Happy Birthday John Parker!

If you were to ask John why he loves me he would reply, “Because she gives me two snacks.” No, literally, because my friend asked him. If you were to ask me why I love John I would NEVER be able to sum it up to one thing. I would have to tell you a million different things. The funny thing is when I first started watching JP I felt like he really didn’t care for me. I mistook his shyness for pure disinterest. Before I was technically hired I was asked to come babysit the kids for an evening, just to see if we connected. John Parker had taken a piece of paper and made circles of about a dozen colors. Some were your primary and secondary colors, but there were more than that. While eating dinner I said, “Which color is the color of my eyes?” Blue. I thought in my head. “Well, yours are more of this color, this aquamarine. You have a little bit of blue, but you also have a little bit of green.” I laughed. “Oh! Okay!” I immediately thought that he was smart, but it wasn’t until my first day of work that I showed up and the kids had to go to pre-school. When I got there John had drawn me a map of how to get to school from his house. Impressed is an understatement. In that moment, I knew he was special.

He got to choose whatever he wanted for breakfast! Red, well, Pink pancakes it is! After arguing with me for 10 minutes about whether or not he should be allowed to have six pancakes I gave him a choice, six baby pancakes or one big one!

I’ve said it over and over again that I believe God put me with Jenna and John for a reason. Jenna has many qualities that are parallel to mine. She’s strong-willed and fearless in so many ways. She thrives off of socializing and loves being busy. (She get’s this from her mommy. Jenelle and I discover almost everyday another reason why we’re so alike.) I feel that when she becomes the most stubborn person on the planet, or complains that she can’t possibly pick up because she’s just, “too tired,” that God is laughing at me. I think in a lot of ways Jenna is teaching me about how I handle myself. For a little while I wondered what lesson it was that John was teaching me. He’s a logical thinker, he loves alone time, and he thinks that how something works is a lot more interesting then what it looks like. Oh, and he’s a boy, so what could we possibly have in common? The truth is, besides those traits, John is sensitive, intuitive, and extremely empathetic. And when he laughs REALLY hard, he cries. John Parker teaches me A LOT about myself as well. :)

No birthday is complete without “Happy Birthday” by The Beatles. 

John is now six. And lately he’s seemed more independent as ever. As soon as he could swim he was off and didn’t need me in the shallow end anymore. He had a “Jump Start Kindergarten” program for a week, and it didn’t even phase him when he got on the bus. He smiled and waved from his window. I started to get teary eyed only because I was SO proud of him, and just genuinely happy for him. THEN, he told me that I didn’t have to walk him to the bus stop, I could just watch him from the deck. Like, What? What is this? When did I go from the cool nanny to the lame adult? Well, he’s crazy because he’s not going to the bus stop alone. And the way I look at it, he was pretty appreciative with this rain that I was there to pick him up. So there! But honestly, it made me just a little bit sad that he didn’t need me as much. On the day of the earthquake Jenna fell asleep on the couch and John looked at me and said, “Do you want to go lay in my bed and read books?” This never happens. I dropped everything I was doing and went right upstairs. We read for over an hour and fell asleep for a short time. I’ll never forget that. I’ll also never forget the day that we were driving home from Zoe’s house and Jenna fell asleep in her car seat. JP and I laughed the entire way home. Non-stop. All over silly faces he was making. We both had tears streaming down our faces. I’m pretty sure that everyone in traffic thought we were crazy, but we didn’t mind at all.

When he got home from school he got to open one gift. The second he’ll have to wait until Saturday to open at his birthday party. He’s been asking for a remote control car for weeks!

One day over the summer Jenna and Kaylee were both in time-out. (If you’re a friend of mine insert “Shocker” comment here. ;)) They were both in separate rooms crying and continued to yell at each other through the doors. The rule is that your 5 minutes in time-out doesn’t start until you’ve calmed down. So, needless to say, it was just me and John for a while. John was playing with his cars on the couch. I looked at him and said, “Buddy, what would I do without you?”
“I don’t know!”
“Bud, I have to have 3 boys just like you okay? No girls.”
“Yeah, you need to just have boys like me.”
“The problem is that whether I have boys or girls isn’t really up to me. What am I going to do if I have girls?”
(shakes head) “Miss Lauren, those girls will overtake you.”
Oh John Parker, the voice of reason.

This was his face the rest of the day…along with yelling non-stop!

John Parker,

You blow me away every single day. Your knowledge fascinates me. I love that you love to be loud. I love that you think everything I do is funny. I love your kind heart and how much you care about all of us. I love that you’re intuitive. If I’m having a bad day, you just know. I can feel it in your hugs. As much as your picky eating irritates me, I love that we’ve come to this place where you trust me enough to just TRY THINGS! I love how confident you’ve become and how at any given moment you’ll talk to me about your muscles. I love how much you love music and how you sing in the bathroom every. single. day. I sometimes just walk up the steps halfway just to hear you. You crack me up! I love you for snuggling with me in the mornings and even though you’re coming to this stage of independence, thank you for at least humoring me every time I ask you if you’re okay. I love that when I go on crazy tangents about staying in the yard, being grateful, and how crazy girls are, that you just say, “Okay.” A lot of times after my tangents are over I can only imagine how crazy you think I am. I’m so thankful for you. I’m thankful for your lessons every day, but most importantly for your unconditional love. 

I love you buddy! Happy 6th birthday!

And for the record, you are the reason I want boys. However, your crazy sister makes me believe that I wouldn’t mind having a crazy girl as well. ;)

Miss Lauren

Getting John in front of my camera is not an easy task. He hates it! He just squints, acts like he’s asleep, or yells and jumps around. But this, this is John Parker. This face describes him perfectly.


  1. That picture does sum him up perfectly. That is the sweet face I fall for every day…over and over again.

    Lauren, I have said it a million times but it never seems enough…we love you and thank God for you each day. Thank you for loving them the way you do. Thank you for being there for them. Thank you for making them smile.

    Love always,


  2. oh my sweet friend, you are just the best. this was so sweet, SO JP, and i just love all your photos and your words. you were meant to do this! i can’t wait to see you with your own babies. these awesome kids are as lucky to have you as you are to have them. a match made in heaven. :)

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