My husband and son have birthdays within a week of mine and we always celebrate by making memories on a super fun birthday weekend adventure.

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We've been to Montpelier, Vermont, Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and even Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Every year, we save our pennies to travel someplace new and play tourist, exploring all secret places, swimming in the hotel pool, and ordering room service. In 2021, our travel plans came to a stretching halt because our son had to have surgery at Upstate Golisano Children's Hospital in Syracuse.

When my husband and I sat down with our son and explained about his surgery and not being able to travel, John was momentarily sad and then he perked up. John chatted about how he knew a lot of kids treated at Upstate Golisano are also St. Jude patients.

READ MORE: Grandma’s Mac and Cheese – A Comforting St. Jude Story

Then, he jumped up and threw his arms in the air saying we should give the money we saved for our trip to the kids at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital instead. My husband and I looked at our son with our jaws open and asked him to repeat what he'd just said because we were floored.

Jay Long
Jay Long

Although our family was already Partners in Hope, we did send a check to St. Jude, written for the amount of money we didn't spend on our trip. My son's only request was that one day we can take him to St. Jude so he "can meet the awesome kids."

This year, our birthday adventure is back on, but when I asked my son what he wanted for his birthday this year, he named a couple of toys and then said he really just wanted the kids at St. Jude to get better.

Today, my little boy turns nine and you can help the dreams of both my son and the kids at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital come true by donating to celebrate my little guy's birthday.

If you donate, please reach out and let me know so that I can share your generosity with my son!

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