Today is Markus's birthday!
Every morning when we get dressed, Ellie wants to know where we'll be going. I told her it is Papa's birthday, so we needed to buy groceries for his birthday cake and birthday dinner. We also needed to make decorations. She put her hand up and said, "I'll make the decorations. I'll be in my study." Okay then.
Given my oh-so-prepared nature (ha-ha!), nothing was done in advance. That meant we had a big list to tackle today. We started with the decorations. First we dug out some letters from the foam floor tiles we bought in Qatar and took pictures with them. That can always be an adventure:
In my view, the more random, the better. When we were all done, we had this:
Just so you can see how much things change in 12 months, look at last year's birthday sign:
Amazing! Ellie looks so little! And she was still flying solo in the kiddie department.
Today, she timed her pre-nap-meltdown at such a location and decibel that she ensured baby Stephanie didn't nap at all (tantrum outside baby Stephanie's room 15 minutes after she'd fallen asleep sealed the deal). Instead, Ellie slept soundly while exhausted baby Stephanie fussed and cried for over 2 hours. By the time Ellie woke up ready to party, the house was still a mess, the groceries were still at the store, the cake wasn't baked, and I had one miserable baby in my arms and another wild child to manage. Somehow we made it to and from the grocery store in one sane little package, cleaned up the kitchen, ate a snack, and had the place looking party-ready before Markus came home (just please disregard Stephanie's snack debris under the table).
Papa got his usual huge smiley welcome when he came through the door. He took the girls to the playground while I baked the cake and cooked dinner. By the time they returned, everything was ready and everyone was happy. Dinner was yum, the decorations made him smile, and the birthday was a good one! Happy Birthday, Markus! We love you!