Thursday, April 3, 2014

Finn's Fourth Birthday

Finn started counting down the days until his birthday right around Christmas.  (Perhaps even before Christmas had past.)  Frequently, he discussed what presents he wanted to receive on his birthday: Trains that can move on their own!  Front loader for the sandbox!  Well in advance of the actual date, he made sure I knew what kind of cake he wanted.  (Chocolate.)  I started to feel some pressure.

If you have been around these parts long enough, you have no doubt concluded (rightly) that we are pretty laid back when it comes to celebrations.  (Another description could also be "hastily thrown together at the last minute.")  I started to think that this M.O. wasn't going to fly this year, so I did a little advance planning.  Now, before you think that you are going to see some Pinterest or blog post worthy ideas come forth, let me disabuse you of that notion right now.  This is still *me* we are talking about.  What I was looking for were some really easy birthday traditions that could make the day special and were simple to repeat year after year.  I polled friends on Facebook and searched the internet.  Here is the list I came up with:


  • Decorate door (this is something my roommates always did to me on my birthday, and I loved it.  It included pictures of things I was really into at the time (Mr. Knightly) and funny quotes that I had said.  I love the idea of doing something similar.  However, this idea will have to wait until my children stop waking up multiple times during the night, which may be never.)
  • Birthday balloon on child's chair*
  • Birthday banner*
  • Special meals*
  • Special birthday plate*
  • Skype/Facetime with family*
  • Treasure hunt for presents
  • Find all the hidden 4's (or birthday year)


The stars indicate the ideas I actually implemented.  I conned politely asked my sister in-law if she would be interested/available in making a birthday banner, which she did.  It turned out wonderful, and I am excited to have something that we can use over and over again.  I ordered a special birthday plate off of Etsy--a generic one that we can use for everyone's birthday.  I made special birthday pancakes (with chocolate chips!) and made a the requested dinner: quesadillas.  And of course, we had chocolate cake**.  The best part of the birthday however was the extra time Finn got to spend with his dad.  Mr. F. took the afternoon off so that he and Finn could spend the time playing with his new train set.

In the end, I think we did a decent job of making the day special.

 






**A note about the cake.  The cake is a chocolate loaf cake from Smitten Kitchen.  I served it with fresh berries and whipped cream.  However, I imagine Finn looking at the picture of this cake in 10-15 years time and saying, "Really mom? You couldn't splurge for some decoration on that cake?  Didn't I even merit frosting?"  And honestly, I wouldn't blame him.  Especially as I used to, in the not-so-distant-past, make cakes like this.  I was the resident birthday cake baker for my lab group.  To be completely honest, I have never been a fan of frosting.  It is too sweet.  Also, you have to put a lot more on than what I actually want to eat so that the cake looks nice.  I actually prefer plain cake with a dollop of unsweetened whipped cream.  Unfortunately, what I prefer looks lame.  

2 comments:

Angela said...

I think his birthday sounds fantastic! I think all that really matters is that the person feels special and I think you DEFINITELY achieved that! Score one point for awesome parenting! :) I am happy I was able to make the banner for you guys.

Kari said...

OMG your cakes for the lab were EPIC. :) But the chocolate loaf cake with fresh berries and whipped cream sounds pretty darn awesome too. Nice job D!

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