Dear Hannah My Joy,
Whew! We've made it through another birthday without you here. This year, we've been so incredibly busy, I honestly didn't have time to really think much about your upcoming birthday until the night before. It's not like it used to be, you know, when I thought about it for weeks in advance ... planning a party, inviting your friends, choosing just the right gifts that I knew you'd love ... I haven't shopped for your birthday for three years now. And I can't help but remember your 17th birthday. The doctor had already told us that there was a less than five percent chance you'd ever see your 18th birthday. How unreal it was to buy birthday gifts for you that year, knowing what the doctor had said, while still praying for a miracle!
We spent the day yesterday doing things we knew you would enjoy. I made your all-time favorite birthday cake -- Mississippi Mud -- and we had tacos, cheese dip, and cake while we watched the Razorbacks beat Ole Miss. I know you remember Houston Nutt ... he's coaching for Ole Miss now, and the Hogs coach is Bobby Petrino. I think you'd really enjoy watching the Razorbacks this year. They're ranked 9th in the nation, and their quarterback is pretty cute! :)