(Why 66? Oh, just a, um, random number...)
1. She used to feed and care for me when I couldn't.
2. She cared for my grandmother (her mother) when she couldn't care for herself.
3. She is a good friend to many.
4. She has generations of past school students who remember her as one of their favorite teachers.
5. She comes to see my clean house and must remember the pile that was my teenage bedroom...
6. She worked really hard while I was in college so that I wouldn't have any student loans.
7. She always stays in the Word. No matter what.
8. She brings beautiful music into people's lives.
9. She loves a good joke. And laughs politely at the dumb ones.
10. She taught me how to skin and debone a chicken. A skill I've never used, but at least I know how!
11. She taught me how to drive a stick shift... AND not roll back when stopped on a hill! A skill I needed when I drove in France last year.
12. She can say "Cyn-thi-a!" in a tone that no one else can.
13. She can accomplish much with one raised eyebrow. Move over, Yoda.
14. She has never met a dog she didn't love.
15. She sews better than anyone I know.
16. She can make gravy with anything, and taught me the "ways of the force" in this area.
17. She'll try anything once.
18. She has a heart for mission work.
19. She has scrapbooked every. single. picture. she owns.
20. She thinks every woman she meets is "just the cutest thing you've ever seen!"
21. She thinks her church is "just the sweetest bunch of people you've ever known!"
22. She's not afraid of hard work.
23. She made all my (CUTE!) maternity clothes in an era when all of the maternity clothes had sailor collars and big bows. I had women stop me and ask where my clothes were from.
24. She is convinced that all her grandchildren are gifted and talented. Really. They are.
25. She is convinced that my brother and I are gifted and talented. Really. We are.
26. She is shocked at some of the things my brother and I tell her we did when we were little. Like, I think she thought we were nice.
27. She faithfully endured years of dinner table conversations about bodily functions. ("Every time we sit at the table, it degenerates into this!")
28. She has adopted some of my grandmother's sayings. "Oh, law!"
29. When she sees homeschooling moms out and about, she stops them and tells them what a wonderful thing they are doing.
30. She shops 'til she drops, then she crawls.
31. She believes in daily naptime. I didn't appreciate this as a child, but now I see the beauty of it!
32. She has watched "As the World Turns" since the world actually started turning.
33. She can make a devotional out of anything. A rock. A tree. A pipecleaner. Dryer lint.
34. She has no greater joy than to hear that her children walk in the truth. (III John 4)
35. She can play anything on the piano. While making a row of 5th grade boys behave.
36. She never made us eat liver or lima beans, even when she made them for Dad.
37. She cheers the loudest at games of any kind, any team, anywhere.
38. She laughs with those who laugh.
39. She weeps with those who weep.
40. Whatever emotion you're going through, I guarantee you she understands.
41. She sets specific goals and achieves them.
42. She loves her big brothers so much, just saying their names makes her cry.
43. She's married to her best friend.
44. You can hear her a mile away at a theme park. ("Yep, that's mom on the log ride...")
45. She taught me how to, um, take care of restroom needs on a steep incline on the side of a mountain. (Oh, those Colorado summers... And, yey for hiking boots.)
46. She told me I was pretty even when I wasn't.
47. She told me I was good at math even when I wasn't.
48. When I finally was relatively pretty and good at math, she said, "See? I told you so!"
49. She says "You can always do more than you think you can."
50. She also says that if you say "I can't" you must follow it with the word "yet."
51. She feels that chocolate cake is a perfectly healthy breakfast, as long as you have milk with it.
52. No matter what it is, if she has it and you need it, she'll give it to you.
53. She has sung the showstopper in musicals and waiting for the applause to die down did stop the show momentarily!
54. She makes a church lady face when she sings solos in church and she's not afraid to own that fact.
55. She sat in the ICU waiting room for days with my dear (young, scared) husband when I had heart surgery.
56. She endured years of a very realistic fake spider ("Spidey") being placed strategically on her pillow, in her underwear drawer, etc. when she would least expect it. I can still hear the shrieks. Her poor heart.
57. She always helped me decorate my dorm rooms and apartments so they were just the cutest. For nine months. Until it was time to take it down and move it somewhere else. Year after year.
58. She knows every hymn ever written.
59. All four stanzas. (None of this skip-stanza-3 business.)
60. She accompanied me for UIL competition when her piano part was much harder than my french horn part, and then jumped up and down for MY "one" rating.
61. She would do cartwheels in the yard for my good grades in elementary school.
62. She loves her son-in-law and daughter-in-law like they were her own children. Maybe even more... ;)
63. She's artistic.
64. She's computer-savvy.
65. She is a living testament to those immortal words, "What separates us from the animals is our ability to accessorize."
66. She knows that His eye is on the sparrow, and she knows He watches her.
I know God is watching her with love and rejoicing over her with singing today.
Happy birthday, Mom!