Benjamin's Happy Birthday today!

Today was Benjamin's birthday...his "happy birthday cake day". He has been looking forward to this day for months and he has had to endure Joe's and Josh's birthdays in the last couple of weeks. Now it is his day and it is finally here! It kind of started last night. We coaxed him to bed by telling him if he didn't go to sleep, his birthday wouldn't come. Well...it wouldn't!! That was successful. We've started a tradition several years ago of having breakfast in bed on the celebrate plate on your birthday. This is fun, and we don't miss. Hopefully something that will continue for a long time. sometimes the breakfast is lavish, sometimes creative, and sometimes pretty lame, especially when the pantry and refrigerator are bare. We've had to come up with some pretty interesting things on occasion. No matter what is served, it is always an anticipated event for everyone. Benjamin woke up at 4:00 am concerned that it may be time for his happy birthday cake. Daylight savings took effect today too, so I was not about to get up that early. I convinced him to crawl into bed next to me and just hoped that he was tired enough to go back to sleep. He did and that gave me the chance to get up later and make breakfast so that I would be ready. I didn't necessarily want to wake everyone up too early, so we just waited. Pretty soon he woke up, ran out to the kitchen and asked, "Is it time for my happy birthday cake?" to which I replied, "Happy birthday Benjamin! You better go crawl into your bed and wait for your happy birthday breakfast in bed." He did just that and we quickly got everyone else up and proceeded to walk into his room with a tray complete with celebrate plate holding two pancakes with whipped cream and a cherry, some yougurt a couple of strawberries, and a clementine holding a lit #3 candle, and a glass of grape juice. We sang "Happy Birthday" as we walked in and he layed as still as a brick on his bed. His back was to us, but as I sneaked around to his front to peek at his face, he was trying diligently not to smile. When everyone reached his bed, he sat up and said, "This is for me? For my happy birthday?" and acted surprised. He is so animated anyway and today he had a grin as big as the plate was. Typically at this point, all sibilings are on the bed asking for samples and encouraging the birthday child to bring his or her plate to the table so everyone can eat. Benjamin adamantly announced that today is his happy birthday and he would be eating HIS breakfast in bed, and he did! The cake had to wait until after lunch to his disappointment. He was understanding though. Grandma and Grandpa A came to have lunch with us and after lunch we cleaned up and then brought out the cake...a train cake that at best looked like a child's attempt of modeling clay. Tim says I just like making those cakes so I can buy the candy to decorate it and sample it all. There's probably some truth to that. He was one big Cheshire Cat grin. We sang again to him and then he attempted to blow out the candles. They went out, one at a time, but not really from air, mostly from spit. With all the candy adorning the little cakes though, that didn't deter our kids from eating them! He picked the coal car holding all the dark colored jelly beans, and graciously offered everyone else a turn to pick a car to eat too.

He has invited many people, strangers and family to his birthday. Up to now, everyone that he saw would hear, "I get a happy birsday cake...you come to my birsday? (That is not a typo, that is how he says birthday) and/or "I got new shoes" which he did...6 weeks ago! well, he got his happy birthday cake, and his happy birthday breakfast in bed. He was excited also to open several cards from family with green bills in them. It was such an exciting day for him. He will answer the question "How old are you?" with "10", although I'm not exactly sure why. Becoming three today didn't change anything. AFter the excitement dwindled a little, he resumed life as usual and went on about his business of finding mischief. He dumped sprinkles of many varieties into the grape juice, and then brought the grape juice into the living room to christen the "clean" side of my jute rug which just made it's return to the living room, clean side up! He then proceeded to eat a pile of mints from a pizza place (tucked away into a cupboard) and filled the bathtub with toilet paper. Not just the bathtub, but also a small metal lunch box that was then submerged in the tub! This is my child who can't stay away from the pantry. I regularly find food under his bed. If I am missing anything from the pantry, I look in his room first. A bag of chips, a container of marshmallows, a bag of prunes, the remaining chocolate chips, even crackers, a jar of peanut butter with the spoon in it...the list goes on! He's quiet and quick! That's my Benjamin! My Benjamin whose middle name comes from his great uncle, who weighed almost 10 pounds at birth and had a head full of black hair, who never wakes up mad, just happy and hungry and who is as animated as they come. He can sing his ABC's, count to eleven, identifies 3-4 colors correctly (always pink), asks if we are happy to him, and is thrilled to read the same book twice a day every day. He loves to watch "Super Why" and "Word World" and can sing all the songs. He rarely sits still, "cooks" anything he can, and asks, "huh?" to EVERYTHING at least once...mostly more than once, because we always repeat ourselves out of habit! He is my favorite Benjamin in the whole wide world! It's hard to believe that he's only been part of our family here for 3 years! I barely remember life without him! He is asleep...finally and it will only be a matter of hours before the sun is awake and it's time to wake up...AND EAT! Happy Birthday Benjamin Thomas.

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