Her due date was on my oldest child’s birthday. Her birthday wish was not to share her birthday with her baby sister. I understood. I think willed that baby to be a week late. Because you know, us women have those powers sometimes. And officially one week past my oldest girls’ birthday, we celebrate my youngest girls’ birthday. The five year age span offers no opportunity for shared parties. But that’s ok. Celebrating a four year old was so sweet and refreshing this year, as I savor every bit of little girl from this baby of the family.
After a big kid roller skating party, my youngest gave me a chance to host the perfect backyard party with classic birthday games, mama sewn skirts, little kid friends from school and best buds from the neighborhood. She’s never had a big birthday party. The last three years, it’s been a small gathering at home (which I posted about those here, and here) with one or two friends. It’s really good that way. Not overwhelming at little ages. For her first birthday, is was a simple homemade cheese cake and a large bucket of mini pumpkins to throw all over the floor. But this year she wanted to invite school friends. And I thought it was time I thew this girl a proper celebration. Just for her. This third child of mine.
This meant two birthday parties with in the same three days! But it was so worth it! I loved every sweet moment watching her at her party, filled with joy and glee to share it with her her little buddies. And the fact that it was just for her – fitting her personality and not just reusing things from sisters old parties. Which will always be a challenge given it’s so easy to leave up the same party festivities from one party to the next, a few days later. But I didn’t want to do that this time.
The girl was very specific about what she wanted. Her requests were: to have her bounce house (a gift from last year), decorate cupcakes, play games and invite her friends from school.
For games we bobbed for apples, tossed a ball into buckets, did bean bag toss and played pin the nose on the pumpkin.
The prize table had fall themed stamps, stickers, tattoos, pencils, note pads, bouncy balls and lolly pops. It also served as the kids making their own treat bags to take home. The older girls loved helping out with leading the games, giving prizes and setting up the area for the party. We even had a neighborhood sixth grader and her friend come over and offer to help with the party. They decorated, hung banners and blew up gallons – simply placeing them at kid level, precicely matching their perception of life. I love this. I love the age spans with the girls and that older children find comfort and fun in a four year old birthday party happening in our backyard. It warms my heart.
My little munchkin went to a party recently at a cup cake bakery where they decorated cupcakes. She wanted to do the same. We had plain cupcakes with several different colored sugars and sprinkles to choose from for the kids to decorate them. That was fun!
The zip line in the backyard was a hit with ALL the kids.
Opening presents with friends was a thrilling first for her. It was so sweet how big sis sat by, reading all her cards to her and helping with with tough ribbons to get undone. Again, this makes me so LOVE the five year age difference in them. Even if it means two parties in three days!
It also makes me appriciate this four-year-old age where girls still want boys at the party. Such a relief! And when you go to take a group photo you get something funny, that is sure to be memorable.
This was our classic, home made invitation with fabric that matched her birthday skirt. As well as the table cloth I sewed for the gift table. BECAUSE I just love doing stuff like this, and I know one day this little girl will get too big for it. So I live up when I can!
I removed my address and phone number, for the sake of privacy, to post here.
On the real day of her birthday, she had her first Walk Around the Sun at school. It’s a traditional in the Montessori classroom where students walk around a lit candle representing the sun, while holding a globe representing the earth, for the number of years they have been on earth. While doing so the teacher shares photos and stories of the child’s life. We have a tradition with our girls of creating a book for the 3-6 years that spans their life since birth. For her birthday, this year I made her first book for her.
And she went on her way to school, the day she turned FOUR!
That evening we celebrated at home, with something new and special just to be used for her birthdays, making it something different coming right after her sister’s. And with a special surprise cake for the girl who doesn’t drink the hot chocolate but only wants to eat the marshmallows.
After cake and presents at home, I tucked my birthday girl into bed and told her about the night she was born. Telling her all the beautiful details about her birth and the moment we met. It’s a birthday tradition here and it continues every year, with every child. And as the years go by, they love it more and more. And so do I.
Happy Birthday big four year old!