Sing Happy Birthday


I handed him the Fruit Loops and pushed the cart towards the milk aisle.  Jonah asked , “What’s ish, Nanny?”  “Cereal,” I replied.  “What’s ish, Nanny?” “Yogurt,” I answered as he pointed over to the Yoplait carton.


The mind of a two and a half year old is so interesting to me.  There we were, strolling through the aisles, me pushing the big cart and Jonah riding in the connecting yellow car he was driving, as we through some miscellaneous items into the big metal cart.

“Up, pleez,” he commanded.  I reached down and pulled him out of the car and placed him in the front of my cart.  It was the day after Christmas and the little store in my hometown was all abuzz with elderly grandmas and grandpas stopping to greet my grandson.

“How are you?”  one grandpa asked him.  “Good!” Jonah answered and smiled while mischievously trying to open the Dora the Explorer fruit snacks. 

And then it hit us.  The aisle with the Christmas sugar cookies, now pleasantly marked 50% off, but displaying white frosting with bright red and green sprinkles was smack dab in front of us.  Jonah pulled my sleeve and joyously announced, “Look, Nanny!  Jee-shush (Jesus) brr day!! (birthday)  He was elated.  And he cupped his hands, as though he was holding an imaginary cookie (apparently this is how they celebrate this at daycare when there’s a birthday,) in his hands and looked at me in delight and said so boldly, “Sing, Nanny!  Sing!”

Jonah began very loudly, right there next to the frozen food section, belting out the song, “Happy brrday to you, Happy brrday to you, Happy brrday dear Jee-shush, Happy brrday to you.” 

I looked at him as I sang along.  I felt emotions flooding over my soul.  And when he finished, he applauded himself and yelled, “Yeah!!!  Yeah!!!”

That a little child of 2.5 could boldly declare to all of the grocery store in Benson, MN,  that it was still Jesus’ birthday celebration, that he could sing and feel so happy and proud, and that he knew that Christmas wasn’t about getting his Thomas the train table, but about a baby in a manger named Jesus, who we celebrated His birthday, the day before at our Christmas dinner table, was now so incredibly sweet and special, that it made me tear up.

I admit it.  I wasn’t just a little bit…but a lot proud of this moment.  It is etched into my memory for life.  It feels so wonderful to think about, that I look up tonight at the winter sky and thank God for the reminder…the unembarrassed, unabashed reminder of a little child’s plea….. “Sing, Nanny!  Sing!”  And for right now…I will do just that.  Happy Birthday, dear Jesus.  Happy Birthday my King.

  1. Kathleen Sogge01-02-12

    Out of the mouths of babes! Good job Jonah!