This year has by far been the most exciting of Benjamin's three birthdays. I LOVE birthdays and I love that the excitement of them is being passed on to him. I remember laying in bed before my fifth birthday and not being able to go to sleep because I was so excited. And I remember the year my dad got me this huge warehouse size pack of gum as one of my gifts. We were only allowed to chew it on Sundays and special occasions, so it must have gone stale before I finished it, but it is a fun birthday memory. But back to Benjamin. He's been talking about his birthday off and on for the past month two months. It was about two months ago that I asked him what kind of cake he wanted this year. He told me he wanted an HEB cake, which of course made me miss Texas, but even if we'd been there, I wouldn't have bought his cake. Then, a while later, after our conversations had moved on to other things, he suddenly told me he wanted a cement mixer cake. I made a train cake for his first birthday and it was no small feat for me, but I just couldn't imagine how I was going to make a cement mixer cake. So we came up with a construction themed cake instead. Benjamin and I went to the party store and he helped me pick things out. Just seeing his excitement made me want to buy the whole store. It also made me realize that this may be the last themed party we do because they are crazy expensive. But this year was construction themed, so we had caution tape, balloons, construction hats, and other fun decor. And I made a construction themed cake complete with several plastic trucks, but unfortunately lacking in the cement mixer department. Apparently those are not considered part of the construction sets when they make them available for purchase. Anyway, this year was different than the past two because our families were able to come for his party. We had a beautiful hot sunny day and had his party at the park. Benjamin could hardly keep his hands off the cake and we kept having to tell him to wait to open presents, but it was still a lot of fun for him. This was the first year he was fully aware of the fact that the day was all about him and I loved watching him experience it.
Since we celebrated his party a few days earlier than his actual birthday, I wanted to make sure the day itself was special too. He and I spent the morning playing games and then met daddy for lunch at McDonalds. Back when we were in San Antonio and living in our house while trying to sell it, I'm embarrassed to say that we often went there at least once a week and sometimes more if we had last minute showings. But, since we've moved, life has been a little less hectic and we really haven't eaten lunch out much at all. I think it had been almost two months since Benjamin had had McD's. (As a side note, I totally think the whole lawsuit against McD's for putting toys in their happy meals is ridiculous. It's the play area that draws my kid and none of the McD's here have them. (side side note, even if McD's is totally unhealthy, you have to be a kid every once in a while, and I really wish there were play areas at the McD's here) ) ANYWAY, he was pretty excited about his food and seeing daddy at a restaurant for lunch, so it was fun. To finish off a fun day for him, we spread sheets out in the living room and got pizza and ate it while we watched Veggietales. We had planned to let him sleep in the living room and do sort of a family camp out, but he was antsy and just wouldn't stay still long enough to go to sleep. We finally took him to his room around 10 and he almost seemed relieved and was asleep within minutes. Maybe we'll try the family camp out another year. :)