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11 on 11/1/11~birthday wishes

As I was walking my kids to school this morning, I snapped this pic of my son and I.

I shared it on facebook to my personal friends a few hours later, and was surprised at how emotional I got as I typed out this message: “‎11 years ago today, this handsome boy made me a mama. I couldn’t ask for a sweeter soul to tread this motherhood journey with me.”  Emotional because it’s true.  He is such a blessing in my life, and works so hard to do the right thing.  If I get cranky and snappy, my heart breaks into a million pieces when I see him drop his head and walk away.  THAT is my driving force behind controling my temper, and I’m so grateful for it.  I’m grateful he is the oldest and leader to his younger siblings.  Grateful for his happy smile.  Grateful for his keen smarts.  Grateful he lets me hug and kiss his cheek.  Grateful he lets me play with his hair and scratch his back. I don’t want him to ever doubt that he can achieve whatever he wants in life.

A few months ago, I ordered pens with my business name on them, and when I excitedly showed him my little creation, he looked at them with a big smile and said, “Mom, you’re FAMOUS!”  I kindly corrected him that that isn’t so, but I ask for a little from all of you blog readers….will you offer a little birthday wish to my Tyler today and tell him where you live…maybe something about yourself…your favorite sports team (he likes BYU & UT).  He was born in Delaware…loves football…soccer…and Reese’s peanut butter cups.  Now I gotta run to the school and take him Chic Fil A for lunch and a cookie cake to his class!

I plan to show him this post and hope to get wishes from all over for him to read!  Thank you in advance!!!


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  1. Happy 11th Birthday Tyler!
    My brother’s name is Tyler and his birthday is in November too except he will be 32. We live in Oregon and love the Oregon State University Beavers! Have a Happy Happy Day!

  2. Happy 11th Birthday Tyler!
    I have a brother named Tyler and his birthday is in November too, except he will be 32. We live in Oregon and are Oregon State University Beaver Fans!
    Have a Happy Happy Day.

  3. happy birthday, tyler! hope it’s a great day! we live in michigan now, but will always cheer for BYU and UT! :)

  4. Happy 11th Birthday Tyler!

    I have a little brother named Tyler, and he is a very cool guy, so it must be the name. :) We live in NC–but I am from Utah, so we are HUGE BYU fans. :) Hope your birthday is fantastic!

  5. Jessica Anderson says:

    Happay Birthday Tyler!! We live in Michigan…Beaver Island, located in northern Lake Michigan. Hope you enjoy your day!! Jessica

  6. Happy 11th birthday from South Dakota! I have a daughter who just turned 11 in September. It really is a fun age, huh? We live in a small town in South Dakota where the mascot is the Coyote. But we don’t pronounce it Kie-yo-tee (like I’m guessing most people do) instead we call it a Kie-yoat (like float). Funny huh? Hope you have had a super birthday!

  7. Happy BIRTHDAY *<;) Tyler, you have an amazing, talented mother. I so appreciate her having a blog and sharing her talents with all of us bloggers :) My family is from Boise, Idaho. We cheer for BYU cougars, my husband graduated from there! Hope you have a fantastic day!

  8. Happy Birthday Tyler *<:) You have an amazing, talented mother. I so appreciate her having a blog and sharing her talents with all of us bloggers. My family is from Boise Idaho. We cheer for BYU cougars, my husband graduated from there. Hope you have a fantastic day!!

  9. Happy, Happy Birthday Tyler! I hope you are doing everything you love today. My husband loves Chick-fil-a, too. We live outside of Chicago, IL and there are no Chick-fil-as in IL, but we are getting one soon! My favorite sports team is the Chicago Bears-football is about the only sport I watch on tv. My kids both play soccer though. Enjoy your special day!

  10. TYLER! 11 on 11-1-11, how cool is that????? Happy Birthday! You met me this summer…I took your family’s pictures at the beach! I grew up in Houston with your mom…but have lived in California for 9 years now. We love the Angels and go to as many baseball games as we can! I hope you have a fabulous day! Give your amazing mama a hug for me! xoxo — Shari Hanson

  11. Happy birthday Tyler!!!!
    Your mom is awesome, which leads me to believe you´re at least a pretty awesome kid! :) I lived in the USA when I was a kid but I´m from Brazil and living here now. I´m not a sport fan (sorry, lol) but I’m right there with you on the Reese’s. :)
    I hope you have a wonderful birthday! May God bless you always. And in the words of Dr. Seuss: “Congratulations! Today is your day. You’re off to Great Places! You’re off and away! And will you succeed? Yes! You will, indeed! (98 and ¾ percent guaranteed.)”

  12. AnnaMarie says:

    Happy birthday Ty. I love UT and was blessed to graduate from that great school in 97. I hope you have a great day and enjoy every minute of it. Eleven is magic.

  13. AnnaMarie says:

    Happy birthday tyler. I also share a love of UT and was blessed to have gradutated from UT in 1997. I hope you have a wonderful day and remember 11 is magical year.

