Edie's birthday this year has been a blast. She's at the age when the whole "presents" and "party" things are making sense. She's knows that on her birthday she is extra special. On Thursday, her actual birthday, we started the day by all climbing into bed together and cozy-ing up. Which led to Edie jumping on the bed, which then led to Edie mimicking Dave's snores, which concluded with Edie pushing Dave and saying "Wake up, Dad!" We all went downstairs and Edie opened presents (wearing her favorite hat, of course).
With her trusty sidekick, "Guy"
She's a pro at ripping off wrapping paper
Eric got in on the action, too
Eric gave Edie a new puzzle board with numbers (she already knows them all!). Dave and I gave her a new jacket, a bunch of "little French girl clothes," (ie: striped shirts and skinny jeans) a new set of cars and trucks (her favorite!) and a doctor's kit, which included a little pager with the message "Doctor, doctor, give me the news..." She's been chasing us around the house for days, looking in our ears, giving us pretend shots, and telling us to say "Ah."
Dr. Edith on the case - and yes, we did give her the initials ECG in hopes she might be Dr. ECG someday.
Later in the day, we dropped off some holiday donations to needy kids, visited Santa, and had a very special birthday lunch. Edie had a Belgian waffle with whipped cream, chocolate milk, some of Dave's toast and a few of my french fries. She also picked out a piece of chocolate cake with chocolate-chip ice cream for dessert. She blew out the candles after an off-key rendition of "Happy Birthday."
On Saturday, we had a nice party for family and close friends. I know Edie probably won't remember any of it, but I think she'll appreciate the fact that we always tried to make her feel special when she's older. Because Edie loves to go to the fair so much, we did a "County Fair" theme. I tried to create a menu that featured spins on classic fair food, with decor to match.
Dessert buffet - mini pies, candies, candied apples, and of course, cake
Mini blueberry and cherry pies
Yum, birthday cake. It was an old-fashioned butter cake with chocolate chips, and classic white buttercream frosting
Savory options - Pigs in blankets, potato chips, onion rings, sausage sandwiches and kettle corn (in lieu of corndogs, bloomin' onions and french fries)
For decorations, I made a twisted felt garland I strung along the ceiling as well as a simple fabric pennant banner. I removed the dining room painting that hangs over the buffet and replaced it with three pictures of Edie - one when she was a few days old, one from her first birthday, and one from her birthday this year.
Felt garland taped to the ceiling fan - classic
Edie really enjoyed it when everyone sang to her. She clapped and bounced on the chair, and worked really hard to blow out her candle.
Next up: Presents. Edie was very generously gifted beautiful clothes, new musical instruments, lots of art materials, more cars and trains, and a new tricycle (she can't quite reach the pedals yet, so we'll just put some blocks on them).
Edie loves to ring the bell on her new tricycle
By the time everyone left, we were all pretty exhausted.
But not so tired that we couldn't take baths and go for one last trike ride of the night.
It was such a nice day. There were a couple of hiccups along the way (I had set up a "photobooth" in the office, but of course, the batteries on my other camera were dead), but I'd count the party as a success. Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves, and Edie had a great time playing with her cousins and friends. We had family and friends travel from near and far (some driving nearly six hours round trip!), and it's nice to know that we have people in our lives who care that much about us. Both of my grandmothers (Edie and Eric's only living great-grandmothers) were able to make it, which was such a special treat. The whole day made me thankful for so much. I'm especially thankful:
- For kids who know to share without being told
- That my grandmothers get along really well and can make the two-hour trek to the farm together
- That my whole family lives in the same town and I can visit them all at once when I go home
- For parents who always come early to help, let me boss them around and still give me hugs and tell me they love me
- That my in-laws care enough to make the trip (also two hours one-way from their town in CT), even with little kids in tow and when under the weather
- For our childless friends who still come to our kids' parties, and never complain about us being those parents
- For friends with kids that understand how hard it is to be a parent and help me along the way
- For friends that date guys with good photography skills and can easily entertain cranky kids by making funny sounds
- For loved ones who tell me what a great job I did with the party - even if the cake isn't frosted properly and not all the decorations made it on the walls
- That I have a babysitter who cares about my kids as much as she does her own
- That my husband typically tolerates my Martha Stewart-OCD antics and helps clean up at the end of the day
- That I'm able to provide for my kids' every need
I'm really lucky, as so thankful, that I'm able to provide these silly parties for Edie, and soon for Eric. I hope they never take for granted how good our life is.