happy birthday mom!! ♥

happy birthday mom!! ♥
today is my mom’s birthday!!!!!!
if you’ve read this blog for 5 seconds
you know how i feel about my mom.
this is a big birthday for her, because
it’s her first one since moving 10,000
miles away from everything she knows
to live in johannesburg, south africa 
with my dad. we want to make her feel
EXTRA loved today, even so far away!
since she turns 55 today, here’s a little
list of 55 reasons why we all love her so much!
55 fun facts about the birthday girl
1. she would never care that i’m publicly posting her age because she is, and always has been, young at heart.
2. those closest to her affectionately call her linny.
3. she was homecoming queen at the university of utah.
4. she has done an ironman. yes, a full one.
5. she has run over 50 marathons (including the boston), hit a sub 3-hour marathon, and has run a few ultra marathons…as in 100 miles.
6. she is the cutest grandma to her grandkids, who made up her name “yaya” for her because she’s so enthusiastic about everything!
7. she is the most adventurous person who will wake you up in the middle of the night to go hike a mountain to see the sunrise.
8. she’s climbed all of the tetons.
9. her dutch oven cooking is famous.
10. all of her cooking is famous…she even taught cooking classes!
11. she made homemade whole wheat sweet rolls + eggs benedict every sunday morning of my life.
12. she is a classic. she has every color of polo & façonnable shirt ever made, and about 30 pair of the same khaki pants -ha!
13. she loves dogs and has been caught having full conversations with kona.
14. she makes every occasion the most special, and loves tradition.
15. she is terrible at pronouncing ANY foreign accent.
16. she is also a TERRIBLE liar. try playing mafia with her –the game will be over in 3 seconds.
17. she lives a life of service as evidenced by directing the bennion center, taking us on service trips and to many projects, and now serving a mission across the world.
18. she can cut harder on a water ski than a professional…and she can back the boat down the ramp on the trailer and launch it all by herself.
19. she LOVES snow skiing at alta and can hang with the best of them on any run.
20. she is so positive that our family has coined the term “lin-spin” for her ability to take any negative situation and come up with a reason it is great!
21. she is the queen of vacations but she works hard so she can play hard. **note, vacations with her are the best, but they aren’t “vacations”…more like: going to italy and backpacking from cabin to cabin through the dolomites, always finding some kind of crazy hike, run, bike ride…, boating, skiing, adventure and activity packed into every second. we always need a vacation after our dunn family trips!! :)
22. she doesn’t know the name to any movies or songs but just makes them up.
23. she has always put family #1 above anything and everything else.
24. she’s always smiling.
25. she made me boston cream pie every year on my birthday.
26. she falls asleep during every movie without fail.
27. her lemon chicken is my comfort food meal because we had it all the time growing up.
28. she showed me the world and has traveled all over with me.
29. she has visited me in every single place i’ve ever lived, multiple times…DC, London, Paris, all through Europe, SF, and now it’s my turn to visit HER next!
30. she is so generous and gives the best gifts.
31. she can laugh at herself.
32. she ignores “no trespassing” signs… which has gotten our family chased by angry locals in hawaii and nearly arrested at a monument back east.
33. she makes friends everywhere she goes.
34. she loves analogies and can always be counted on to make them (like if you know her latest paddleboarding analogy)
35. she is the best public speaker and could easily be in politics.
36. she ran our millcreek canyon loop with me so many mornings, including the morning of my wedding.
37. she is 100% genuine 100% of the time.
38. she loves the apple genius bar and goes there for any technology problem.
39. she’s a master behind the sewing machine and even won a few contests back in the day!
40. she loves jackson hole and colter bay more than any other person on earth.
41. her favorite movie is camelot.
42. she knows every james taylor song.
43. she LOVES treats and gets ice cream every day on trips.
44. she is the cutest wife and has picked up cycling, skate skiing, etc. with my dad.
45. she’ll still be the first one down a slide or on the tube or off the rope swing.
46. she is the only person who jumps in an ice cold glacier lake and come up saying.. “REFRESHING!”
47. i think all my friends might like her more than they like me, and i don’t blame them!
48. she’s the world’s best hostess and knows how to make people feel welcome.
49. she loves holiday decorations and has the best collection that she never fails to bring out for each season!
50. she lived on a dude ranch and is as outdoorsy as they come.
51. she doesn’t believe in being sick, and she never complains! (this makes her a really good nurse when any of us are sick ;)
52. she squeezes every ounce out of life and doesn’t waste a second. this “packing it in” may have resulted in a few close calls catching flights home, but we all love it.
53. the biggest compliment i ever get is being told i am like my mom.
54. all who know her, love her. i mean this.
55. she loves life, and it loves her back.
we LOVE you linny! happy 55!
thanks for being the best, most loving,
beautiful, down-to-earth, light-up-a-room,
fun, adventurous, amazing person.
i wish i was there to give you the biggest
squeeze but i hope you feel loved from afar!