13.

Nate is 13 now.  Candace and I put together 13 things for him, some silly, others more serious… maybe I’ll post more about them later.
I still remember my 13th birthday; it was my first birthday in Dubai. We didn’t have candles, so we used the lighter for the stove. Daddy and I went out in the morning, and he gave me my claddaugh, a new Bible, and a letter he’d written me.
It seems odd that Nate’s already that old. I still remember jumping and shouting in gramma and grampa’s bedroom when daddy called from the hospital to tell us the news. We were so excited to have a brother, and that excitement hasn’t lessened with time. I love having a brother, especially a brother like Nate… even if he is already taller than me.
So here’s 13 things I love about Nathaniel/Nate/Naynay/Flannel/Chickenhead Frank (that’s a long story).

1. He wants to base his actions and conviction on scripture. (“Kyleigh, where’s that verse, you know, about women… not hitting them, I mean.”)

{unconvinced that rugby is better than football}

2. Your love for cooking (and eating).
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{I’m Chickenhead Frank, best private eye…}

3. You’ll do anything for little kids. I love watching you play with them, especially Ellie, William, and Hope.

{playing with Bethan}

4. Your love for people, and the way you always want to do something with someone, and include others, especially your family.
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{exploring graves in Lebanon. That’s what we do for fun. We’re homeschooled, ‘kay?}

5. Your unique fashion sense. 🙂 (No more long socks, and long sleeves with shorts? Never! But two watches is perfectly acceptable. And of course, so is your flannel)
Rothenburg6
{swordfighting with daddy in Rothenburg, Germany}

6. You won’t tackle a girl, even if all the other guys are doing it. (See comment on #1)

{Football. Nate’s in the red, kinda-sorta tackling}

7. Your knack for making us laugh in any situation.
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8. Your ever-ready acting skills.

9. Your diligence in getting your schoolwork done well and quickly.
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10. How well and patiently you teach others.
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11. You love spending time with us, whether it’s a movie, Boggle, daddy reading, family worship…
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12. You carry in the groceries for mommy.
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{biking in a national park in the Netherlands}.

13. You want to tell us about what you’ve been reading and playing and doing.
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{in Yemen. He protested for a week that we were going, then didn’t want to leave}.

Proverbs 4:23-27
Keep your heart with all vigilance,
for from it flow the streams of life.
Put away from you crooked speech,
and put devious talk far from you.
Let your eyes look directly forward,
and your gaze be straight before you.
Ponder the path of your feet,
then all your ways will be sure.
Do not swerve to the right or to the left,
turn your foot away from evil.

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