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My special day

According to tradition in my family, when it's my birthday (notice I don't say when it's anyone elses birthday), no one can refuse my request. My one request? That my children come with me and sit for this picture.


Well, this one was taken with my cell phone camera. The real one is coming in the next week or so. I've had them taken each and every year since 1989.

That means this girl on the right has been photographed with that jolly man in red every year for 19 years.


The Boy? Every year since 1991.


These two? Every year since 1996 and 1998 resepectively.


I have all the years of Santa pictures in a large frame with beautiful matting. I've filled an entire one up and am three pictures deep into the next one. I hang them up each Christmas and then spend a few moments marveling at the march of time across the faces and bodies of my children. It brings home to me how much has changed---but one thing hasn't and won't ever change. My love for them.

After the Santa picture, we engaged in another family ritual: The purchasing of Christmas ornanments. Each year after the picture, the kids get to pick out one ornament. We hang all the ornaments on the tree each year and when it comes time for them to leave and have families and trees of their own, their personal ornaments will go with them. Ally picked the 2008 Barbie, Ash picked a Hannah Montanna ornament and Chris and Steph each picked snowflakes. We bought the kids gyros and then dropped them off at home and then Lance and I had some alone time.

We drove to the International District, picked up some Japanese food then took it to Highland Park on Queen Anne overlooking the Space Needle. My cell phone doesn't take a great picture in the dark---and it was breathtaking in person---but you get the picture. Sort of.


We watched ferries, all lit up and sliding across the blackness of Puget Sound. Lance sat behind me with his arms around me as we remembered coming there when we first began dating oh-so-many-years ago.

All in special day was a good one.


  1. "All lit up". You or the ferries? I thought I admonished you to be sober this year?

  2. Did I say happy birthday? I can't remember. I'm sure I must have.

  3. Ahhhh....
    Seattle is a beautiful place, filled with beautiful people like you and your family. I LOVE you guys and miss you all!

    Happy birthday!

  4. Oh Satako, we miss you tooooooo! It's not the same without your pretty smile and your laughter. Please keep in touch and come back to visit if you can!

  5. Vicus, being all lit up is fun! You should try it sometime.

    Oh wait....I think I've seen pictures of you and Tommy all lit up in the 60's. ::grin::

    Dave, yes, I believe you wished me a happy birthday on facebook, but I'll take the second one too! :)

  6. what a perfect day!
    happy birthday pam.
    i love those pics you took of your gorgeous kiddos.
    and we're going saturday to do our santa pics for the 15th year. yikes!

  7. I love those traditions for your birthday! A great way to focus on your family while getting what you want and marveling at your legacy!!! But, no fair, making me miss Seattle even, I need a trip!!!

  8. Thanks Kelly! Wow...fifteen years of pics. Where does the time go?

    Rebecca, you DO need a trip. Although I have no room to put you up when you come this time! :( We're kinda sorta cramped right now. But come!


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