Hudson Is 10!

At the end of September we ushered our second kiddo into double digits.  The big 10 is so sweet and sentimental to me and celebrating Hudson turning this awesome age was a delight.  He had been counting down this day for well over a month.  He created his own calendar countdown and every morning marked each day off as his special day neared.

His birthday fell on a Saturday and was full of cinnamon rolls and bacon for breakfast, Taco Bell for lunch, Icees for a fun afternoon treat and grilled hamburgers and Funfetti cupcakes for dinner.  Some neighborhood friends came over to skateboard, play football and video games and hang out and his day was easily complete.  We broke out the cupcakes and Twin Snakes…google and then eat if you are a person who likes candy…drew on the sidewalk and soaked up a gorgeous day while they were here.

Josh Kelley and Hudson’s birthdays are exactly one week apart.  Last year’s birthdays sucked!  Big time!  Everett dying makes everything feel harder, birthdays included.  This year after we sang happy birthday to Hudson over a pile of cinnamon rolls, he went and sat on the couch with the saddest face.   I asked what was wrong, tears filled his eyes and he said, “I just miss him.”  We talked again about how special days are even harder because we’re all thinking about how Shuai should be here with us.  It’s something we all think about all the time.  I really wanted Josh and Hudson to have some fun this year and they both love to roller skate so we decided to have a skate party in celebration of them both the day following Hudson’s actual birthday.

We made tiny sandwiches, brought in bags of chips, a bowl of fruit and sausage balls and pealed the plastic off a cheap-o veggie tray knowing full well most of it would be leftover. 🙂  Hudson also asked for all the Airhead candies and a Little Debbie Zebra Cake birthday cake.

Insert backstory:  When discussing what kind of desert he would like for the party he asked if I’d heard of Zebra Cakes.  Yes child, yes I have.  Last year in his 3rd grade class his teacher shared Little Debbie Zebra Cakes with the entire class and Hudson said and I quote, “I haven’t quit thinking about how good they were.”  This is my child.  I partially felt mortified I had never provided him with the opportunity to eat a Zebra Cake, but also super thrilled with his choice of crazy easy birthday cake.  When the birthday person is making their food plan I always say, “Ask and you shall receive.” 🙂

It was the most fun birthday party EVER!!!!!  Josh and I actually have no idea what our children did during the 2 hour party.  Where was Leo?  We have no idea.  Hahahahaha.  All we knew is we were wearing roller skates and all of our roller skating memories and fun vibes came coursing back through our bodies and we could not be stopped out on that roller rink.  I’m not sure either one of us have smiled and laughed as much as we did that day since Everett died.  In fact, we declared that our next date night would be at the 21+ adult skate night.  Yes, this is a real thing and Josh and I plan to be in attendance.

The kids had a blast.  Everyone skated and requested their favorite songs and played all the roller skating games you remember for your childhood and ate and laughed and it was the best.  Hudson requested we open zero presents and do not have a planned eating time and half way through the party he asked that we didn’t even sing happy birthday to him for fear of wasting precious skate time.  So we didn’t.  Everyone just ate as they pleased and skated their hearts out.  At the end of the night there was only one lonely Zebra Cake left and as the thought crossed my mind to finally enjoy one for myself, Huson skated through, grabbed the last one and popped it in his mouth.  Happy Birthday Huddy Love!

At school the next day we ate lunch with the birthday boy and shared fun Halloween candies with his classmates.  I sat listening to him and his friends chat it up about skating and Fortnite and all the funny things 9 and 10-year-old boys talk about.  I listened and thought about how fun they are and how great it is that two of those amazing boys’ call me mama.

There are one thousand wonderful things I could say about Hudson.  He’s a thinker and worrier and lover and justice seeker and losing Everett jolted him to his very core.  He has grieved so hard and is still grieving.  He has been forever changed in a way I never wanted for him, but this kid is fierce and strong and his love for his people has forged forward and tears me apart in the most wonderful ways.  He teaches me and grows me and makes me a better person.  He’s just a freakin’ gem.

So happy 10th birthday Hudson Hall!  We’re here just watching in pure amazement as you live your life with such loyal love and bravery.  We’re the luckiest!


  1. Aw Happy Birthday Hudson!!! Your cake looks amazing. I’ve never heard of zebra cake but now I can’t stop thinking about them too!!! 🙂 Looks like the best party xx

  2. I am buying zebra cakes for my grands.. today!!…what a wonderful young man you are raising….

  3. Zebra cakes are the best and I loved he wanted his cake to be them. What a cutie. Love how y’all celebrate big!

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