Four is a lot of candles

Our fourth birthday celebration for Lucy was pretty standard as Boyd parties go — but very special for one little girl. See for yourself (and “then read on”:/news/2010/lucys-4th-birthday/):

But let’s roll back the tape several days. After much anticipation, Lucy’s birthday extravaganza was officially kicked off earlier in the week at preschool snack time. A few days before Lucy’s actual birthday, Mama got to volunteer at preschool and bring snacks, which included tiny purple cupcakes and one little candle. We tested out a new “vanilla cupcake recipe”: (which was fantastic — light and tender, my new favorite) and modified the cooking time for mini-cupcakes. Lucy’s request for purple frosting was granted, and we adorned the diminutive cakes with beautiful and maddening tiny, spherical, multi-colored sprinkles that rolled all over the floor at the slightest opportunity. They were delicious.

Lucy woke up in good spirits on her fourth birthday, delighted to enjoy a special doughnut-enhanced breakfast with the family — complete with the now-traditional birthday interview (see video above). Church was made extra-special by bringing along some tropical-fruit snacks to share with Lucy and Rosie’s Sunday School class as a birthday treat. Then we headed home and got serious about party preparations.

As has been our tradition, Lucy’s party was mainly for family and a few grown-up friends. (Maybe next year we’ll tackle a party for her peers.) After some yummy dips and cheese (thanks to Grammie!), we lit candles and sang for our girl. Lucy had a little trouble blowing out the candles this year, but we were impressed with her perseverance:

Then we dived into Lucy’s specially requested blueberry cake. I had found a “recipe”: for a cake made with pureed strawberries, but blueberries were easily substituted. Lucy chose the shocking shade of blue for the buttery frosting, and Jon adorned the edges with fresh blueberries. We also served some fabulous “layered brownies”: for the chocolate lovers among us, as well as “cookies”: in the shape of the number 4. (Don’t even ask me how many sticks of butter I went through this week!) Everyone had fun, and Lucy and Rosie did a particularly good job sharing their toys with each other — hooray for the sisters!

Lucy had a blast on her birthday, and I’m so glad for it — especially because I felt like I didn’t do an A+ job as the Mama that week. Somehow, my vision for cut-out cookies, homemade cake, brownies, and preschool cupcakes got a bit out of control and overshadowed my desire for loving, close relationships with my daughters. Not that anyone is the worse for wear from it, but I’m resolved to either trim down my baking vision or start it (and freeze it) much earlier next year. All I want is a clean house, homemade baked goods, and time to go to the park with my girls — is that too much to ask? Probably not, but it does require planning ahead!

4 Replies to “Four is a lot of candles”

  1. Wonderful memories of a precious family get-together. Keep those parties coming, complete with your special friends. Oh yes, don’t forget to keep those photos coming, also, so that the visual memories are sharp for all to share. Looks like we did quite a bit of damage to that cake along the way. HAPPY BIRTHDAY BIRTHDAY GIRL – you have my love forever…

  2. Looks like you did a pretty amazing job, there, momma! Stop giving yourself such a hard time. It amazes me how much we do, even those weeks that it feels like we fell short of our own expectations–by a mile. The nice thing is, nobody else’s expectations for us are usually as insane as our own, so they never know the difference when things don’t go as planned. :)

  3. Fabulous! The blueberry cake is gorgeous! Lucy is so grown up – sigh. 4 going on 14. Not that anyone is in a rush. :)
    I share your over-zealous baking ideas. This last birthday celebration for Eli we made a train cake and well, lets just say that I was still in my pj’s decorating the cake when our few close friends arrived. :) We literally decorated the cake, took loads of pictures, lite a candle, sang and then ate it. Hours of work destroyed in a matter of minutes. I chose to let myself stay in pj’s rather than freak out at my kids…though I’m afraid Nathan got the brunt of it anyway. :( So, I am totally empathizing with you and I always think next year we’re taking it down a notch. I do tend to take it down a notch – one notch in one area. Like no big party or no gazillion cupcakes for playgroup. But it still doesn’t seem to be enough. And then we have Solly’s first birthday coming up the week of Christmas! Gonna have to get real with myself about expectations and reign it in.

  4. I love the video of Lu blowing out her candles! Abby had the same problem with her candles too. :) The blue cake rocks! Abby determined that she wanted a pony cake that was red on the inside and pink on the outside, so what could I do but make red velvet. (Though it was slightly reminiscent of the infamous armadillo cakes of TX).

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