Thursday, September 8, 2011


In all the excitement of preparing for the hurricane, getting through the hurricane and recovering from the hurricane, I completely forgot to write about Sarah’s Extra Exciting Fantastic Incredibly Cool Birthday Gift!  Which came from an Incredibly Cool Blog Reader Birthday Gift Giver!

Here’s a blow-by-blow (or picture-by-picture) account of the opening of the aforementioned surprise gift.

Sarah took the wrapping off the first of the two gifts in the Mystery Set and stared at the contents in a bit of puzzlement.  Not to mention befuddlement.  It was a case for a Kindle?  Hmmm.  How very nice of someone to give that to her but obviously that person was completely unaware of the fact that she did not even own a Kindle.

Sigh.  Oh well.  It was a nice thought.


And then the light starts to dawn.

The second box.  It’s in the shape of  . . . . could it be . . . a Kindle?




It’s a Kindle!


Could a book loving gal be any happier?


Let me just say that Sarah and her Kindle were instant BFF’s and she has already used it for many hours in the short time she’s had it. She’s even graciously said that I could borrow it from time to time  .  .  .   for a small hourly fee.  (kidding!)


Anyway, thanks to Susan from Utah, for making Sarah’s sixteenth birthday so incredible. 

(And if any of you Kindle users out there have any helpful hints or user tips for Sarah concerning this wonderful piece of technology, please leave a comment.)

Sarah also received lovely gifts from several other blog readers, most of who have been following her story (and her life) for many years through the Caringbridge blog; it’s so cool how long term readers turn into honorary Smith family members.   It was such a big birthday to celebrate for our Miracle Gal and we’re grateful for the joyful additions to her celebration that arrived in the mail that day.

Before I close, this was the view from our front porch this morning.  As you can tell from the flooding in the street, we certainly did not need any more rain in our area; however, it made for pretty pictures.

thurs rain 159-1

thurs rain 171



Jodi said, “Becky,  these pictures are AMAZING! I look at many of them thinking if I were there and these were post cards I would pick "this" one up to remind me of my trip. I rarely send post cards but rather select/purchase them to help me remember something special.  Do you do any editing before you post them?”

Jodi, thanks so much for your sweet compliment.  There are few things on earth I love doing any more than taking pictures. 

As for editing, any minor edits I do are in Picasa or   Picasa is a free download and is wonderful for organizing photos and for simple editing.  Picnik is free up to a point and then for additional features, it’s $25 a year which is well worth it.  I use Picnik a whole lot, not just for picture editing but doing graphics for church.

Jodie also asked, “How is Taylor's family doing now?”

They are still digging out from all the chaos but are holding steady.   They are such a great family!

Mrs. Pam said, “Snowy, what does your middle initial stand for? Have you told us, and I've forgotten? specialist.... sheriff.. . star ..sweetie pie?”

Jodi responded, Isn't it something like Studmuffin or something along those lines??”

And she was right! We made that his middle name because it was so absolutely incongruous with his whole persona.



22 Had Something To Say (Just click here!):

Anonymous said...

You can search Amazon for 'free kindle books'. They have a fairly large selection of various genres. Some new authors, some classics. I check often, as they add new books on a regular basis.

MaryH said...

A Kindle - how perfect and what a wonderful surprise! Glad you had the best birthday ever, Sarah - unfortunately, I do not have any Kindle hints - trying to save some money and get one for my book loving daughter who is starting to graduate school in a few weeks. I also love the pictures - and they could be postcards - Becky, you need to consider compiling your photos into a book.

Anonymous said...

Sarah, I love my Kindle. They have a lot of free books that you can download. A lot of classics and some fun stuff as well. It is the best money I have ever spent. If you ever have any questions email or call me (your Mom has my contact info). They have a great customer service support line (for Kindle questions only) as well: 1.866.321.8851!

Love ya guys!


Anonymous said...

A kindle is a wonderful gift - mine is always with me - fits in my purse perfectly. If you know anyone else who has a kindle, some of the books can be loaned to each other for 14 days. My sister is always calling to see what I can loan her. Enjoy your kindle, Sarah.


Angie said...

I second the first comment with searching Amazon for free kindle books. From the Kindle store homepage in Amazon, you can search the top 100 bestseller and free list. It's on the right hand side of the page -- you have to scroll down a little to find it. It's updated regularly, so check it often. There are "free for limited time" books listed there as well so I take advantage of those. Also, "like" Free Books for Kindle on Facebook. The person that manages that page usually does at least one post per day (sometimes more) of newly listed free books and will give a synopsis of the book so you know if you'll be interested or not. I've gotten many Karen Kingsbury books for free...and even a Francine Rivers book free.

Another tip, to conserve battery I usually only turn on my 3G wireless when I need to download a book and then I turn it back off. The kindle batter lasts a LONG time between charging.

If I think of anything else, I'll let you know. I'm on facebook -- Becky, you and I are friends there -- So if Sarah had any questions she could feel free to ask me.


Karo said...! They have a monthly thread highlighting some of the newest free selections, including some young adult selections. Just double check the price when you click over to Amazon from the thread, because the price can change quickly. I've downloaded a ton of free books this way.

Jessica Kramasz said...

Oh yay - what a great gift. I love my kindle! Check for free books on Amazon often, there's some great ones there and the selection changes.

soccer6 said...

Check with your library. Some systems are starting to loan out e-books.

Karen said...

I have a Nook Color myself, but I'm pretty addicted to it too! And looking for the "free" books is awesome! I've gotten some of my old favorites and a lot of classics I never got around to reading.

Anonymous said...

yep, when I read Jodi's response, I remembered that she was right!
yep, those pictures are gorgeous!

mrs pam

Ann Martin said...

Great gift. Now you will enjoy books even more without the bulky, heavy weight of holding them. I gave Jim another brand of e-book for Christmas but wish I had gotten a Kindle. He has had problems downloading with his. May have to get another one this year and give his away that he got last year. I purchased it from Belk and I thought it would be just as good. It may be but he hasn't found out yet. Enjoy, book girl!!!!

Anonymous said...

Kindle's special (Friday, 9/9) is Elin Hildebrand's Barefoot. It's only available for another few hours for the low price of $1.99 (that's an 80% discount). I have never read anything by her but she has six or seven other books and the reviews have been pretty good. And, too be honest, I wouoldn't turn down a book under $2.00 anyway. LOL!

Anonymous said...

I sure hope this is NOT INAPPROPRIATE (if it is, Becky, I am VERY SORRY) but you all must go over to Sarah's CB page: and check out the short blurb Becky wrote. It speaks volumes to the amazing young lady Sarah has developed into and the equally amazing role models that molded her into the remarkable young lady that she has become. Kudos to you, Becky, and Steve! I love you guys! Jodi

The Pennington Point said...

Happy belated birthday! My older girls both have Kindles and love them. Lisa~

klhp said...

Kindle now supports e-loaning from your local library! Check with your library to see if they do e-loans, then sign up and start downloading! Happy birthday -- and happy reading!

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