration. For a few, it wakes up a little green monster called envy. That’s their problem.

    You don’t have to explain yourself for anyone. You really don’t.

    Have a great weekend. :)

  50. kate says:

    I still can not believe he is three. I always hated when people say I remember when he was born but gah it is so true!

    I remember three years ago reading about your 7th miracle!

    Happy Birthday Miles!

    And wow people are really obnoxious. I am truly thinking about going to a secluded island for a year I just posted about it.

  51. Kate says:

    Happy Birthday Miles, Chris thanks so much for sharing your sweet little guy with us, Hope he has a wonderful year

  52. Carolynn from Western Australia says:

    Happy Birthday to you Miles All the way from Western Australia.

    Ask Mummy nicely to show you where it is on the map of the world when she is not too snowed under.

    Lots of Loves Hugs and Kisses Carolynn xxxx :-)

  53. Ginny says:

    I was gonna say something about the insulting comment, but you all kicked her ass pretty well! Kudos! Happy birthday to dear Miles! And many more!

  54. Carolyn says:

    Not even a real smile and there’s more than a hint of a crater. *swoon*.

    Marry Me Miles. I’ll ditch the husband and 4 kids somewhere.

    That’ll make you my MIL. You DO drink wine yes???

  55. LammyAnn says:

    I person could die in those things.
    Happy birdy Milesy!

  56. Deputy's Wife says:

    Happy Birthday Miles!

    People make stupid rude comments usually when they feel inferior or are insecure with their own selves.

    You keep doing what works for you and your family. And keep posting about it. I am sure what is most important, is that Miles felt special on his day thanks to his loving family. (A loving family headed by a wonderful mom.)

    I don’t comment much on here, but I wanted you to know that I love your blog. Take care, and have a Merry Christmas.

  57. Sarcastic Mom says:

    Happy Birthday to Miles!
    That was the best big sister birthday card ever. *giggle*

    That kid’s so handsome. :-)

  58. try again says:

    I want to say Happy Birthday to Miles also! And ask a little more about the homeschooling thing….I have a 4, 3, and 1 1/2 yr old and want to homeschool, but am overwhelmed with how to start. Any suggestions?
    Thank you.

  59. sandy says:

    Some people just know how to ruin the celebration with one snarky comment. You’re an awesome mom, Chris. Staying at home with one or two kids is difficult enough. You’re doing that with 7 kids, plus the homeschooling thing. You are a saint, i say.

  60. Elissa says:

    Happy Birthday Miles!!!! Chris, your family is so amazingly beautiful!!!! Thank you for sharing your blog with us!!! I have two questions: with the 9 people in your family, how many months in the year have a birthday in it for your family? Are any of them really close in dates? My brother and sister are 1 year and 364 days apart and they’ve always had to share celebrations…..

  61. Amy#2 says:

    First, off, I am a different Amy but my son’s fourth birthday was on the 11th and the poor kid isn’t getting his party until Dec. 30th. I didn’t even know until I read the update on your blog that it was some sort of crime to not have the party on the actual day. Anyway, Miles is a beautiful kid, as all of your children are!

  62. Rocks In My Dryer says:

    Don’t let those naysayers get you down. You’re doing an excellent job.

  63. kelly says:

    I have a December birthday as well (two days after, and 40 years before Miles’), so I know (as Miles will know someday too) that having your birthday right in the midst of pre-Christmas shopping/wrapping frenzy, and all the parties, and possibly bad weather (they’re calling for 3-7″ for my b-day) just adds to the craziness of the season and it just something that comes with the territory of being born when we were.

    My family and friends have always kept it separate for me, and have found time in their busy schedules to celebrate with me. The celebrations usually last into January, but that’s fine with me.

    I do joke though that I would like to have a 1/2 birthday on June 15th. No snow or Christmas craziness to contend with.

    Oh, and I have 4 nieces ranging in age from 2 to 11, none of whom were born in December. We celebrate their birthdays when the majority of us can attend the party, and also when it fits into their schedule…during the weekend. Rarely do they have their real party the day of their birthday.

    Happy 3rd Birthday, Miles!!!

  64. CaliforniaGrammy says:

    So . . . did he pass the “spit or cough” test?

    Happy Birthday sweetie pie three-year-old Miles!

  65. Clare says:

    Happy Birthday Miles!!!!
    Chris, no you do not need to explain anything to anyone! You are wonderful, dedicated mother doing her best, like we all are.
    And as someone else said don’t we mothers get enough grief from the rest of the world?

  66. Mary W says:

    Here’s a swift kick to amy and some birthday hugs to Miles :-)

    You mean birthdays aren’t supposed to last a week?

    we do cupcakes for the class and lucn with the birthday kid then we do the family celebration and then , the weekend after the friends party

  67. carrie says:

    Happy Birthday Miles! And look! A blizzard in your honor and everything!

  68. Jennifer says:

    Happy belated birthday Miles!

    Re. the question whether it is better to do a bunch of things half-assed or one thing really well, you do not give yourself enough credit. You do the big things well.

  69. Juju says:

    Happy Birthday Miles :-) Such a cute face deserves the biggest cake in the shop! Love the message from his sister too.

  70. Beth says:

    I love your daughter’s birthday message, and I’m totally writing that in all future birthday cards. ;^) Happy birthday to your big three-year-old! :-)

  71. Cary says:

    Mothers unite!!! My birthday was yesterday, and it would have been complete if only I had gotten that card. She is a girl with brothers, and has already learned the need and importance of stating the obvious. She and they will do well.