  14. Happy Birthday, Tyler from Chicago!! Hope you have a wonderful birthday with your friends and family …based on your wonderful Mom’s description of you, it sounds like they’re very lucky to have you around!! How neat that you turn 11 on 11/1/11…it’s a sign that you’re very special! Enjoy your day…I, too have a bday in November, except I’ll be turning 33. I have 4 little girls. We’re big fans of the Chicago Bears around here. That’s great that you’re a big sports fan. I am also a fan of peanut butter cups :) Have a fabulous year!!

  15. Hi Tyler,
    Happy Birthday! My Name is Heike and I live in Germany in a city called Hamburg. I like the soccer club HSV and I have a brother who is turning 26 tomorrow.
    Enjoy your day!

  16. It’s Emma Jo in Washington DC. I have been your Mom’s friend for a long time and I remember getting that call when we were all first married that she had her first baby boy. She was the first of any of my friends to have a baby and I was so excited!!! What a fun family you have and what an amazing young man you are growing up to be! HAPPY BIRTHDAY TYLER!

  17. Happy Birthday Tyler!!!! The Partridge family kids think your are awesome! Have a great birthday!!

  18. Happy Birthday Tyler. I live in the beautiful state of Minnesota. I have a nephew named Tyler. In our family, we love baseball, but we don’t all cheer for the same team. Each one has their own favorite player and team. Hope your day is very special.

  19. 11 on 11-1-11 Your mom and I both love multiple numbers! What a lucky day! 11 years ago today you made me a grandma and I’ll be forever grateful. Grandpa and I are so proud of you! You are such a great example to all of your cousins! I love that you still are willing to give me big hugs and I love hugging you! From the day you were born I have felt so blessed to have you in my life. I couldn’t wait to fly out to Delaware to hold you for the first time!. A special memory I have is going to Washington DC with your family at Thanksgiving time and Granpa, Ryan, Alayna and I walked around the temple grounds as you were trying hard to learn how to walk. I can’t believe that was 10 years ago. Thanks for being such a GREAT GRANDSON! HAPPY BIRTHDAY! I LOVE YOU!

  20. Natalie C. says:

    Tyler. Not sure if you remember me but I used to live in Round Rock and I loved spending time with your mom. Isn’t she the best mom ever? Now I live in Utah with my husband and two babies. Last night when we went trick-or-treating with our 2-year old, Jack, he got a lot of Reese’s peanut butter cups and I was so happy because I thought he’d share with me…BUT he gave them all away to his grandma and uncle. Oh well. One of my favorite memories of you is when I went to your baptism. It was a special day and I was so glad to be a part of it. You impressed me with your smile and happy attitude that day and I can still see it through pictures now. You are so handsome and I admire you all the way from Utah. Happy Birthday!

  21. Happy Birthday, Tyler! You are such a good example for our family. I have really enjoyed watching you grow up! We will be thinking of you today! Love, Aunt Kriste

  22. Kristi Haskins says:

    Hi Tyler. I was so glad to be able to wish you a Happy Birthday in person today. I really admire how you’ve grown into such a respectful and hard-working young man. You and your siblings are a blast to teach and I’m glad you’re a part of our school. I also LOVE the Horns and would happily share my Reese’s pb cups with you anytime. Since I won’t be your teacher on your next birthday, my wish is for you to continue being a great friend, an excellent example for your brothers and sisters and a true leader among your peers. Find what you love to do and work hard to do it well. Happy Birthday!

    Coach Haskins

  23. Hi Tyler,

    Happy 11th Birthday!!!!! I hope you are having a great Birthday.

    I live in Delaware and I love Reece’s also.

    I have 4 sons that are grown up now, but they played soccer and still love the sport very much.

  24. Happy Birthday Tyler!
    I’m Kelsi and I live in Utah but I am from Texas. So I hear you like BYU. I actually go to school there and it is seriously the best. It is so fun going to all of the sports events and seeing all those famous athletes around school. Last year, Jimmer from the basketball team was in one of my classes! I have yet to see Riley Nelson, the football player, but I am on the lookout. Maybe if you work really hard in school for the next few years you can come to BYU too. It would totally be worth it, trust me. Have a super happy birthday!

  25. I’m Christi, hi there and HAPPY BIRTHDAY Tyler!! I think turning 11 on 11/1/11 is pretty much the coolest birthday ever. You must be extra special! Your mom and I went to college together, and your dad and I are cousins. :) AND your parents got married on the same day my husband and I did! I grew up in Texas, up by Dallas, but haven’t been back in a long, long time. Did you cheer for the Rangers in the World Series? Right now my family and I live in Joplin, Missouri and we really like it here. I have 5 kiddos, and my oldest is in 5th grade just like you! He’ll turn 11 in May. Maybe someday our families will be able to meet! Hope you had an extra special day!!!

  26. Happy Birthday Tyler! What a cool date to turn 11 :) I live in Denver and I love love love football and cheering for the Chicago Bears. I have lived in Colorado for 3 years but am originally from Chicago. It’s a pretty awesome place to live!! Hope you had an awesome Halloween, I’m currently eating a box of nerds for dessert because we didn’t get very many trick or treaters (6!) so now someone has to eat the candy. Hope you had a great day!

