Well, after all the drama and excitement of Christmas, it was soon time to move on to birthday celebrations for Lilly.
It began with a special birthday outing to Thomas Land at Drayton Manor – something I’ve just posted a separate blog post about because we had such a fabulous time!
Unfortunately on her birthday itself, Daddy had to go to work at 11.30am, but we spent a fun morning together opening presents. Lilly slept really well the night before, even though Isla had woken at 4am and disturbed her, Lilly had just gone straight back to sleep and woke up again after 7am.
The night before, we had hung birthday banners and balloons, and taken down all the Christmas cards and decorations (except the tree). The birthday cards were all waiting on the doormat. We came down in the morning to find all the presents on the sofa, as well as a new bike standing in the middle of the lounge!
After a little try on the bike, Lilly started opening presents which included Tumble Tots accessories (lummy sticks, beanbags, ribbons and an action rhyme dvd), Postman Pat playset, alphabet jigsaw, set of Maisy books, Zingzillas album and a Roary Nintendo DS game.
While she was doing it, Tony had a quick scan of the first of the CBeebies birthday cards that we had recorded. I’d made Lilly a card six weeks ago and sent it in. And hers was the very first one shown on the day! Much excitement! The card was Same Smile themed, with the three pandas, Mish, Moosh and Mogo from the programme on it, and Lilly 3 written in silver glittery lettering. And the presenter, by chance, was Nisha from Same Smile itself, which added to the excitement! Lilly watched it, and then gave me a great big hug! I asked her: “Where you expecting your card to be on CBeebies?” and she just shrugged and nodded, as if to say: “Of course I was! It is my birthday, after all!”
After that she had a little try on the bike outside (not all together successful, there was still a little bit of adjustment needed to the saddle height) and then time for singing Happy Birthday and blowing out candles. I had made Lilly a chocolate fudge cake, with a 3 on it in Smarties. All morning, Lilly was asking: “Did you make me a chocolate cake mummy? Can I have my chocolate cake now, mummy? Can I see my chocolate cake now mummy?” So it was quite eagerly anicipated and hopefully lived up to expectations!
In the afternoon, after Tony went to work, Nanna minded Isla while I took Lilly to Chester Zoo, where we have annual passes. The visit started with fish chips and beans in the cafe, followed by a trip through the bat cave (where I noticed properly for the first time just how bloody big those things are!) and the monkeys, before a ride on the monorail (we went in carriage number 3, in honour of Lilly’s age).
After that we visited the lions, then the reptile house and, lastly, the butterfly house, Lilly’s favourite. But this time, a small semi-see through butterfly took a liking to Lilly and landed on her – first on her hand and then on her coat. Lilly didn’t like it one bit and stood there paralysed, crying: “I don’t like him! Get him off meeeeee!” much to the amusement of other visitors (and me!). Afterwards she told me the problem was “he was too fluttery”.
Then it was back home and round to Nanna’s where Lilly opened more presents before Daddy arrived home early in time for bedtime stories.
Today we have been enjoying a little birthday party at our house for family. We’ve had an 80s style birthday buffet, with sandwiches, sausages on sticks, wotsits, party rings, chocolate fingers and animal biscuits, as well as more birthday cake. We played Pass the Parcel and Pin the Tail on the Donkey (Lilly won both, and although Pass the Parcel was rigged, she was scarily good at pinning the tail on the donkey!) and enjoyed a few games of Thomas The Tank Engine Bingo (one of her Christmas presents).
All in all a lovely day and one that has left us all shattered, not least Lilly. For the last hour before bed she was so tired she hardly spoke. She cuddled up on the sofa with one of Isla’s blankets and watched The Snowman DVD.
Tomorrow we are going over to my mum’s for more presents and to take her new bike for its inaugural ride.
And after that, all the Christmas and birthday excitement will be over for a while and normal life will have to resume!