First off, the obvious bit. Living in a home with someone whose dream is to own a bakery and do cake decorating for the rest of her life, I naturally got a cake decorated with love from my sister. She had wanted to do this last year, but had decided that she’d rather finish of my Narnia trilogy ice cream cakes at the time. So this year was her chance to make the one she really wanted to do: The Hobbit. Using my Bilbo cup-topper from my jumbo theater pop cup as her centerpiece, she covered the top of the cake in chocolate frosting (for dirt), a couple of blackened candy melts (for rocks), and then covered the sides in yellow with part of the Elvish text on the One Ring. Pretty special, yeah?
But the highlight of my birthday it what makes it really “Hobbit-y”: my sister and I used that day to go shopping for our Operation Christmas Child boxes. How does that relate to Hobbits? Hobbits give gifts on their birthday. And one of, if not the highlight of November for me is Operation Christmas Child. I had even used my sixteenth birthday party to get my friends pack a bunch of boxes with me and that remains my most memorable birthday. Anyway, this year, my sister and I hit the dollar store and Walmart for school supplies, toys, games, and shirts. We started including shirts in our boxes last year and I think we’ll continue to do that. This year, my sister included dolls in her boxes, something I’ve only done once, but we took it a step further than that: we bought three extra outfits per doll besides. This year, I also decided to include a soccer ball and air pump in one of my boxes. In the past, I’d just packed foam balls or hackysacks, but I really wanted to send a real ball this time. The ball took quite a while to deflate and I even had to get Dad’s help with that, but we finally got it flat and folded into a box. In the end, we had a total of five shoeboxes and some leftovers for next year. 🙂