The night before Baby Bean's birthday her dad and I had made a deal, if she came to sleep with me in the middle of the night, she would get to sleep in (because I was still on leave for my surgery). But if she stayed in her own room, he would get her up and take her to school. Much to my pleasure, she came and slept with me, which meant I had her to myself all day.
First we went to her daycare for her "Celebration of Life." We took in a poster showcasing her 3 years on the planet. They had a little performance where Baby Bean walked around "the sun" (a candle in the middle of a circle) three times. Around the sun were the names of every month. Each time she went around, the other kids would sing a special song, and then she had to stop next to her birth month. Each time she stopped, her teacher read a fun fact about that year of BB's life that I had written up. Afterward the kids got to look at her poster after she picked them to go wash their hands, and then she got to hand out her treats.
For lunch I took her to one of our favorite Italian restaurants that is next to this really cool fountain she loves. It was a nice day, so we were able to sit outside where we could see said fountain.
After lunch we went and picked up her bouquet of Princess balloons and a birthday crown.
The only part of the day that made me cry came next: her first official hair cut. We have managed to make it 3 years without cutting her hair. It never fell out after birth, and I can prove it by a colored patch at the ends of her hair, so everything on the ends was what grew in the womb. BB did a great job. Actually, she could care less. They popped in a D.ora video and BB was gone. As the lady took the first snip, to my surprise, big crocodile tears streamed down my face.
After the haircut it was nap time, and when we got up, I had just enough time to clean the house before grandma came. BB opened presents from her grandparents, great aunts, and us (it was like Christmas again with all the gifts), and then we took her to dinner at her favorite restaurant, R.ain F.orest C.afe where we had a big dinner that could not compare to the volcano brownie we had for dessert.
The following Saturday was BB's birthday party. We spent much of the day getting ready for it on top of doing our regular Saturday activities. The cake turned out so awesome. Just in case you don't want to watch the slide show, here is a picture.
Her birthday party was a success. Almost everyone who had been invited came. Each child who was old enough to paint got their own 8X10 canvas to paint with acrylic paints. They were supposed to paint cupcakes according to the directions given to them by the instructor. She did her best to make sure each child painted the way they were supposed to by only giving them the colors they needed as they needed them, and walking around and helping each child. My baby, however, has always marched to the beat of her own drum, and so her cupcake turned out a little more abstract.
I actually think it looks pretty cool, and intend to have it framed. Yes, I am a proud, proud mama.
The kids had a great time. They rough housed a little, ate pizza and cake, and had just plain had fun. After that night, however, I have vowed to never have a birthday party at my house! I just don't do well in such chaotic situations, so it was good that the art center had so many things to keep the little ones occupied. I can't imagine having all of those kids running around my house and trying to keep them all corralled. This is one of those cases where I am willing to shell out to have the birthday party somewhere else so that everyone, including me, can really enjoy it.
My little girl is one very loved little bean. She got some very thoughtful presents from everyone, and it meant so much to me because of the struggles I went through for my baby. Not only will she always know how much she is loved and wanted by mom and dad, but by our families and friends as well. Each present warmed my heart. Some of the things she got were:
- A Sn.ow White dress from my parents along with a dress-up doll, church coloring book and crayons, a magnetic Noah's Ark set (also for church), and a little bear that blows kisses and says, "I love you."
- From my husband's mother she got a Ru.punzel-like dress and wooden princess puzzles. But the best gift from this grandma was that she flew in just for BB's birthday. We were so glad she came and spent the evening with us. It made it so special for BB.
- My husband's aunts gave BB all kinds of sports toys, a S.noopy golf set, a bowling set, and a football.
- My sister sent her a wooden paper doll set with magnetic clothes that is absolutely adorable.
- From my friends and BB's she got 4 Barbies, coloring books, a couple more wood paper dolls with magnetic clothes (I love these things!), a chocolate-scented dog (that I have claimed as my own), some wooden boxes to paint and decorate, a couple of story books, and a few other things.
It was a great birthday, and oddly, I was just as excited for all of it as Baby Bean was. Even though I am sad she is growing up so fast, there is nothing that makes me happier than seeing my baby so excited and happy.
If you want, here is the slideshow I created of the two days of festivities, set to some really fun music (because I'm awesome like that).