Tuesday, November 12, 2013


We had a birthday party this weekend.
Few in the Grasshopper family celebrate their birthday alone,
and sure enough we had two to celebrate.

Tate is fifteen!
And Grandma Grasshopper is... mature :D

Wyatt snapped this for me, so he's missing,
but we had fifteen around those tables.

See the anticipation?  They're about to get their gifts :D
Also, Tate would like you to notice his shirt.
He's really into funny t-shirts right now.
And for you Canadian readers, he bought that shirt in Canada, lest you think we're mocking you. ;D

Grandma and Grandpa Grasshopper noticed his t-shirt love and customized this for him.
I think Grandpa has one that matches.
You can see it was a hit!

But of all the wonderful-and-much-appreciated gifts he got, I think this gift bag hit his funny bone the hardest.  Good find, Aunty Tami!

His brothers teamed up to get him something they'll all enjoy.

And since Aunty Tami won't be with us at Thanksgiving and wanted to carry on family tradition,
she brought the boys an early "Thanksgiving gift".

Now, maybe I'm a bit of a photo-purist, but I'm not a fan of photos taken with the flash,
though that's obviously necessary in dark places.

I give you a little photo retrospective of my handsome young man!

About six months old - isn't he a cutie?
And those big, blue eyes... they melt my heart.

The moment we turned on the first hearing aid, age three and a half.

On a summer vacation to the Oregon coast, an endless area to conquer with his big trucks...

.... and so full of treasures to share with Grandpa.

Working with real power tools is very serious business, at Aunty Tami's.

First trip to Disneyland!  2007, age 8.



When you can't sled in it, build a snow tank.

Mr. Exuberant

Tate was such a good defender (at soccer) we made him this shirt,
but here he's up on the roof cleaning gutters
(hence the safety harness).
That boy is fearless!

More addictive than crack.


One of Tate's many "arranges".

When you visit the military museum,
don't you want to pick Sadaam Hussein's nose?
(Gunnar is not amused.)

Oh my.
One hundred percent BOY.

Yet gentle.

On our big vacation of 2011 I had the boys keep journals.
Tate's is a wonderful treasure of memories and humor.
He created a theme (the daily LOG) and added sketches.
Love that sense of humor!

And I love the memories we made all over the western U.S.

And oh-my-goodness I love that irresistible dimple!

My boys are growing into young men.
Love that look of pride... the good kind of pride ;D

And isn't he just fine in a uniform?
Of course, this is an older picture.
He has a bit more "salad" on his bars these days.
(That's what they call the ribbons/decorations they earn.)

Can't believe how fast he's growing.

He gets up at six every morning to exercise and have his devotions.
His favorite subject is history.
He jumps in to help with chores around the house.
He's read through the entire Bible on his own.  Twice.
He's as stubborn as a mule.
He's a hard worker.
He has a wacky sense of humor.

And I love him :D


sara said...

Awww. Happy birthday, Tate!

Julie, you've been blogging a long time - I think I remember some of those pictures.

RogersUIO said...

Happy Birthday to your boy! I really enjoyed reading your birthday tribute. Here's our recent birthday boy: http://www.rogersuio.blogspot.com/2013/11/andy.html. He also likes funny t-shirts. I think he and Tate would get along just fine. :)

Cathy M. said...

I LOVE this post! My favorites are: fingers in Saddam's nose, and with Grandpa on the beach. I was never very good at taking photos, quality or quantity. Man, oh man... before you know it, they are going to be GROWN!

Joyful Reader said...

What a wonderful young man! So handsome and well rounded! You should be one proud mama! Happy Birthday!

Herding Grasshoppers said...

I'll pass on all your congratulations - I am one proud mama :D

melanie said...

Somehow I think the funny t-shirt love is inherited or learned... thinking of your dad's shirt about neutering the cat. :D

Great post ~ Happy Birthday, Tate!

Rebecca D said...

Enjoy these years... It seems like they turn 15 and the Lord hits the fast forward button... I think it's all the activities and such, but enjoy every minute and squeeze in as many as you can get!

The dB family said...

What a sweet and special post for your birthday boy! He sure makes me smile. I LOVE the shirts!!


dlefler said...

I am SO SO SO behind on reading blogs. I can't believe Tate is 15! Happy Birthday to him, and what a great young man he's become. Those big blue eyes are so adorable (in his baby picture) - why do they have to grow so fast?