Turning nine is a big deal, or so I think. It’s the last single digit birthday a person can have and, somehow, seems to draw a line between childhood and tweendom in my mind. Not that I consider my daughter to be a tween yet. I’ll probably only admit she’s a teen when she turns eighteen.
So, my first baby is now nine years old. I keep repeating it to myself, hoping it will become more real. I desperately want to be that mum who embraces each new stage of her children’s growth with open arms, but my eyes still well up every time one of them outgrows a pair of trousers. Okay, on to the birthday celebrations…
As I mentioned last week, this year Maia decided against a party (the last party we threw her was when I was still pregnant with Robin!) and, instead, expressed a few wishes which she thought would make for a great day. The first wish was finally getting her hands on an IKEA Duktig mini-kitchen. We had already ordered it a few weeks earlier so it would arrive on the island in time for the big day, so the first hour of her birthday was spent building it. Robin thinks ‘their’ kitchen is the best thing since sliced bread and her morning playtime has become infinitely more exciting. Maia has yet to find enough time to cook us a full meal, but hopefully that will happen before she outgrows the kitchen by another foot.
Kitchen-building was followed by a very noisy and messy breakfast at our favourite cafe’. Robin was hell-bent on washing every surface in sight with her babyccino and shrieked like a pterodactyl the whole time. So we cut it short and proceeded to the next wish on the list. Actually, this wish wasn’t on her list but we (I) thought it would make her happy. And it did. I took her, her cousin and her two closest friends to have a manicure. My husband thought I was crazy for ‘setting a precedent’, as he put it. I am known as the nail polish nazi at home, rarely allowing her to paint her nails, even though it’s usually for dress-up. And here I was, treating her to an hour-long session at a beautician. The idea was a success with all the girls. They loved being pampered and, by the end of the hour, were breaking into song with the nail technician and the salon owner.
After lunch, another wish was ticked off the list. This year’s cake was the first one not related to Charlie and Lola in four years! Instead, she asked for a Frozen-themed cake and, since we prefer less obvious choices, we decided Olaf would be more desirable than a princess. As usual, my sister delivered a spectacular cake. I’ll leave its picture below do the talking.
Next came another wish from her list, which turned out to be the highlight of the day. The memory of last year’s birthday surprise up in the Alps was still strong. She wanted to ride a horse again, but this time on its back. She loved it so much that we ended up going again two days later and plan to make it a regular activity for the whole family.
And that, my friends, is what a nine-year-old’s ideal day looks like (not forgetting the factory tour she was treated to the previous day). I must admit we all enjoyed it a lot more than we would have enjoyed a party. That doesn’t mean I’m not already planning one to celebrate Robin’s third in less than three months…