Friday, December 30, 2011

His Special Day

In our home, December 27 is not a wind down from the excitement of Christmas. Instead, it's a wind up for yet another day of celebrating! Micah is our Christmas baby and this year he turned four.

Nana was still in town visiting so she was able to spend the day with our family, which was wonderful. Each birthday, the kids get to choose a fun family activity and a special meal. Micah's choice: Discovery Place for the morning and Taco Bell for dinner. (I tried my bestest to nudge him in a different direction for dinner, but he had his mind set on $0.89 tacos!)
For as many times as we've visited Discovery Place, it's still a favorite for the boys. The don't seem to tire of the hands-on exhibits and are always interested to see the few animals on display that they can touch. This time Annalyse was able to walk and explore on her own, too. I think last time we were there she was toddling while holding on to a hand, but this time she was off and running in whatever direction the rest of us were not going.
Grady Lee was enthralled with a 3D movie about dolphins (you know, the hug-a-tree-and-save-the-world kind of movie). In fact, his hands were up and waving a few times because he thought he could reach out and actually touch a dolphin.
Annalyse lasted about seven minutes before she was bored of the dark theater and wanted to walk around. Micah joined us in the kids exploration room next door and kept her entertained until the movie was finished.
I'm usually at museums by myself with the kids, so having Grady and my mom-in-law made for a super relaxed couple of hours at Discovery Place. I didn't have to be in three places at once. I didn't have to push a stroller and hold hands. I didn't have to answer questions while fishing through the diaper bag for Cheerios.
My, oh my! Check out this brave new four year old laying on a bed of nails! In past visits Micah has been too afraid to give this a try, but this time he announced, "I'm four now and I'm stronger and tougher today so I want to lay on the nails."
And speaking of being stronger and tougher, look at this extreme heave-ho from Mr. Four Year Old himself!
We took turns "blasting into outer space," or so Grady Lee pretended. The boys spent a long time making tinfoil and ductape creations. Annalyse spend a long time roaming and exploring and that meant Nana spent a long time chasing and doting on her every whim. Grady and I? We spent a long time on a bench by the boys. This was a once in a million chance to enjoy a museum and be relaxed.
After a quick lunch, we popped umbrellas to brave a light mist and walk two blocks to some Christmas displays in Uptown.
The boys enjoyed the covered walkways where they could "walk on top of the cars and buses and see everything from way up high!"
They also enjoyed relaxing in various arboretums with "squishy and cozy couches."
We stopped to see the life-size gingerbread house in the lobby of the Ritz Carlton, where I held my breath that it wouldn't be my kid who was responsible for the unfortunate collapse of this beautiful piece of baked goodness. After lots of "Why can't I open the door and go inside?" and "How come you won't let me lick it to taste it?" we moved on to Christmas destination number two.
The Berstein Bears, an orchestra of computerized bears that sing and dance and play instruments, gave us a Christmas concert. The boys joined several kids up front and stood as close as possible to see and listen. I think I even saw Grady Lee attempt a few dance moves, but when he remembered he was up front of all the onlookers he quickly stopped and was slightly embarrassed.
When dinnertime rolled around, Micah was still set on Taco Bell, so off we went for some yummy (highly debatable) tacos and quesadillas. Funny fact: this particular Tao Bell is brand new and had its grand opening on Micah's birthday. The dear boy truly thinks that Taco Bell "opened today because they know it's my birthday and this is where I wanted to come!" Whatever. If it adds joy to your day. Whatever.
After dinner it was time for you know what: presents! That's the highlight of birthdays and this kid waited all day for his special moment of opening gifts. Annalyse was eager to help and Micah stayed patient and sweet while she did her best to grab gifts and open them for him.
Look at that smile of pure delight! I love it. Happy smiles and shouts of "just what I wanted!" over the simplest of toys.
Thanks Alaina and Olivia for the very loud police car with very bright flashing lights that drives by itself and crashes into walls and furniture. Micah loves it, and I'm sure Aunt Sarah has a sly grin because she picked the winning toy and doesn't have to listen to it! (*smile*)
When everything was opened it was time to put the road ripping, wheelie popping motorcycle and the flashing and ringing police car to the test. Back and forth and back and forth across the kitchen floor. In fact, both toys are currently parked in my kitchen and I think will be a permanent fixture until the newness wears off. "They race faster on the kitchen floor than they do on the toy room carpet, mom."
Happy Birthday to you. Happy Birthday to you! Happy Birthday, dear Micah. happy Birthday to you!
Gooey, chocolaty goodness to the last crumb! Grady Lee inhaled his; Annalyse smeared and played with hers; Micah licked all the frosting off his; and yours truly enjoyed one with the kids and then two more once they were in bed. Hey, there's no wrong way to each a cupcake(s)!
So birthday party number one drew to a close. Micah hugged me tight and told me "today was almost as fun as Christmas and I love having it be my birthday," which I think means he had a good day. Next weekend he'll enjoy a small party with some friends... the birthday presents and cake continues.


  1. Happy Birthday to my little man! I love ya buddy, and am super proud of my Big 4-Year-Old!!

  2. Let me just say that Heather Vail would have joined that sweet 4-year old at Taco Bell - one of her absolute favorite restaurants...if you can call it that :) Happy Birthday, Micah!!!

  3. Grandpa loves the Micah man as well. I coudln't be more proud of a grand son!

  4. Love the pic of him eating his cupcake. What a fun special day for Micah!!! ;-) Mom...seriously, three cupcakes??? Come should've shared some over here!!! Micah,you have gotten the "birthday-spreading-out-to-last-two-weeks" down pat! Way to go, bro!!!