Happy Birthday to Me, Because of You. My Priceless Gift.

Wow. How do I begin?

Today is my 36th birthday…

And a few days ago while I was upstairs getting ready, I heard some commotion going on downstairs. As I walked into the kitchen, I was surprised to see one of my dearest friends and my mom standing there wearing huge grins.

It was about 9 am on a Sunday morning and I surely was not expecting their company. My mom had breakfast in hand and Diana held out the most beautiful box with a blue ribbon.

My hair wasn’t dried.

I was crying and shaking and I didn’t even know why.

I hadn’t cleaned my house for company.

What was all this?

Diana preceded to tell me with tears running down her face, “Nelle, we thought this year you could use extra encouragement. We gathered letters from family and friends and put them in this memory box for you so that you could read about the love people in your life have for you.”


I was so taken back.

To be truthful, I’m not the easiest person to surprise… I have a tendency to have a hunch if something’s going on. But this…this…blew me away. I was so overwhelmed with emotion that I honestly couldn’t even soak it in. It was the most beautiful, kind, and thoughtful gift I had ever been given.

It was a box full of memories. More precious than anything bought.

It was my life- the people who encompassed my days. The laughter, the experiences, the joy and even the pain.

It was in that moment that I realized that anything good about me was because of God and the people who are in my life. These precious people have brought out the laughter, tears, and joy and have made me a better person. They’ve given so selflessly and have given me the blessing of being a part of their lives.


Letters from old friends, new friends, every day friends, friends from afar, and family members were all in this priceless little box.

Letters written from the hearts of my children…

and from my family…

It reminded me how rich in love, thankful, blessed, and grateful I am.


It taught me that every time we ask a person to get together that we are really asking, “Would you like to make a memory with me?”

That’s the good stuff. That’s what truly matters more than anything in life.

Thank you for being in my life, dear friends and family. You’ve filled me up with so much love- my cup overflows.

“A true friend loves at all times.” ~Proverbs 17:17


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