Give thanksHow thankful I am that I still have my mom here on earth. And though we don’t get to see her NEARLY enough, we treasure the moments that we DO get with her. Today is her birthday. She’s in Ohio. We’re in Ukraine. Oh, how we’d love to be celebrating with her.

But LAST year we were in the states for one week — medical appointments — and we chose to be there over Thanksgiving and her birthday. And were able to make her day super special for everyone around. We took her to the Cincinnati Zoo so she could see the baby giraffe…such a sweet moment. An added bonus was that she was able to see her grandson Milan see a real live penguin for the very first time. He was sooo excited — every person that came anywhere near the exhibition had Milan point out the penguins!

The birthday girlMy sister’s family met us for lunch where everyone — including the staff at the restaurant — treated her like the queen that she is.

After an afternoon rest, she woke up to find her room decorated with streamers and helium balloons. (Just like her grandsons receive on THEIR birthdays. THEIR idea for great-gramma.) And several of her caregivers at the assisted-living facility joined us for cake and presents.

This year we will be returning to the states, but not until December. Mom so wanted all of her family to be around for Christmas that she is even flying one of our daughters home from Kathmandu, Nepal! So looking forward to our first Christmas with mom since 1995!

Happy birthday, Mom! See you in a few short weeks!


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