And I’m writing this very special blog post, just for her (in case I forget to call her later)!  Ha ha, like I could ever forget to do something as important as calling my sister on her birthday (especially after I wrote this very special blog about it)!

Actually, I’m pretty bad at remembering to call people on their birthdays.  You might have noticed, if you’re related to me, that I forget it frequently.  And don’t even send a card.  Because I’m a terrible human being.  This self-flagellation is meant as a belated birthday gift to everyone I’ve accidentally slighted.  Except Bythelbs, for whom it is meant to be a timely birthday gift.  Because today is her birthday!  This very day!

I won’t tell you how old she is, except to say that she’s younger than I am.  Also, I can’t remember.  Just kidding!  That was a joke–like, I can’t remember because I’m so old, unlike her.

Random Number of Fun Facts about Bythelbs, Which Number Has Nothing To Do with Her Age

1. She was my favorite pen pal when we were in college.  She was at BYU, I was at a small Baptist school in Virginia, and I always looked forward to getting her letters in the mail because they were so funny.  This was before e-mail killed the letter-writing tradition.  We wrote each other long letters.  I’m not sure how I managed to write so many pages about my incredibly boring life–well, actually, I do know how I do it.  It’s the same way I write this blog.  I guess I’m not sure how I managed to write so many pages longhand without getting a cramp.  I was addressing Christmas cards last night and I woke up this morning with a really sore arm.  Clearly I had not used those muscles in quite some time.  But here I am making this all about me.  Expect more of that, probably.

2.  I was really sad when she got engaged–not because she was getting married before I was (I kind of expected her to do that), but because I was afraid that everything would change and we wouldn’t be as close anymore.  Actually, what happened is that she got married, we still wrote each other letters, but when we both started having kids, we did drift apart somewhat.  Partly because I became very bad at calling people on their birthdays.  Or ever.

3.  My blog used to be a complete secret from everyone except my husband, until circumstances conspired to allow Bythelbs to discover it quite by accident.  I won’t lie to you, kids.  When she told me she’d found my blog, I was like, “Oh…[crap].”  Let’s just say it could have been ugly.  But instead it brought us close together again because once she’d read my blog–psh, what was left to hide from her?  I even convinced her to start her own blog.  (And by “convinced” I mean “said, ‘that’s a great idea!’ when she brought it up all on her own.”)  Initially I tried to direct some traffic her way–you know, to be the supportive sister–but since I didn’t have much traffic coming my way, there wasn’t much to direct anywhere else.  In the end, I think I got about ten times more readers from her than she ever did from me.  (And by that I mean I think I got about ten readers from her.  Which more than doubled my total readership.  So that was awesome.)

4.  She has always been the funniest person I know.  I don’t know how many people get to see her hilarious side in real life, but she has always been able to make me laugh.  During times of my life that were incredibly difficult and dark, she would call just to check up on me and sooner or later I would be cracking up.  (In the sense of laughing, not of having a nervous breakdown.)  She doesn’t even mean to make me do it, she just does.  (And by that I do not mean that I laugh at her…although sometimes I guess technically it is laughing at her…but fortunately she has a good sense of humor about it!)

So–happy birthday, Bythelbs!  I hope you’re celebrating in style (though how you will top this Very Special Blog Post, I do not know).

And by that I mean “I hope a cop comes to bust up your party and ends up singing and dancing (not in a creepy way, like a stripper, but just like in this video).”