My hubby and I (Carol) texted each other midday today: “Can you believe we have a 15 year old? So cool. We’re old.”

Yes, we do, it is and we are.

Faithful readers know well the ritual at the Bruess house: door sign (whether the kid wants it or says he/she likes it or not) exclaiming the birthday child. While a photo was snapped with teen next to “15 OMG!” today, the words out of his mouth even before I could press finger on the button of camera were “You CANNOT put this on your blog.” So, I didn’t. I took another photo without him in it. Ha. Happy birthday, kid!

And while the defining door sign activity is, as of today, a good decade.5 years old, an activity we begin tomorrow will hopefully be the very first in a long-standing new birthday ritual: community-based-birthday-gifting. Instead of receiving (gifts, events, parties), my sweet teen decided that we would – as a family – give of ourselves and our time to help the North Minneapolis Tornado victims. In honor of his birthday, we give instead of receive.

And I would say, what an honor to be the parent of one very cool teen (whose photo is not included because of course I usually – not really – do as he says).