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Avery Evins is turning 14 this year.

It’s that time of year again: Avery Evins is hoping for lots and lots of birthday cards to celebrate her 14th trip around the sun.

Avery, who lives in Emporia with her parents Laura and Josh Evins, will turn 14 on Dec. 11. Laura said her daughter suffered from a hemorrhage on her brain at birth which led to the development of hydrocephalus and the need for a shunt. Avery underwent brain surgery at just 2 months old. Afterward, Avery was diagnosed with a chromosomal syndrome called 2p Trisomy 10q Monosomy, Autism Spectrum Disorder and scoliosis.

Before the Evinses started “Avery’s Birthday Card Adventure,” Laura Evins said her daughter didn’t care too much for her birthday and she didn’t care about Christmas or presents. Now, that’s all completely changed.

“Avery gets super excited when we check the mailbox and count up her cards,” Laura said. “She loves to tally and add up her total number of cards each day. We even make them into word problems and comparing boys vs. girls. Over the years it has turned into something much bigger than I could have ever imagined. It seems Avery’s story has impacted many people in our community and elsewhere too. It makes me so happy to know Avery brings joy to others. She’s a gift and I love that I am her mom.”

Every year, the Evinses invite friends and family — and people from all over the world — to send Avery birthday cards.

Avery “continues to love Sonic, chocolate shakes at McDonald’s, trains, Nick Jr, and going on our daily rides, along with school and math,” Laura said. “Avery also loves to listen to music and when we sing Christmas Carols to her in the car. Plus the Chiefs and Royals. Go Chiefs! Avery is in 8th grade at Olpe Junior High. Go Eagles!”

Last year, Avery received 571 birthday cards from all over the world. Each year, as the event has gotten bigger, Avery has gotten more engaged. The family has come up with different themes to organize the cards received, such as dividing cards by how many contain animals or unicorns or people, how many are handmade, and so on.

“I love watching her read the words people write and the messages in the cards,” Laura added. “I see her taking it all in, quickly, but she doesn’t miss a word. Not only does this birthday card adventure bring happiness to Avery, it does to her dad, grammy, nana and I as well. Thank you all for the impact you’ve made on our lives over the years, too.”

Anyone wishing to send Avery a card this year can send mail to Avery Evins, 21 Locust Lane, Emporia, KS, 66801.

Search for “Avery’s Birthday Card Adventure” on Facebook to stay up-to-date on how many cards she receives this year.

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