On Saturday afternoon, after a morning spent baking a luridly coloured cake with Grace and a sticky at an auction in a nearby suburb, I stopped off at the big fruit shop (as opposed to being slack and just getting everything at safeway) where I bumped into a friend from a past life. Her children are a few years older than Grace and I mentioned I was shopping for a lunch to celebrate Grace's third birthday. I bet it's feels like it's gone really quickly, she said. Yeah, I guess it has, I replied and then went back to running around making last minute changes to the next day's menu and obsessing over whether the grapes were fresh and if the strawberries would taste of anything (yes and double yes). Later that night, as we wrapped presents, G and I talked about when Grace was a baby and how quickly she's growing up. How she comes and says, Mumma (or Daddy), I've got a big idea.... and her increasingly complicated play world. We both became quite sentimental and nostalgic. Although I want her to to grow up and take great joy in the unfolding of her world, there's also part of me that wants to hold onto all that she's been before. To still be able to hold her at my breast as an infant, on my hips as a one year old, to watch her bumshuffle and take her first steps.
Anyway, this is the first year that Grace has had any real sense of birthday consciousness. With anticpation. That it's all about her. She wanted balloons and a cake with ice.
Would you believe safeway ran out of balloons? Never mind, I eventually tracked some down and even if half of them had holes in them, they were a great hit. As was the cake. Especially the decorating of said cake, which we did together in the morning before she had a little nap. It was basically a plain cake with chocolate ripple in the middle for height. Grace hasn't quite got the hang of blowing out the candles, but she had a good go.
It was a lovely lunch, even if I do say myself. Grace really enjoyed the presents, possibbly the biggest hit were some small figurines from Nina and the card with three on it, and raced around afternoon. The happiness and light in her face during the happy birthday song was a joy to behold. Happy Birthday Grace!