It’s been a busy couple of weeks!
On September 1, Zoe turned NINE years old!! As we’ve done every year since she was 5 years old (I can’t believe it myself, but I have all the videos to prove it!), we headed to Miceli’s, an old school Italian restaurant where the waiters are all singers and perform for the whole restaurant in between serving tables. In fact, this year we had the SAME server who sang Happy Birthday to her 2 years ago, which of course I had to let him know – you know, so he’d have a chance to up his game. No pressure.
So let’s start out with his first song from 2 years ago (which was awesome – just look at Zoe’s face!), when she turned 7:
Yes, of course I showed him that video in advance to let him know what he was up against. And then, he pulled off this one:
I think he rocked it. Most importantly, Zoe agreed.
Also, as happens pretty much every year, we had a long weekend to celebrate Zoe (thanks to Labor Day) and Grandma Ruth, with whom she shares her birthday. So birthday dinner was on Friday night; on Saturday we spent all day at the Natural History Museum and California Science Center (another blog post entirely); and on Sunday our friends, Maggie & Gary, hosted a Labor Day party, where their daughters baked this incredible cake to celebrate Zoe AGAIN:
What a birthday, right?! And OMG, in one short year, she’ll be in double digits. I can hardly think about it…
Up next: Ella’s birthday. Just over 2 weeks later we have to deliver another birthday WOW, this time for Ella (whose birthday is on September 16). To start, Bart brought blue frosted cookies, as Ella requested, and small gifts to school for her classmates on Friday.
That night we took her to dinner. While we don’t yet have a “ritual” restaurant for Ella, last year she and I went to our favorite sushi restaurant, Miya Sushi. We call them Arigato Gozaimasu since every time we leave I beg the kids to shout that (it means “Thank You So Much” in Japanese) – plus, everyone there is super nice. This year, she wanted the same, with the whole family. So maybe a tradition is forming?
While I failed to capture a video of that singing event (I was too busy enjoying it!), we kicked off Ella’s Birthday Weekend right. For her birthday she had asked for twin baby dolls, so Zoe could have one, too, and much of the weekend has been spent with those two little girls feeding and swaddling babies. I do not miss that.
Though this will be the second year we’re not hosting a big party (we’re going on a Disney cruise instead – thanks, Mom!), I was determined for this not to be the FIRST year I failed to guilt my husband into baking a birthday cake. And so, I stacked the deck.
I coaxed our eldest daughter into searching the Internet with me for the perfect cake for this year (and intentionally searched for “easy birthday cakes” to reduce the chance of resistance from the baker). Zoe enthusiastically picked this one:
It was actually super fun to make, though my proud husband insisted on making homemade buttercream frosting and using Funfetti cake mix instead of the weird Jello choice in the recipe. He even patiently showed Zoe how to make everything (and conned her into holding the mixer…) I’m sure he’s just trying to get out of making a cake every year, but what do I care?
Drumroll please, this year’s birthday cake:
Not too shabby, right? Though it’s not even Ella’s ACTUAL birthday yet, I feel confident we have two little girls who’d say they feel special on the day(s) of their birth.