So, in the midst of all my angst, self-loathing, and ridiculousness, Real Life keeps happening at my house, and my eldest daughter turned 10 almost two weeks ago now. Weird how life doesn’t stop, just because you want to wallow in self-pity for awhile.I am now the mother of two children in the double-digits. So, that’s cool. The big day dawned on October 22nd. Birthday pancakes were had, as usual. Gifts were opened, and our day was off to a lovely start as a family.
Funny story–funny as in “mildly interesting”–while I was making her pancakes, I lost control of the spatula, resulting in an accidentally heart-shaped pancake. Serendipitous pancake hearts always make for a nice start to a birthday, I think. It helped me to feel better, anyway.
A year or so ago, Lydia asked me if she could get her ears pierced. While I didn’t have any moral objections, I really felt like I wanted her to be old enough to be able to clean her own ears and take care of them herself, because that would be One Less Thing for me to do. We decided her 10th birthday would be as good a time as any.So, I made the appointment at a local pediatrician’s office for the day of her birthday. Why a doc’s office? In short, they use numbing cream first, have medical grade plastic studs and sterile equipment, and are not a tattoo parlor. Not that I object to tattoo parlors, but are they really an appropriate place for young children? Not so much.
She seemed nervous, but insisted she was fine. She knew ahead of time that it would hurt, and even though they used topical numbing cream, I told her she should expect it to still hurt at least a little. Apparently, it did, because after her first ear was finished, she started breathing deeply. Still, she got through it, and when she saw the results in a hand mirror, her face lit up! I may or may not have cried a little.
Afterward, we went straight to Claire’s, and she picked out the first set of earrings she could find that had a Pegasus! She loves winged horses, and draws them all the time. She also wanted some sushi earrings, but we couldn’t find any that day, so she picked out some cherries and starfish instead. She has very eclectic taste.Then, it was off to Dutch Brothers for her free birthday drink. Did you know they did that? I knew, but this is the first time I have taken advantage of it for the kids. I always forget stuff like that.
Frankly, every birthday for the children has been different, because I always end up doing whatever I feel like I am capable of doing. Still, for 10th birthdays, I try to make a big deal. The one traditional anchor we have is the birthday pancake tradition. If the kids remember nothing else, they will always remember birthday pancakes, so I try really hard not to worry too much about whether or not they have pinterest-worthy birthdays every year. (They don’t.)Since it was her 10th birthday, I decided to let her have her first official slumber party, but we couldn’t do it until this past weekend. She invited her three “BFF’s,” decided to go with a “Frozen” theme, and I made plans accordingly. Simple plans, based solely on how easy and cheap it would be for me to do. (Such pure motivations, I know!) We used fabric paint and stencils on cheap shirts from Target, and that’s the only activity I planned, besides watching “Frozen” and eating junk food.
The cake was a coconut cake, with coconut cream cheese frosting, topped with shredded coconut. (Recipe HERE.) It’s Lydia’s favorite flavor du jour. I also made rock candy from scratch for the first time, and it was a lot easier than I thought it would be, thank God. The girls helped me dip marshmallows in candy melts & sprinkles, and I also made confetti popcorn with Lydia’s choice of sprinkles. (You can visit my Pinterest account if you want to see where I got my ideas.)
So, that’s it. She’s 10 now, and I survived a slumber party.
What’s your family’s favorite birthday tradition?
Grace & Peace,
PS: I’m working on the angst thing, but I’m not going to pretend it’s not underlying everything I do right now.