2. She was always my 'big' sister even though I overtook her in height. She could always put me in my place because she had every right to (by her example and older-ness).
3. We used to have knock-out drag-down fights - especially with hair pulling and wrestling over the t.v. remote (which in our family was always called 'the button-pusher').
4. She knew how to stay out of the worst conflicts in our home. She got a lot more homework done this way, I think.
5. In our teens I was always jealous of how popular she was. Boys were smitten with her. Some would follow her home just to be in her presence. I was amazed by the hold she had over them, even though she didn't give them much time or attention.
6. As a kid she really detested family picnics.
7. Whenever we're in Florida she doesn't feel her time is complete without a visit to the Manatees. We bond over our love-affair with Manatees.
8. When we were little her hair was always longer than mine. It was a point of pride for her and a point of jealousy for me. One day, in her teens, she voluntarily had it all cut off. When it grew back a bit, she got a perm - which made it very poofy. My brother and I labelled her 'mushroom head' for quite some time. Not sure she ever forgave us for our mockery.
9. She is fluent in French and Spanish (and certified to teach both).
10. She is the coupon/bargain queen. She's great at finding stuff at garage sales. She even figures out how to get money from using a coupon. It always baffles my mind. But out of her collections and freebies, she loves to stock the local food-pantry/women's shelter with items they could use.
11. She loves to enter contests and rarely wins. But one time she won $20,000 and I thought she was joking. She wasn't. We quit teasing her after that.
12. She is a cleanie. I, on the other hand, well... (I guess I have a thing or two to learn from her).
13. She was always dilligent in practicing piano. I wasn't. She was always a level or two ahead of me. I always wanted to be like her - in piano and everything else. In fact, I chose my elective subjects in high school based on what she chose.
14. After we quit our fighting phase, sometime in college, we got along great. I don't think we've had any fights since then - she even let me live with her after college - which was a huge step (for her, not me!)
15. She loves Chik-fil-A and McDonalds.
16. She prays every day with her kids for her family.
17. She faithfully attends a small church with her family each week. Her presence is an encouragement to all.
18. Relationships have always been important to her - she always has an open heart to a friend from any time in her life. Her welcoming and warm spirit are appreciated and a blessing to all who know her.
19. She doesn't like conflict but when she reaches the limit, watch out. She will put you in your place, and you probably deserve it, so you can't argue with her.
20. On today, her birthday I want to tell her how much I love her and am thankful for God putting her in our family - to be the glue for our family, and the glaze which smooths out all our quirky personalities.