Our Ava Grace turned four today! I say it every year, but I can't believe it. Sure, we've accomplished and experienced a lot in the past year, but it seemst to have flown by. Ava could hardly sleep last night, the excitement was just too much for her to handle. She finally gave in to the sleepiness and conked out around 11 pm, only to wake up at 8 am exclaiming, "Today's my brithday." After which she told me that four makes her a big girl and big girls are allowed to eat cookies for breakfast. Unfortunately for her, the Mommy card trumps the birthday card and she had Trix for breakfast.
We planned an eventful day, first opening a few presents followed by dance, a special birthday phone call from G-Ma & G-Pa and a phone call from Snow White. That's right, a real Disney princess called to wish our princess a happy birthday. She was so shocked to hear the voice on the other end of the phone that she wasn't quite sure how to respond. Finally, the snapped to and told me she couldn't believe Snow White knew it was her birthday. Later in the day, she got calls from Daddy, Joey, Ms. Jennifer (my good friend), a treat from her buddy Dylan and a bedtime call from Grandma & Grandpa.
At home, our wonderful friends came over to play and make cupcakes. Ethan and Avery gave Ava an adorable mini-cupcake baking kit that she could barely wait to use. Fortunately for us, cupcakes were on our agenda.
Because you can never fit enough fun into one birthday, we made a trip to the park to play and soak in the nice weather.
To top the day off, we let Ava choose where she'd like to go for dinner -- so, Chuck E. Cheese's it was! Ethan, Avery, Joni, Bob, Uncle Dusty and Ava's dance buddy Isabelle and her mom and brother joined us for pizza, cupcakes and games (Ava and Jax are having an actual birthday party next month when all the family is in town for Andy's graduation). Ava loves to watch the little robotic animals perform the Chuck E. Cheese show, but when the real deal came out to wish her a happy birthday she freaked -- tears, trembling, clinging to my leg. I wasn't prepared for the reaction, but then I put myself in her shoes and realized that if I were four and a giant rat came at me waving his big, dirty paw at me, I'd probably be a little reluctant to run up and give him a hug. Jax wasn't a fan either. So, while the other kids gave fives and had their pictures taken with the Chuckster, mine looked on from afar. Although, by the end of the night both were willing to give him five.
Uncle Dusty taking a ride on the Monster Truck
Jax loved this monster truck until we put a token on and it started moving. The only way we could get him back in is if I went in with him
Of course, the boys playing a car game
After about an hour of games, the kids cashed in their tickets for prizes and we headed home. Jax was exhausted and went to bed immediately, but Ava was still running on cupcake fumes so she, Daddy, Uncle Dusty and I played a round of Yahtzee, Jr. Disney Edition. Ava is at the age now where she really enjoys playing games, so it's quickly become a nightly tradition for us to play a few rounds of Uno, dominoes, Candy Land or Chutes and Ladders before bed. Now, we've added Yahtzee to our repertoire.
When all was said and done Ava thanked me for a great birthday.
Wearing her new ladybug earrings from Daddy
She loved her presents, even wearing her new earrings from Daddy (it's a tradition) and loved spending time with her friends. I loved watching the excitement and joy on her face this entire day. She was just glowing. To be honest, I was actually a little sad putting her to bed tonight because it meant the day was coming to an end. We have to wait a whole year for another birthday. As a matter of fact, at the park Ava asked if she could go down the slide five more times because she's almost five. I'm still getting use to her being four and already she's looking forward to the next year.
We've had such a fun year watching Ava learn and grow. She's an amazing little girl! In the past year she's learned to write, started reading, excelled at dance, joined a soccer team, become interested in dinosaurs, geography and sea creatures. There's so much more, so much has happened. I mean a year is a long time. At least it's supposed to be, but it seems that as my kids get older the years go faster. A friend of mine commented today on my Facebook page that she remembers the day Ava was born (my friend was at the hospital). I remember it too, I mean when I really think about it, I do. But, so much has happened these last four years that the day she was born seems like a little twinkle in time. Ava has kept me busy, she's kept me happy, she's humbled me and she's reminds me every day why, when she was just a week old, I made the decision to be a stay-at-home mom. Because, so much has happened in the last four years that I couldn't imagine missing a single moment of it.
Happy birthday, Little Squish! We love you!!!!