  27. Happy birthday, Tyler, from Illinois. Now you’re famous!

  28. Hi Tyler,

    I hope your 11th birthday today was wonderful! Full of fun things you will remember for a long time. I live in Maryland about 1 1/2 hours northwest of Washington DC. I have to say my favorite sports to watch are baseball and hockey and since it is hockey season I watch the Washington Capitols. I love Reese’s peanut butter cups too and had one just a short time ago. Happy Birthday!

  29. Hi Tyler,

    I read your mom’s blog a lot and i have a son who is 9. He loves soccer and hockey. We live in Ontario, Canada…waaaaay up north from you. And today was definitely your famous day :)

  30. Tyler, you are an awesome kid! I remember you in the nursery in Delaware!Your mom is right, you are a special kid, and a really awesome older brother. Only one more year and you will be passing the sacrament! Wow, that will happen fast, get yourself ready, but in the meantime, enjoy every day of Eleven! :)

  31. Happy Birthday Tyler!
    I read your mom’s blog and I was excited to read about your BIG day today. I hope you had a great day! We live in Franklin, Tennessee and our home is 1 mile from the Nashville, Tennessee Temple. My kids favorite football team is the Tennessee Titans. However, my husband and I love the BYU football team.

  32. Meghan Grace says:

    Happy Birthday, Tyler and all God’s blessings to you! My son is now 14 (and one half!!) and Kristen, your post brought tears to my eyes! Nothing like the relationship between a mother and her son. Tonight, I was frustrated with my dryer of all things (it no longer dries our clothes) when my son came up behind me and gave me a big hug and said ” Mom, you are my best buddy”. Of course, I am still the momma with the authority, but he truly is my best buddy too. No one can make me laugh like he can! Happy BirthDAY to you too, Kristen!

  33. Oh…I got emotional reading this. There is something about that first child, the one who makes you a mother, that is just so special.

    Tyler, I will tell you something about myself…I love your mom. She is an amazing lady, and you, my friend are pretty darn lucky that you got her as your very own! She is talented beyond belief, thoughtful, fun, and sometimes when I read this blog I wish she was MY mom too! Jokes in your lunch box? Fun trips to the candy store? Giant Texas Sized Doughnuts? And I’m sure there are a million more things that I don’t know about. And just so you know, she really is famous. Really. THE Kristen Duke is your mom…so you know what? You’re famous too. :) I remember meeting you soon after you were born. Can’t believe you’re 11 today! Happy Birthday! Hope you had a fun day!

  34. Happy Birthday Tyler!! I would say now that YOU are famous!! :)

    My name is Vicki and I also have an 11yr old son – although, he will be 12 in December. He is a HUGE sports fan and his idol is Tim Tebow. We are big football fans but we disagree on the teams – he likes the Steelers, I like the Giants!! :)

    Hope your day is magical buddy!! :)

  35. Happy birthday Tyler! (a little late!) (Zorionak!! in my mother tongue, the Basque language :))
    I live in Bilbao, a city in the north of Spain. We really like Athletic de Bilbao here :)
    Today us my mother’s birthday! Her name is Izarra, ehich means Star in Basque.
    The world is small enough nowadays for me to be able to wish you a FUN birthday WEEK ;)

  36. Stacey MacLean says:

    Tyler..Happy Birthday one day late! We mised seeing this and are bummed we did not get to wish you a Happy Birthday yet! At least this will make your birthday last a little longer:) We are so glad you had a great day and had Chick Fil A! The boys loved Football Fridays this summer and always have fun coming over to play! They would love to play soccer with you too! And we all LOVE Reese’s peanut bytter cups too..they are the best and so are you!

  37. Happy Birthday Tyler!!! Sorry it is one day late but I just saw this. 11 on 1-1-11. That is so cool. When I read what your mom wrote I just had to write you and say Happy Birthday. I live in Ohio and love Ohio State. I hope you got everything you wanted for your birthday. Seems like you are the famous one now!

  38. Happy Birthday, Tyler!

    Sending you birthday wishes all the way from Doha, Qatar! Pull out the atlas we are way at the bottom of Saudi Arabia near our other famous neighbor, The United Arab Emirates.

    We love all things University of Michigan in this house… but with the time change we don’t always get to watch much football!

    Hope your day is great!

  39. hapyy birthday!, sorry im a day late. your mom rocks as a photographer and you truly ROCK by being so cool and letting her take pics of you. please tell my one and three year old boys that its ok if mom has a camera in her face all the time. sending you bday wishes from birmingham, AL.

  40. Happy%20Belated%20Birthday%20Tyler!



  41. Well, I’m a couple of days late but Happy Birthday from Gold Coast Australia!

  42. I’m late to the party but Happy Birthday, Tyler, from Johannesburg, South Africa :)

    I love that you let your mom give you kisses – my little boy is only 2 and already doesn’t want to kiss as much as he used to.