His birthday is technically tomorrow, but I needed to post it tonight!
Oh, buddy.  How did our little man, our firstborn, our Carcar turn SIX YEARS OLD?  Wasn’t I just waking up at night with you?  (Actually, yes, you did wake me up in the middle of the night last night.  We need to work on that.  But at least you go back to sleep much more easily these days.) 
 I’ve learned so much and grown so much as a person since you came into my life..sometimes I feel like you teach me as much–if not more–than I teach you!
 Carson, you are a special kid.  There’s just no two ways around it.  Long before you could speak, you had a way of making your presence known and settled for no less than our full attention.  And once you learned to talk….your personality just FLOURISHED!
 You say and do the funniest and most frustrating things.  Once, when you were four, you got mad at me, and the way you expressed your anger was to totally mutate my Wii avatar–you made me an amazon sized woman with a mullet, a mole, huge glasses and a mustache.  Sometimes you are a little naughty genius!  And of course, there’s the infamous “locking mommy out of the house” story. 
 Right about the time this picture was taken, you and I went on a trip to California together.  It was a pretty exhausting trip, bud.  I’m not gonna lie.  And as we were getting ready to board our last flight, I was letting you run off some energy in the airport, and you ran straight into the men’s room.  Full speed ahead.  I had no other choice but to call out a warning and come in after you!
 But that eager curiosity has led to some wonderful conversations about life, God, family, adoption, poop, death, stranger-danger, ear wax, color-blindness, prosthetic limbs, car engines, cowboys, recycling and many, many more topics.

 In some ways, you seem very smart and mature to me. You have mastered the art of sarcasm. (But who are we kidding?  You learned from the master.) There are a few movies and TV shows that we can actually watch together and both laugh at and enjoy!  It’s fun to play board games like Sequence and Uno and YOU CAN BEAT US! 

 You have your own sense of fashion, which varies by day.  There are many days when you care a great deal about what you will wear, and other days when it only matters what feels soft against your skin. Yesterday you actually told me you couldn’t wear a pair of jeans because you could only lift your knee up to your chest.  I’m not sure exactly how much higher you were planning to lift those knees!  The clothing thing is just an example of several ways that you and I kind of butt heads. We both have expectations of how things are going to be, and we both get frustrated when things don’t go like we planned.  I have a feeling we’ll be figuring this out for years to come.  But no matter what conflict or argument we have, no matter how many times I mess up and lose my cool, I hope I always make it clear to you that YOU are what is most important to me!  My relationship with you is far more precious than any plans or ideas or opinions I have.  And sometimes when I don’t get my way, we get some special fashion moments like this one:
 It would be detrimental for me to record this stage of your life without remarking on your passionate interest in Star Wars!  You were casually interested in the series after playing the Lego/Star Wars video game, but your real excitement took root after you had Jedi training and fought Darth Vader at Disneyland earlier this year.  What a special moment that was!  Our lives have been filled with all things Jedi ever since.
I think one of my favorite things about you, Carson, is your innocence and excitement for life.  As much as you are growing and learning and maturing, you still have moments when you are my little boy.  You still want to snuggle on the couch on many nights, and still want me to read to you at night and lay down on your bed and sing you songs.  I got to teach your Sunday School class a few weeks ago, and you were in the FRONT ROW, singing those songs at the top of your lungs, doing every single motion with all your heart.  You may be a stinker at home sometimes, but you haven’t reached that place where you act like you are too cool for us.  I’m dreading that day, because I love being with you.
 Recently a friend of mine shared that she had chosen life verses for her children.  I can’t believe I haven’t thought of that sooner!  But I’m kind of glad that it took me this long, because now I know you and your personality, more than I would have if I had chosen this at your birth. It took me only about 3 minutes to find the right verse. (Of course you can choose your own someday, but this will be mine for you.)  Ever since we discovered that you have a will of iron, I have prayed for discernment for you.  How will you use your charismatic personality and your leadership?  My greatest wish is that you will know God and seek God, and that He will give you discernment.  So this, my sweet, funny, smart and handsome boy, is the Scripture verse–actually verses– that I have chosen for you, and I will pray it over you constantly.  I know you may not fully understand it right now, but someday I believe you will.
Philippians 1:9-11
“And this is my prayer, that your love will abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best, and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ–to the glory and praise of God.”
I love you forever, sweet boy!