Ever since school got out, I’ve been worried about Blakely and Kirra, who were spending abnormal amounts of time alone in their rooms. As good mothers do, I pried and found out they were each planning covert and complex birthday gifts for Ruth.

Blakely was crocheting a large penguin with super soft yarn and Kirra was creating a Monopoly game based on Ruth’s life! Ruth-opoly! They were also collecting 16 letters from people who know and love Ruth and shopping for 16 gifts. Kirra loves planning theme parties. One of those letters was from her dad and led to lots of tears this morning. It was just a few snippets from emails he had written me about her but they were so special to her. This one was so sweet:

Mom: The kids went all out on nerd day.
Dad: Ruth’s is not as nerdy. We need to build her confidence. She is so sweet. She needs to know how awesome she is. We could recruit the other kids to help as well. They all love her. We need to do something special for her since she never asks for anything.

I love that the kids all have done exactly what dad wanted in building Ruth’s confidence over the years. Hopefully she does know how awesome she is. Lately she has been lifting weights and has gotten super strong. She reminded me of Amos before but now it’s uncanny in her physical appearance too. He was always in such great shape before he had to start taking all kinds of meds.

I noticed that both Kirra and Blakely included Penguins in their gifts. This goes back to when we went to Sea World as a family just before dad got really sick. They took care of us at Sea World because they knew Amos had terminal cancer and this would likely be our last family vacation together. We got to go behind the scenes and help feed the animals and meet them up close. Ruth had a special connection with a penguin that latched on to her. She has a special gift with animals just like her aunt Phoebe does and she has loved penguins ever since.

Ruth is so different from the other girls but they all get along so well. She has no desire to drive. I have a feeling my 14-year-old Blakely will get her license first, but today Ruth agreed to at least start learning to drive. Kirra will be an adult this year so I’ll need a replacement driver. 😉

Billye loves her Aunt Ruthie who also has a way with babies.