Let me think of 40 things I love about you:
1. You're so caring! Whenever there's bad weather, or something going on, you always call to check on us.
2. You love hanging out with 'the fam'...as you would so often say.
3. You're always ready to help...in any way you can.
4. You are a pure crab eater...no butter, no sauce, just straight crab.
5. I love how you call me 'Jutze.'
6. You're not a guy for dates, and you ask for reminders.
7. You're an amazing dad!
8. You're such a hard worker.
9. You always tell us to start making a list of 'projects' when you know you're coming up.
10. Your blue eyes.
11. Even though it drives me crazy sometimes, I love your simple food tastes!
12. You are a great tour guide! I saw parts of Rome I never had seen before, all because of your navigating!
13. You're always on time (unlike your dad)
14. You have always loved the outdoors.
15. You guard my thoughts...telling me only what you think I can handle.
16. Your terms of endearment: Pops, Ruggie, Grute, Penzer, UJ...and Jutze...etc.
17. Your commitment to your job.
18. Your work ethic.
19. How you love to work alongside your dad.
20. You're so level-headed.
21. How you've been so helpful to Saddie and Grammy.
22. How often you call.
23. You're an encourager. I think of how you have called to encourage Addison.
24. Your love of scones...
25. Your love of my biscuits...
26. Your love of my chocolate pie...
27. Your 'famous chicken'...and watching you cook.
28. This is probably the same as #1, but you touched my heart when you were telling me how to come down the stairs after my knee surgery. "Hold on, don't go too fast!" I realized then how our roles were starting to reverse.
29. You want to make things easy for us. I think of London, of coming to get us on the fastest train, or having our tickets bought and ready for the train back to the airport.
30. Your love of 'Buckys'...
31. You're so humble.
32. According to your dad, you're a good marksmen!
33. You have great mechanical ability.
34. You've always been such a great driver, even before you were 16.
35. You have a great eye for remodeling...thinking of how you worked on your house.
36. Your desire to fish and hunt more with your dad.
37. You keep your car/trucks so clean!
38. You have a tremendous love for our country...especially after serving for over 18 years!
39. Your loyal...to us, of course, but also to your old friends.
40. You're funny..you have a great wit!
41. I love you...my first baby boy...we have been through a lot together in your 40 years. I don't think I could be any more proud of you than I am.
(OK, so I couldn't stop at 40...I could keep on adding to this...but I'll stop since you're only 40!)
Happy 40th birthday, Joshua!