We went to dinner at Pizza Express in Greenwich and then came back to the house for cake and presents. Eli got a Manchester United jersey from Richard and I, a solar system model and a watch from Baca and Grandpa Hall, and a set of scriptures from Baca and Grandpa Bird. (A birthday tradition for 8 year olds.)
Eli is a really thoughtful and introspective boy. You can see in his furrowed brow that the wheels in his head are constantly turning. He is a sponge for knowledge and loves to learn trivia type facts and data, particularly about religions and civilizations. He will often come to me with a "Did you know..." statement as if it's the most exciting thing he's learned so far.
Eli's quality that is both endearing and infuriating is the way he is perpetually distracted. All day, every day it feels like I'm asking him to focus or reminding him to stick to the task. Simple tasks like getting dressed or putting his dishes in the sink seem to take ten times the appropriate amount of time. But it's that same trait that causes him to notice details in everything and appreciate and observe the little things.
Despite lacking a bit in the patience category, Eli is the most sensitive to his siblings needs and feelings. His compassion runs deep for them, and for humanity in general. He doesn't like violence or destruction or trauma. He loves playing video games (FIFA '15 and other football/soccer games) and could easily be the kid who never leaves the couch if we're not careful. He also likes board games and playing sports with Cameron so long as Cameron plays fair. Nothing ticks Eli off more than someone who breaks the rules. He loves hearing and telling jokes, and especially loves anything that is mysterious or magical. (Card tricks, illusions, brain teasers.)
Eli's introverted personality brings such a nice balance to all the extroverted personalities in our other children, and we love him so much.