Cherry Trees & Aviator Sunglasses

I doubt my sister Christine will sit down a write a post (it’s just not her style), so I’ll go ahead and talk about her behind her back (or, as my brother is quick to point out, in front of her back).

Christine is turning 20 tomorrow! That’s right – my tall, gorgeous sister of infamous pouty lip and artistic excellence is stepping into a new decade. She is leaving her teen years behind, embarking on what is believed to be the best years of one’s life. We spoke about this transition as a family last night; it turns out that during my mom’s 20s, she got engaged, got married, moved three times, bought a house, had two children, and switched jobs upwards of four times. When asked what she was doing when she actually turned 20, as Christine will be doing tomorrow, she grinned and said, “The same thing I had been doing before – getting into trouble!” [Our mom was a real wild child.] We are all looking forward to seeing what Christine accomplishes in this new decade.

She started the celebrations last week with a birthday dinner at Cowfish, among friends. Cowfish was recommended by Morgan, who had gone with a friend and enjoyed her meal immensely. It’s a SouthPark restaurant specializing in sushi and burgers, oddly enough. Their menu is a veritable book, and the choices are endless. Eating kosher is a little tricky, but Christine printed off the menu for us before we went, so that we could pore over it, Sharpie in hand, and cross out anything we couldn’t have. Worked like a charm. Christine strategically invited some friends to join us, and it was a really fun time. Mary was snapping pictures non-stop, so we also have some good memories. 🙂

Tomorrow evening, we will be spending time as a [complete] family – Greg & Morgan will be here with us, eating Christine’s favorite dish, salmon, and helping us celebrate the fact that we have Christine. She’s a special lady. 😉

In Judaism, birthdays aren’t such a huge deal. However, I like to think of them as a day we can each set apart to look back on our lives and thank G-d for all that He has allowed us to do, and where He has allowed us to go. It’s an opportunity to thank G-d for those who have influenced our lives for the better, and pray that we merit to do the same in the lives of others. B”H, He will enable us to continue to walk in His ways and touch the future.

In honor of Christine, we pray:

G-d of days and years, Author of life, our times are in Your hand. We thank You for the blessing of life and for all that enriches our lives. We gather today in special thankfulness to share in the happiness of Christine Squicciarini. Be with her always as the joy of her life.
May she be blessed in health and happiness, and with the strength to overcome sickness and sorrow. May we have the joy of coming together for many more years, united by mutual reverence and love. Then will our lives be filled with abundance and blessing.

Amen! So may it be. Happy birthday, Christine! We *all* love you.
[today is twenty-eight days of the Omer; that is, 4 weeks]

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