Yes, it is official, Jared, tomorrow you can no longer talk about how you are the younger man. We are the same age! :) Welcome to our 33rd year. It's looking good so far!
Alex and Eli, Your Daddy is the baby of his family. He was born 8 years after Uncle Steven and 14 after Aunt Kimmy (I think). He was no "accident" though. He was planned and longed for just like each of you were. On a side note: when Nani told Aunt Kim that she was going to have a baby her 14 year old self replied "I'm happy the way things are!" Apparently when Jared was told that Aunt Kim was moving back home when he was a pre-teen he responded the same way! :) Anyways, he was a wild man and I'd like to share a few of his childhood stories with you.
Here are a few of my personal favorites and let me assure you there are many more.The first one your Aunt Linda tells beautifully but I will attempt to re-create it here for you. She was babysitting your Daddy like she often did. I should preface this story with the fact that Nani and Papa came home to crying babysitters on more than one occasion. Aunt Linda was one of his victims. He came in the house in the middle of summer and asked if Aunt Linda knew where his snow boots were. She asked why he would be needing them to which Daddy told her he was shooting flaming tennis ball out of a soup can. I am SERIOUS! He was a quick one. At least he was taking safety into account. :)
Another favorite of mine involves your Daddy getting a brand new expensive pair of shoes that were corrective when he was a toddler. He came into the house and Nani noticed that he was leaving white footprints everywhere. She followed his tracks to find that he had stepped into a 5 gallon bucket of paint that Papa had in the shed. He tracked through the lawn onto the porch and into the house. Thankfully, Grandma and Grandpa were there and they scrubbed those shoes until they were like new. It took hours I am told.
Why do parents torture their children like this? Poor Jared looks scared to death. :)Another time Nani looked out her kitchen window and kept seeing Daddy's head bob up and then disappear. She went outside to find him and the neighbor girl using a 10 foot ladder over the fence as a see saw.
I had to add this serious faced 6 year old Jared. In my opinion he is the perfect cross between both Alex and Eli. So cute.
I am pretty sure I shouldn't be telling you these stories because I can already hear you using them against us but it is part of life I am sure and some day I will tell my grand kids about the crazy stuff you have done so revenge will be had :)Most importantly your Dad is an amazing husband and father. You are SO blessed and I hope that he never loses that sense of adventure that he has had since a child. I hope that it passes on to each of you although I may regret that sooner rather than later! :)
So thanks to Nani and Papa for deciding to have "just one more" even though at times it felt like a dozen! :) Alex, Eli and I are forever grateful!
Uncle Steven sent this and I had to add it:
At times Jared would not revel in forced baths by his older brother, Steven. One day before the rinse cycle Bear (Jared) hops outta the tub bright pink and lathered in soap, down the stairs, out the front door and down the street in all his glory. At least this is how I remember it! Favorite memory was when he'd spend his school vacations with me at UofM around age ten. It all makes me smile. Happy Birthday, Bear! Steven