Jacob’s 16th birthday

Oh my friends, I became a mother for the first time sixteen years ago today.

Jacob was such a beautiful baby boy.  I remember that I was overwhelmed when Rich wheeled him in his little crib, into the room to me after his first bath.  He picked him up and put him into my arms, and that was the moment when the motherly love hit me full force and I knew there was nothing like that feeling.  It was one of the most treasured gifts from God, the love I felt as a held a warm, sleepy-heavy newborn baby boy.  My firstborn son, born a week after Christmas, on New Years Eve.  I was 20 years old.




Jacob decided on chocolate cake this year.  I invited him to make it with me but he politely declined.  Little Seth ran over with happy eyes and said HE would help me!  and so with Sarah, I had two little helpers.  They even put aprons on.  Rich gave me a new mixer for Christmas, and when we realized it was the same size as my old one, we returned it and bought this red beauty.  It has a seven quart bowl with enough room to mix 14 dozen cookies.


Jacob sat with his sister at the table to work on his art.  He has a collection of Sharpies and colored pencils that he uses, along with a calligraphy set.  He enjoys drawing and lettering.  Grace joins him often, and draws in her sketchbook, too

When Ethan returned from basketball practice, Jacob opened his birthday gifts to an admiring crowd of siblings.

He was given a leather journal, a set of speakers, and new sneakers.  He had been hinting for them one day when he was out shopping with Rich, which is why he smiled like this at his Dad.  He understood why he was told “no” on that day…….

After he opened gifts, we went out shopping for party food.  Shrimp, sandwiches, chips and dip, and soda.

I was able to use my new fiesta chip and dip set, from my husband.

Jacob and Rich

In this next picture, their smiles are so wonderful because they are being stinkers (I was trying to get in the picture and they stood in front of me!!)

You can just barely see the top of my head.

With our firstborn.

Grace and I took pictures of each other, and practiced different expressions; trying to avoid the big bright standard smiles.

I went to bed for a nap.  Then, all of a sudden, David and Caleb came in the room to talk.  They had been outside, sled riding.

“Dave!  What happened to your nose?”  (it was redder in real life, the flash smoothed out the redness)

“It was a snow plow and my face was the snow plow!”

“But I was the first one to get a BLOODY CUT!”  ~Caleb

His face was cold and damp from the snow.  He told me that on his way down the big hill, he went through a pricker patch and a pricker took his glove right off his hand and cut his finger.

He was so proud of his bloody cut that he refused to put a band aid on it, so he could keep looking at it.

After that interesting news, I took my nap.  It was so cozy and warm under the covers.  heart

Seth woke me up after a while and we had an early dinner.

Then, the boys (all five) went outside to play in the snow.  It was dark out, but not as cold, and they had so much fun.

This is Ethan and Dave, with their snowboards.  I stood out on the porch to watch and cheer them on.

When they came in, we cleared the table and had birthday cake.

Happy 16th birthday, Jacob!

I love you.


“The Mother of Boys”

Praise to the High One for giving me joys
Peculiarly sweet, I’m the mother of boys!
Mud puddles, torn blue jeans, toads, whistles and worms.
The furred and feathered and whatever squirms.

Black knuckles, bats, arrows and thundering noise.
They’re all in a day for the mothers of boys.
But, ah, ’tis a dear joy to turn the blue eyes
To the manifold wonder of earth, sea and skies.

And, ah, ’tis a dear joy to watch a small hand seize
The hand of God in the knowledge of these.
Spare me, oh High One, to praise Thee more when
This mother of boys is the mother of men.

~ written by Miriam Sieber Lind, mother of six sons and one daughter ~


18 thoughts on “Jacob’s 16th birthday

  1. A Happy, Happy Birthday to Jacob. He is so grown up. When I first started reading your blog..you had a bunch of little kids! When I first started blogging I had a bunch of little kids too. =/ They grow up so, so fast.All of your pictures are so beautiful. You have such a wonderful family.Happy New Year to you!!!

  2. I like the poem. I remember when I took my oldest grandson and my youngest daughter sledding on a hill near our house. He went through some weeds that were icy and they cut his face. I had to take him to the doctor’s for stitches. I felt so awful! These are beautiful family pictures. Happy New Year to all of you.

  3. hi shanda…….what a fun birthday celebration for jacob!  is that some kind of vintage necklace you’re wearing?  it’s fabulous!!  and i love the fiesta chip and dip bowl, too.

  4. How I love the poem at the end substituted with brown eyes for my family:):):)Beautiful pictures. So much love shared in this post. My favorite on is the adoring siblings one. Sarah looks so excited for her big brother. And how true that after a certain age they decline the good ol baking time with mommy but blessed we are to still have little ones who will joyously fill in for our grown sons. I sometimes wonder how it will be for me when I noonger have little ones. That’s a teary eyed thought. … Even though the days now are so long and tiring.16 is such a big age. Happy birthday to your young man!

  5. This is a late comment, but maybe you will see it. I enjoyed the poem “The Mother of Boys” that you included, and in fact am well acquainted with the poet, as she was my mother: Miriam Sieber Lind. My mother had 6 sons and one daughter, which provided her with much writing material! The poem was written back in the 1950s. She died about 4 years ago. Thought you might be interested….

    • Hi Matthew, what a delight to receive your note here. I am going to edit the post to include your dear Mother’s name. I don’t remember where I got this poem, but my husband I have five sons and two daughters. As you can imagine the poem touched my heart— it’s amazing to have a bunch of boys to raise, all five of my sons are so very precious to me. And I know (from the poem) you boys were a pride and joy to your mom, too. So wonderful to hear from you. Thank you.

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