Harper and Amon’s birthdays are just 4 days apart so at the end of March we party pretty hard.  Harper turned the big ten this year and again, I found myself saying, “What in the world has happened?!?!?!”  All our kids just keep growing and getting older and while it comes with new challenges I am totally digging who our kids are becoming.  Give me all the big kids all day long.

Harper is our first double digit.  Josh’s dad said at dinner the other night, he couldn’t talk about it…in 10 years she’d be twenty.  I mean, she’s 8 years from being a technical adult.  8 years will go by in a flash because 10 sure did.  We call Harper our sanity.  She is so go-with-the-flow and she is mother hen to ever single kid in our family even Hudson and Solomon who are so close to her age.  In China, it was really starting to bother Solomon how lots people were taking pictures of him.  At one point Harper told Josh and I how she could tell it was really bothering him.  We then watched as we traveled from place to place when someone approached Sol to take a photo, Harper would wrap her arm around his neck and push on past the people without even giving them a glance.  She was like his personally body guard.

Don’t get me wrong, she can fight hard with those brother’s too…crazy hard, but she loves harder.  She is absolutely smitten with Amon, Everett and our littlest.  They all get kisses and hugs before she leaves each morning and often she uses her own money to buy them treats at the store.  She has cried bucket loads over our littlest.  She sees her pain and sadness and longing for her biological parents and it crushes Harper’s heart.  Despite Harper wanting her to be her real sister, there is no one who wants our littlest to be reunified with her first family more than Harper Kelley.

Harper is fun and kind and creative.  She loves to draw and paint and color and create anything and everything.  Rainbow is still her favorite color…hence this year marked her 3rd rainbow birthday door.  She’s growing older and her likes are changing from dolls and Polly Pockets to clothes and music and her friends.  She ADORES her friends.  Want to speak her love language…just let her have a friend or cousin over and she will love you forever.  She Facetime’s weekly with her friend Zoe from church who she always sees Wednesday and Sundays 🙂 and gives my phone number out regularly.

She loves to learn and read.  She loves when her teachers give projects and she is crazy independent…maybe comes from the 1st born territory.  She’s a thinker and asks questions.  She likes to be in the know…which I sometimes term “nosey” 🙂  She loves to watch movies and go hiking and build with Legos.  Harper is always always always up for any kind of going and doing.  She loves sending and receiving mail which I madly love.  She writes letters all the time and is the kid who wrote a thank you post card to a friend of mine for a pie 🙂  She loves ALL things sweet forever and ever amen.  She’ll bake up cookies or cook pancakes any chance she gets.

She organized and yet not.  The only thing she asked for for her birthday was a planner and every few months we have to take a whole day to clean out her desk.  She keeps all the paper things.  She’s shockingly great at letting go though and can logically think through keeps, donates and trash.  In January she went through all her doll stuff and individually bagged each outfit with accessories and then said she was ready to donate them.  I died a little, but also LOVED that she was so thoughtful in bagging them all up and giving them away.  She still loves to play school with her brothers and they each have their own homework folder of their work in her desk drawer.

She sets an alarm each morning to get up.  She loves her sleep…she’s pretty much the only kid in our family who really knows how to sleep in.  She’s funny and silly and has the best laugh.  She knows she has a voice and she uses it often for justice and love and fighting and jokes and singing songs and for sharing her feelings and compliments.  She knows each person in our family so well and uses it to build them up.  The other morning I heard her compliment Josh on how green our grass was getting…filled his love tank right up.  Again, don’t get me wrong…she is far from perfect just like the rest of us.  She documents life on her camera ALL THE TIME so we got her a instax polaroid and she was head over heels.  It was a total surprise and she loved it!!!!  Harper is a whole lot of fun and love mixed together.

For her birthday she did not waiver for a moment.  She knew exactly what she wanted.  Rainbow waffles for breakfast and chocolate chip cookies to share with her classmates.  Everett and I HAD to eat lunch with her at school so she could show him off to all her friends.  She wanted to eat dinner at church since her birthday fell on a Wednesday.  We let her plan dinner the next night and she went with grilled hamburgers, chips and strawberries plus Funfetti cupcakes and mint chocolate chip ice-cream for dessert.

Since she was turning the big 10 Josh did an extra birthday activity with her and took her hiking on an overnight trail in Montgomery Bell Park.  Uncle Andy and her cousin Meiya joined them making it even more up Harper’s alley.  We heard all about it and apparently they had the best time.

For her family activity she chose the movies, so yesterday I took Harper, her friend Zoe, Hudson, Solomon and Amon all to see Boss Baby (soooooo funny & good) and then to eat lunch at Steak n Shake.  Milkshakes all around.  They had too much fun.

Oh Harper Kelley!!!  You are a good one indeed.  You made me a mama and have filled our lives to the brim with love and goodness.  You have a heart to watch out for.  You are a world changer.  You have got a fire burning and I cannot wait to see what all God has in store for you.  You are strong, brave and fierce and I could not love you one ounce more.

Happy 10th birthday!


  1. Rhonda Finchum says:

    Happy Birthday sweet Harper!!!

  2. Jo Moseley says:

    Oh, my G00D-ness! Ten years? Happy Happy 10th Birthday, Harper K! I just love to come and read your Mom’s blog and to see the photos of how you and your brothers (and, Lil Sis) change and grow. I really like the camping photo of you & your cousin under the wooden sign. And, the very last photo is beautiful! I will be praying that your 11th year will bring lots of Joy and Happiness and for only good health for you and your family. Happy Rainbow Day!

  3. Aunt Tootsie says:

    Those hikers should have come to see me!
    Harper is a beautiful girl, it’s obvious, inside and out.
    Tell her I said happy belated birthday, would love to see all of you sometime.

  4. Aunt Tootsie says:

    Those hikers should have come to see me!
    Harper is a beautiful girl, it’s obvious, inside and out.
    Tell her I said happy belated birthday, would love to see all of you sometime.

  5. Happy 10th Birthday, Harper! ❤️ I can’t believe so many birthdays have passed since I started following you! Craziness. I love watching your family grow. Thank you for sharing your story.

  6. Happy belated birthday to Harper! I’m totally with her on being organized and yet not – and on keeping all the paper things. That’s why my bookshelf is all sorted and alphabetical, but my extra bed is covered with papers and receipts and movie ticket stubs and things I might need one day…. 🙂 I should follow her example and clean things out…

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