Sunday, July 19, 2015

Clara Turns 3.

We threw Clara a birthday party this past Friday. I know that everyone says it but I literally cannot believe Clara has been in our lives for THREE years...three years 9 months if you count womb time. How is it even possible?  I look back at pictures and see how small Clara once was and think: "How long ago was that?" It feels like last week.

I tried to compare the passage of time to other three-year long intervals in my life.

11 to 14?  Interminable waiting to be older coupled with knife-sharp growing pains. Felt like forever.

18 to 21? Most of college - intensely studying while trying to have fun and make friends. Flew on a plane for the first time. Studied abroad. Less angsty than high school but time certainly slowed down while I navigated the murky waters of social interaction with my peers.

Six weeks from now I will give birth to my second child. If Clara was born yesterday, how is this possible?

Back to the party.  Clara's friends with their parents (a.k.a adult friends) in tow, and other friends and both sides of the family gathered to celebrate.  Clara loves all things doll/stuffed animal/and princess...much to the delight of my twin sister who loved all these things when we were children while I ran away screaming looking for a board game or an encyclopedia to read. My mother always invented elaborate games for our birthday parties as kids, and in that same spirit I planned a Princess Scavenger Hunt for the kiddies while trying to keep the pink princess frou-frou aspect to a minimum.

Here is what the kids had to find:

Princess Tiana's Frog - a delightfully squishy, slimy toy frog. (would probably stick to the wall if thrown,  like those crawling octopi  I used to love as a child)

Princess Ariel's Shell - A seashell whistle. (Surprisingly, it made a pure, pretty tone.)

Snow White's Apple - a plastic apple with a toy insect inside. (Clara's cousin Cricket actually found a cricket in hers)

Cinderella's Pumpkin - a plastic pumpkin with a stuffed toy mouse inside. ( big hit with the three year old set, who loved finding other things to fit in the pumpkin and the, close...repeat)

Tinkerbell's Pixie Dust - a plastic egg filled with iridescent slime.  (this was like  drugs to the three year olds. Each one of them carried around the slime for at least an hour.  One little girl made herself a bracelet out of it.)

Elsa's Wand - A light up snowflake wand. (I know...I KNOW.  Elsa doesn't have a wand...but we can't exclude Frozen from our repertoire, Disney would revoke my parent card)

Abandoned Tinkerbell Slime.
The kids spent the remainder of the time running around like loons. Clara got over excited and wiped out at one point, needing many kisses and band aids. Gerald and I walked around talking to adults while Clara disappeared into the pack of roaming children. Many hot dogs, chips and dip, and cupcakes were enjoyed by all.  The three year old's eyed each other to see who would be the first one brave enough to request a second cupcake before the firsts' sugar high kicked in. 
Wish time.

Should I ask or just take another?

 While opening her gifts Clara reveled in ripping open the paper. She then proceeded to look at the revealed gift for exactly 3.5 seconds before saying: "Let's open another one."


All in all, it was a great day. Gerald and I could see how special Clara felt when everyone sang her Happy Birthday and she got to blow out the candle.

I don't think there's anything better than throwing a birthday party for a child. It's all new and amazing to them. (Even if I don't quite believe that we've just celebrated her third birthday)

Happy Birthday, Princess.

Some of the guests...

Charlie and Marek.
Me and Lauren.

Skip, Jason, and Susan.
Samantha, Becky and I.

The satisfied parents.

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