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December 31.

I’ve mentioned our tradition before.  It’s one of my favourites.  Why wait until the end of the day when you can when you can start your day with cake and presents?

What makes it even more fun now, is the joy and excitement it brings both kids.  Jaia mentioned the night before that she was looking forward to her cupcake in the morning.  I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised that she remembered, she’s been through it herself 6 other times and for each of our birthdays as well.  But nonetheless, expected or not, getting spoiled first thing in the morning sets the pace for an awesome birthday.

This year, Wes was pumped about waking and surprising his sister.

She, on the other hand, seemed a little apprehensive about little brother carrying the fire…

But birthday cupcakes are worth their weight in gold and there was no convincing necessary.

She even let little brother have a shot.  He obliged.

I love birthdays.


January 3, 2014 - 8:45 am

Carole - What an awesome tradition you have made for your kids, and what great memories they will have. 🙂 Great pics, Shan!

January 3, 2014 - 5:41 pm

Mrs. D - Great tradition Fullertons!! Happy belated birthday Jaia – 7 is an amazing age!!

January 3, 2014 - 8:20 pm

Auntie Jenny - Such an awesome tradition. Wait til she has a collage of these photos 🙂

January 10, 2014 - 11:08 am

Mark - That’s amazing. I still vividly remember bringing the original Happy New Year tiara to the hospital at 1AM shortly after her birth and feeling privileged to be one of the first visitors. Do you still have the original?

January 10, 2014 - 11:53 am

Shannen - I do, Mark! Check out all the years here:

This one.

I remember the day Jaia got stitches for a nasty gash on her forehead.  The scar has all but faded now but I had taken a really cute photo of her by the pool that afternoon and I kept thinking how that was the last photo before her face was permanently ‘changed’.

I felt the same way years earlier when I took a photo of what ended up being Jaia’s last day with a gummy smile, as her first little tooth poked through the next day.  I still treasure that captured moment.  In fact, it’s in a frame, on my wall, and I have no intentions of changing it out anytime soon.

Look at her now.  Almost seven years old and with two wiggly front teeth.  In a matter of days, weeks, or months, she will change yet again when those teeth finally fall out.  I’m doing my best to soak up every second with this wonderful face before we have to say goodbye and hello to a new, yet equally lovely one.

The days are long but the years are short.  Before I know it she’ll be starting high school or going on a first date.  Since I can’t quite wrap my head around that kind of insanity, I’ll attempt to welcome things like wiggly teeth with happy anticipation instead of sadness about quickly fading little kidhood.  I can’t make any promises though…


December 30, 2013 - 7:48 am

Mrs. D - Goodbye 6, and soon bring on the amazing wonder of 7!!
an early Happy Birthday, Miss Jaia

December 31, 2013 - 9:33 am

Ellen Martin - Happy Birthday #7 Jaia! Hugs

December 31, 2013 - 2:31 pm

Auntie Jenny - Happy 7th Birthday Jaia!!!

2013 in less than 3 minutes

Enjoy the ride.  I know I did.


December 28, 2013 - 8:49 pm

Mrs. C - Some “snippets” from a year in the lives of the Fullertons
Job well done,as usual, Shannen!!
Happy New Year

December 29, 2013 - 12:55 pm

Auntie Jenny - very cool!!

December 30, 2013 - 12:11 am

Auntie Michelle - Such an awesome job Shannen – and I always look forward to reading your forgetful blog – keep it coming!! Hi to all

At three.

The world looks different at three.  Sometimes the world is whinier and pickier at three.  And more energetic.  Holy man, the energy is boundless.  But three is also soft and sweet.  Three cuddles longer, gives wetter kisses and just plain melts me sometimes.

At Christmas dinner, we asked Wes if he wanted to do the toast.  He raised his glass and said, “Christmas is for celebrating, being happy and giving.”

No truer words have ever been spoken.  So it turns out that three is not only cuddlier and more energetic.  Three is also very, very wise.


December 27, 2013 - 3:17 pm

Mrs. D - May that thought stay with you forever, young man
Nothing but sweetness!!

December 28, 2013 - 11:59 am

Auntie Jenny - How adorable!