Our T turned 5 a few days back. She is a very special girl and an immense blessing to our family. As a baby she slept like a rock forever and was nearly always content. Now as a young child T feels much empathy for people, is responsible beyond belief, loves to help, and adores her family so much that she adamantly states (with tears, if pressed) she will never NOT live with Dad and Mom! Oh, dear...to be five.
Earlier this week she touched me with her empathy. She received her five year old shots and didn't make much fuss, but clearly stated they hurt. Then she asked me if S was going to have shots soon to which I said "yes, in a few weeks". It was only then that she lost it. Her tears rolled and rolled as she sobbed that S was too little for that.
T is a very diligent and particular girl. On any given day one can find her suddenly emptying a whole closet or cabinet to which I used to ask what in the world she was doing. Now, however, I completely understand. "Mom, it was too messy. I am cleaning it all out!" Poor thing...she has two parents who are strongly melancholy. And it appears to Ryan and I that she single-handedly took a double dose of it.
Over the last few months we have been implementing new chores around here. The girls are both responsible for helping me clean a bathroom once a week. As a result, T can clean a whole bathroom on her own, except for the shower. In undertaking this with her I now plan on about forty minutes, fifteen dirty rags, and ten used QTips. And yes, the cleanest bathroom any five year old, or most adults, have ever cleaned! No, she is not for hire!
T delights in taking care of S, watercolors, dancing, singing, pretending with J, and helping out around the house. She surprises us with her balance of responsibility, maturity, and sensitivity. We look forward to her next year being filled with the discovery of books and reading as she is currently tackling this new ability head on. And we thank God for adding her to our family.
We celebrated her birthday on a weekend in which she was blessed to have a lot of extended family around. Ryan and his sister (who was visiting from CA) decorated our house the night before. T enjoyed getting ready for her big day by wearing her 'birthday dress' which is a new tradition we started. I took her to the fabric store and she picked out fabric, buttons, and ribbon for a fancy dress. This new tradition gives the girls some creative license and helps me stretch my sewing abilities.
Next, we all feasted on T's requested Cinnamon Rolls for breakfast. Check out Nikki's blog (look for recipes down on the right) for the recipe. Yes, it appears we are joining our friends in California with the same birthday breakfast tradition!
Soon, the guests arrived and she enjoyed a mid-day celebration. We all played a giant duck-duck-goose game and the kids tried to pin the tail on the bunny (her requested animal).
Then T opened some gifts and blessed Ryan and I with her very joyful reaction to her new doll crib which Ryan had built, I had sewed the bedding, and we had both painted. This blog is awesome for simple wood working plans (we have a plethora of birthday ideas from it)!
She enjoyed receiving new ballet clothes, a bag to take to dance and swimming class, pottery to paint (from her pen pal in Idaho, no less: she was beside herself with excitement for days that her friend had mailed her a gift) and adorable cooking attire.
Later she blew out the candle on one of her requested strawberry cupcakes with her aunt Kristen (whose birthday was a few days before). No recipe here! I am not a cupcake person nor do I pretend to be. I attempted various recipes (with disastrous results) in the days leading up to the party and the result was still much closer to poundcake than to cupcakes....but T liked decorating them with J so it worked out OK this time.