  72. Keri says:

    Those dimples are to die for. (Not to mention his wittle cinnamon buns!) Happy Birthday Miles. He looks so proud of himself as his brothers & sister are singing to him.

  73. OMSH says:

    Kenny’s birthday is the 21st. His birthday is scheduled for January 5th. As Chris recognizes the weekdays are not usually days to throw big shindigs.

    Geez, blogging COMMUNITY indeedy.

  74. Deborah says:

    I am not sure what I enjoy more, your blog, or the comments people write.
    Happy Happy Birthday Miles, you cutie.

  75. BritBrit says:

    Chris, I’ve been popping in to visit your site for nearly a year now, and
    I love what you write and all your great photos. I especially love knowing that you homeschool, since I just started homeschooling my 5 year old this fall.
    You are an inspiration, and all you have to do is look at those beautiful children of yours to know you do MANY things REALLY well.
    Love, Blessings and Happy Christmas to you and your family.

  76. Renee says:

    My youngest of seven children is 3, also. I am about 6 months in ahead of you in this game of watching your youngest grow up and loving it and being sad simultaneously.

    We have a picture of our little one sitting behind a donut with a candle in it. A Krispy Kreme to be exact.

    Many blessing to Miles and to you, Chris, from one mother to another.

  77. josy says:

    chris, you posed as ‘amy’ and wrote that yourself so you’d get extra comments and affirmations, didn’t you? ;)
    kidding. all the best to you and all your little people.

  78. Melissa says:

    Ohhh, he’s so cute! Happy Birthday Miles!

  79. Ashley says:

    I think Amy #1 is just jealous, so she has to make rude comments to try and get you upset. Phooey on her..

    I love the b-day card, very cute.

  80. Adrienne says:

    Happy birthday to the little man!

    (My son’s birthday is the day after Christmas. He didn’t actually have a birthday cake on the big day until his SEVENTH birthday, and that was because my stepsister felt terribly sorry for him. So far, he does not seem to be scarred for life, and he also seems to enjoy celebrating his birthday with his friends and family after the first of the year, when people can actually stop saying Merry Christmas long enough to say Happy Birthday and wrap his presents in birthday paper instead of Christmas wrap….)

  81. Rachel says:

    Awww! So cute! Mine will be 3 on Christmas Eve- you better believe that we don’t necessarily do all of the celebrating on his actual birthday- I think that would just be way too much stimulation for a 3 yr old.

  82. arduous says:

    happy birthday!

  83. Lori says:

    I agree with Deborah. I’m not sure if I love the blog or the comments more.

    I think you have done an amazing job juggling 7 little ones. I think you could join the circus!

  84. shortmamaof2 says:

    miles is cutie & has made me laugh out loud too many times to count. i also luv his sister’s card. priceless!

    happy birthday buddy!

    *hugs* as if we don’t have enough to worry about, nevermind that comment. i should think we need support, not criticism here. but that’s just me…

  85. Katie says:

    I have been reading your blog for two years now, Chris, and I will say that you inspire me to be a better mother. You seem to have a family filled with love and happiness. And good humor. Which is what MORE people in their lives, it seems.

    Kudos to you and Happy Birthday Miles!!!!!!

  86. HamIam says:

    Happy Birthday Miles (ooh, I’m late…does that make me a bad person too?)

    Can’t believe Amy#1 but ah well, you handled it very well.

    And your daughter’s card? Spot-on…she’s asserting her wishes very well :)

  87. Maddy says:

    Well BOO to you Amy, psh….

    Chris WE all know you love and adore ALL of your children, which is why you have thousands of readers who come to hear about your brilliant family life each and every day. It’s your blog so exercise your blogging rights and push DELETE!

    Have a wonderful Christmas and enjoy every crazy minute.

  88. BJ says:

    Firstly, he’s so cute!!! Could I borrow him? He’d fit right in with my passle o’ cuteness. We have dimpled chins around here, so we need some dimpled cheekies to even it out!

    Secondly, I think I kind of glazed over at Amy’s comment. I’m telling myself *I* read wrong. Is she for real? You’re awesome! We hardly ever celebrate on the actual b-day. Because life usually interferes with the timing. Oh, wait. Maybe it’s just because I don’t have it together, and I keep forgetting about the babies that I delivered and nursed and am raising and schooling…..

    Love your blog!

    Did he manage not to spit?

  89. Jolyn says:

    HOLY COW! What a soap opera!
    My littlest guy just turned three as well, AND I have a four-year-old, too. And YES it was a hard couple of years there. And I’m even missing four of the other five…

  90. Rae says:

    I’m a little late but HAPPY BIRTHDAY MILES! I can’t believe he’s three. Wow- time flies. I was reading someone’s comment about how you must have had a hard time for a while since you have a three and a four year old, and laughing a little, because weren’t the first four really really close together? Oh, I am always amazed by you, Chris. I come here all the time just for encouragement on how to make life more fun for my kids, because it seems that life at your house rocks!

  91. Tara says:

    Your daughter’s letter is so cute. I absolutely love this picture. I wish I had half the photography skills you do. :-)

    Oh, and Happy (late) Birthday to your son.

  92. Tania says:

    Chris, once again you crystallised the enigma that is my life into a sentence or two:

    “Is it better to do lots of things half-assed, or one thing really great while blowing off all of the others? This is the question of my life.”

    Happy Birthday to Miles - your letters to your children inspired me when I first started reading your blog and now I do one for my kids for their birthdays too.

    And Amy one of my favourite quotes is ‘When you judge another, you do not define them, you define yourself.’

    Tania in Australia