Family Magazine

Happy Birthday, Joseph!

By Sherwoods

Happy Birthday, Joseph!

This week Joseph turned ten years old.  When Kathleen turned ten years old, it was such an unimaginably ancient age that I hardly knew what to do with myself.  With two adult-sized children in the house, ten is less of an advanced age, but for Joseph ten is still a big milestone.

We celebrated his birthday with a day off from school.  Everyone loves this family tradition, and almost every child has their birthday during the school year, so we get to have a lot of birthday holidays.  According to Eleanor, the best part of being homeschooled is that you get to have school off on your birthday.  The children ended up watching two movies during the day because we decided to home.  Even as an adult, watching a movie in the middle of the day still feels like the height of luxury.  

Happy Birthday, Joseph!

In addition to picking both movies, Joseph got to pick the breakfast (aebelskivers), his cake (lemon tart), and dinner (sushi).  With so many people in the family who have so many different opinions, a birthday is a special day when the birthday child gets to make all the choices without having to take turns with anyone else.  

The best part of Joseph's day was, of course, his presents.  This year some of his siblings gave him presents, so he was a very happy boy with five presents to open.  All but one were LEGO sets, adding to the number of possible caltrops that can be scattered across every imaginable place in the house.  As soon as the tart was shoveled into their mouths, Joseph and Edwin sprinted upstairs to start building their new treasures.  I'm not sure what I'm going to do for presents when they finally grow out of LEGOs.  

Happy Birthday, Joseph!

For Joseph's birthday Saturday, we went to the circus.  The "Russian" ('more like Kazakh' was Edwin's verdict after noting the ethnicity of the performers) circus was in town, so we decided to join in with crowds of Uzbek children and their parents for an afternoon of entertaining acts.  This was our third trip to a Soviet-era circus building, having gone to the Baku and Dushanbe circuses also.  We were happy to see that Nur-Sultan also has a circus, although it was built after the Soviet era.  

Happy Birthday, Joseph!

Watching acrobats perform breathtaking feats of strength, balance, and agility never gets old, and everyone enjoyed seeing what amazing stunt would be next.  We got to watch tightrope walkers, jugglers, a bear, acrobatic archers, funny acts, and someone jumping rope on the back of a cantering horse.  Nobody was bored.

Happy Birthday, Joseph!

We are all happy to have Joseph as part of our family.  He is irrepressibly cheerful and can usually be found with a wide grin on his face as he finds a new joke to tell or a funny story to relate.  I can always count on Joseph to help out with whatever I ask him to do, and he always wants to make sure that his siblings are taken care of.  I'm quite interested to see what Joseph will find to pour his interest into as he grows older.  But for now, we'll enjoy him as the newest decade-old child in our house.  Happy birthday, Joseph!

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