Happy Birthday, Stephanie

Happy 27th Birthday, Stephanie May – as in  May-Day-baskets-of-lilacs-and-tulips-and-dancing-around-with-streamers-in-celebration-and-rejoicing!


(picture taken by Tredessa at church on Easter Sunday…Guini-almost 4, Gavin almost-6, Gemma-almost 2, parents-still twenty-somethings)

A full 5-weeks early in your arrival, who could have known, as they pronounced a mere 30% chance of survival on you and your severely underdeveloped lungs – that you’d be home in 12 days?  That you’d defy the odds and in answer to our heart’s cries and the mercy of the Lord, you’d breathe in and out until you were whole?

We named you for one of my Biblical heroes (Stephen – a man of wisdom and grace,  full of the Holy Spirit) and because three of our favorite TV actresses back in the day had the name (Stepfanie Kramer aka Detective Sgt. Dee Dee McCall in “Hunter”; Stefanie Powers aka Jennifer Hart on “Hart to Hart”;  Stephanie Zimbalist aka Laura Holt in “Remington Steele”).  I am sure I read in the baby name book at the time that your name meant “crown, or garland, festooning” yet I couldn’t have comprehended then how true that would be about you.  We added “May” in the middle in celebration of the beautiful spring month in which you were born.  You were our tiniest baby with a big, long name. 

Then you grew.  And you were funny and a singer and had a helpful heart.  And you developed a very unique sense of style and you played basketball and now guitar and you worship and you married Tristan and produced these 3 adorable kids.  And you amaze me constantly.  I did not know what an incredible wife and mommy you’d be.  I didn’t know how much I’d learn from you about following Christ and serving my family.  You are the Proverbs 31 woman, Stephanie! In every way – you are!

“Many women have done wonderful things, but you’ve outclassed them all…The woman to be admired and praised is the woman who lives in the Fear-of-God.  Give her everything she deserves!  Festoon her life with praises!”  Proverbs 31, The Message

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Twenty-seven wishes for Stephanie on her 27th Birthday~

  1. I wish for you to be rewarded for the wonderful and wife and mommy you are – to receive the fruit of the seeds you have planted into your family’s lives.
  2. I want you to get the needed time to develop your May-Dae biz with Stormie.
  3. May the creativity flow in full force for all you put your hand to as you remain o-so-close to the Creative One.
  4. I wish and pray for the smile of the Lord to be on your life.
  5. I am asking the Lord to make you aware of how He sings and delights and dances over you, crowning you with His goodness.
  6. I pray those 3 children will receive everything you have to place in their hearts as their mommy.
  7. I pray Tristan will always be blessed by you, always ravished by your beauty, both inside and out.  And may the wild romance blossom profusely and continuously.
  8. May the song of the Lord pour from your heart and mouth and please Him.
  9. May the Holy Spirit instruct you in the song of the Lord (1 Chronicles 25.7) and may you become a highly skillful musician for His glory!
  10. I wish for this next year to be full of the joy of the Lord (your strength) and for it to start with the best summer you have ever enjoyed – fun times with the people you love.
  11. I wish for you to discover new abilities and skills as you Exec. Direct a whole “Pod’s” worth of people!  What an impact you are having!
  12. For all the times the Lord has miraculously healed you in both body and mind, I pray that you will lay hands on the sick and that they will recover and that your fervent and effective prayers will produce wonderful results and many healings!
  13. I wish for you to have peace on all sides, to have favor with both God and man.
  14. I wish friendships for you that were long-ago planned by God, to enrich you and bring encouragement.
  15. The new “old” house of your dreams – I am wishing that for you!  And all the antique-and-funky stuff to fill it you could ever desire (including the music studio!!).
  16. Songs – the ones you write…when do we get to hear some?
  17. I want your lilac bushes to bloom profusely!  Because they so remind me of you – all purple and deliciously-scented.  So they should..profusely…bloom!
  18. I wish for you to know your value in our family – that you are a crown to us.
  19. I pray that you will understand what a blessed representation of our love you were to us, that to guard your life and cherish it was a symbol of all that was to come.
  20. I want you to know how much I love you and admire you and how proud I am of you, not only for the woman you have become, for the person you have always been.
  21. I am praying you can receive the praises and festooning we are bestowing upon you on the occasion of the celebration of your birth because you deserve them, you do.
  22. Be courageous.  Don’t be afraid.
  23. Be bold.  Don’t hold things in.
  24. Be you.  That is a gift to us all.
  25. I wish you laughter daily and tears when you need a good cry.
  26. I wish for all your dreams (the ones we know and especially the ones we don’t) to come true.
  27. And I pray you will take your place – the one God had in mind for you before you were even one day old (Psalm 139),  take the place, the ministry, the arena, the position – God has called you to and don’t ever let self-doubt or man’s opinion stop you.  You are the crown.  You are the garland that celebrates and decorates the Head.

