Friday, January 14, 2011

The Get Smart Birthday

If you haven't received an email from me in the last 2 weeks, or we're not best (facebook) friends, or you've been hiding under a rock, then you might not have known that today is my birthday. I turned 29 today. And in the Mullen home, that means we kick things off with letter pancakes in a birthday tent.

Marielle & Jenna got me an artisan pancake set. Goodbye boring circles; hello guitars, TVs and stick-women.

MK's new suspended-from-the-ceiling tent design collapsed when the HUD inspector showed up, so we reverted to our standard stretch-the-blue-blanket-between-chairs model.

Even Rex got a D pancake for breakfast. Don't worry: he didn't eat it. Probably because we wouldn't pour him any syrup to go with.

Rex's first chance to be a Boy of Rock n' Roll in our Chipmunks-soundtracked Rock Off. Marielle maintains the Girls still won, despite my extra help.

Apparently, my family thinks I'm falling behind the curve in school, so after breakfast, MK scheduled our day into 8 study activities. Each was designed for me to get smart.

ACTIVITY 1: Study the Alphabet. Marielle & I went to her Letter School this morning. The letter of the day was I, so she brought "an infanent" for show & tell. Also, Me announced to the class: "I had a baby this week!"

Marielle, in her self-declared superhero outfit, her "infanent" & I. Me told me I got more power today since I'm 23. Also, kid superheros don't need sunglasses.

ACTIVITY 2: Study Nature. MK dug up magnifying glasses at the...wait for it...swap shop! So we went to the monarch butterfly preserve nearby to view nature at a whole new level.

"This tree was murdered."

I know this picture only shows 4, but we saw thousands of butterflies. Aunt Julia would have been terrified.

ACTIVITY 3: Study your Love. MK gave me a scrapbook updated with all the keepsakes Shula saved from my childhood. I now know that:
  1. my mother Sherry (?) delivered me in rm. 420
  2. in 1991 I found my Easter basket first. Guess who was last?
  3. I did a book report in 4th grade on a Where's Waldo? book. MK's reaction: "There's like one line of text per page?!"

A photograph quality drawing depicting a real life event. That's me in green, approximately 1.4 seconds before I hit the concrete and broke my arm. My narrative on the back states that mom "rushed me to the hospital," though I distinctly remember her making me sleep it out on the couch to see if it was really broken.

ACTIVITY 4: Study the Menu. MK's extended family joined us for dinner at the Palace Grill, my favorite restaurant from our stay-cation (pronounced "KAY-shun", not "CAT-eye-on" for you science nerds out there).

Rex Leonis. That's Latin for The Lion King. Think Simba's presentation to the animal herds.

Jenna was in a great mood.

Five, not four, Mullens.

ACTIVITY 5: Study at the Library. We only made it as far as the parking garage. The garage has a circular ramp we've dubbed "The Whirly Twirly." We like to coast down all 4 floors without using our car brakes. Wheeeeee! Today, we took it to a new level by piling 10 people in Jackie O, our minivan. Aunt Apple got carsick after the 2nd run (of 4).

Unrelated video.

ACTIVITY 6: Study an Experiment. We used vinegar and baking soda to inflate our party decorations, because really, who wants to put their lips all over a balloon.

I love the wonder on Marielle's face.

ACTIVITY 7: Study deliciousness. The once-a-year not-from-a-mix Oreo Cheesecake. I'd eat one of these a week if I could.

I needed help. My formerly asthmatic lungs aren't up to the task.

ACTIVITY 8: Study your presents.
I opened this present and held it up for the crowd to gawk with envy.
In response to the confused looks I got instead, MK stated "It's what he wanted."
Grandma Sycamore: "Is that from another church?"
Justin: "Yes, it's the great and abominable edition."

Thank you to my wife & kids for making my much-touted birthday as memorable, and educating, as I hoped it would be. I can already tell that this year: Me Enjoy kNowing Smart Answers.


Jeannie said...

Happy Birthday! You sure know how to party.

Nick Jen and Spencer said...

Happy birthday to you and your son! He looks precious, and well, you're just getting older! We wish you both well.