Today, our youngest turned four. We set a record high temperature of 69 degrees today. Four years ago in Iowa we were driving through our first, light snowfall. A few hours later dear friends from church brought Anders to the hospital to meet his new brother. We were in the midst of being unemployed and looking for work. A few months later (after a couple heavy blizzards), we found ourselves moving to Canada. But Nils really only remembers Minnesota as his home. Before going to bed tonight (as has somewhat become a tradition), we pulled out Nils' baby book and enjoyed looking back.
We celebrated his birthday today by going to the Mall of America to take advantage of Nickelodeon Universe's free birthday wristband. It was his first real time in a theme park. He loved riding on most of the rides (the haunted house was too scary, even though they provided guns to shoot the ghosts, and the log ride was too much of a drop and too wet). He was also given a coupon book which provided a free cookie and ice cream cone later. We ran across the road to Ikea to have the birthday meal Nils asked for: a hot dog. He got to play mini golf for free--which he was really wanting to do. And we even saw Santa Claus (he was there for a photo shoot on one of the rides).
I get to spend almost every day with my son, but it was fun to get to watch him enjoy a new experience. It was fun just to celebrate. Sometimes he may test my patience, and sometimes I get upset when I keep stepping on toys that don't get picked up, but I love the kid. Thanks for the past four years, Nils. I love you.