I festoon you with my love.  I festoon you with my praises.  Twenty-seven years ago today, I got to touch a miracle – and you remind me of God’s faithfulness everyday of your love-filled life.

Happy Birthday, Stephanie… Mom

NOTE TO SELF:  Am I blessed or what?  This girl is one of the most interesting, multi-faceted and surprising human beings on earth, the spice of my life.

11 thoughts on “Happy Birthday, Stephanie

  1. Happy Birthday Stephanie!!! I don’t know what I would do without you in my life! I am so honored to call you my sister and I love that we have so much in common, yet still have different styles in fashion and such(we compliment eachother well i think) so that in the words of michael kors we aren’t constantly saying, “you’re fabulous!…no you’re fabulous!”…that is a good thing, makes good style i think:)
    anyway, i am so glad you were born and like mom said, you ARE an incredible mother…i was just bragging to amber about you this morning on how creative and thoughtful you are with the kids. i want to be just like you when i have kids of my own. i love you and pray that your day is blessed with love, laughter, and fun!

  2. Happy Birthday, Steph!!! You truly are a wonderful big sister! Thank you for humoring me and pouring into me and loving me. I pray that this year God shows you even more of who He’s created you to be and that you’ll ENJOY LIFE! I love you!

  3. I love you honey!! I’ll be praying all these wishes over you this coming year. I know there’s a wish about date nights in there somewhere too!

  4. HAPPY, BLESSED birthday, Steph! I hope your day is FABULOUS – just like you! So glad I share my name with someone so spectacular. God bless you this year, sweet friend.

  5. Happy Birthday, Stephanie! You are very special to me. I am so proud of the wife and mommy you are…two of the greatest roles on earth. There are so many facets to you and your personality. May you “be all you can be!” The world needs you, pour into your children and multiply what God has given you. Love You!

  6. Happy Happy Birthday my little Steph. When did you get all grown up anyway? –27..? where did time go? Seems like you were so little ‘yesterday’…….leading the song service …. getting the words up on the screen so Grandma wouldn’t get her tongue all tangled up…and then tapping your toe to the music to keep us all in line with the beat of the song. I loved watching you–and the Lord loved watching you too. I just saw 2 pictures of you and it was as though I was looking into the face of your mother a few years back. I compliment you both.
    Have a great Birthday Steph. and I do hope I got your card there on time….?
    Love ~~~~Grandma

  7. Happy Birthday Stepher,
    Work like you don’t need the money, love like you’ve never been hurt, dance like no one’s watching!
    I love you, honey.
    You are my little Stepher Doodle…

  8. Thanks so much Mom for this blog! I love reading all of your blogs, but the ones about me are especially wonderful – ha! I love you Mom!

    And thank you for all of the sweet comments from everyone! I love you all!


  9. I love you stephanie rhoades oh I mean kelley. I don’t know why I always mess that up?! I miss sharing a room with you and knowing you intimately because of it. I love so much about you and I look up to you more than you know and probably more than I let you know. I pray and hope for this year that we can become closer as sisters and friends. Happy birthday beautiful sister!

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