Monday, November 7, 2011

Happy 6th Birthday!

Our room's balcony overlooked the waterpark
Madeline's birthday was November 4th.  I can't believe that our little girl is 6!!  Where is the time going??  I am a big believer in making a big deal about one's it my birthday (although more difficult to acknowledge as I get older), David's birthday, my kids' birthdays or a friend's birthday, I believe that a birthday is one's special day.  I initially planned to throw Madeline a birthday party with her playmates, however, since relocating moved us far away from her friends and her birthday was too close to our arrival in Minnesota for her to make new friends to invite to a party here, we had to make other celebration plans. David and I decided to celebrate Madeline's birthday in, as Madeline would call it, a "sparkly hotel" - that is, a hotel with an indoor water park.  Since Madeline is a little fish when it comes to the water, the water park was a good day of fun.

Madeline and Jonathan ready for water fun
The Waterpark of America is only about a 15 minute drive from us but we decided to do an overnight for maximum water fun.  It was a pretty decent park and they are constantly offering discounted day passes or 1/2 day passes so I will certainly go back there again.  A discounted pass would make for a perfect mother/daughter or father/daughter outing for that one-on-one time with Madeline.

Madeline's birthday "candle" and cherries jubilee
After a few hours of water play (David & I took rotations between Madeline & Jonathan), we enjoyed an oh so (not) gourmet snack bar dinner of hot dogs, cheeseburgers and fries.  Not exactly my idea of a good birthday dinner, but it was a fun meal for a 6 year old.  After dinner, back to the water for more fun.  Later, we headed back to our room and there we ordered a birthday dessert.  I always have intentions of creating some beautifully themed birthday cake that is decorated with much love yet, in reality, Madeline is not a big cake person.  Also, with only 3 of us eating desserts, an entire cake would be much, much more than we would (and should) eat.  Besides, with the logistics of bringing a cake to the hotel it made more sense for us to order up room service dessert.  Unfortunately, I can' get the "Mama gold star" because I didn't pack candles.  What did we use when singing Happy Birthday??? We made believe my index finger was a candle.  Oh well....Madeline and I only cared about digging into our cherries jubilee while David eyed up his sinful chocolate dessert.  The lack of a candle was not on Madeline's radar at all as she was more concerned about tearing into her birthday gifts

Can't wait to open gifts!
Madeline was sufficiently spoiled with gifts from me, David & Jonathan as well as gifts that were mailed to her from family.  Madeline was happy with all that she got and she was super excited about her "Fur Real Friend" that she got from David and me.  The "Fur Real Friend" is basically a barking toy dog that you can take on a walk via a remote control.  We let Madeline take her dog, that she named Fluffy, for a *quick* stroll in the hallway of the hotel before she went to bed. 

As I followed behind Madeline in the hotel hallway, I got a quick flash back to Russia.  In the week after our "Gotcha Day", we had a lot of time to spend in the hotel with a 20 month old.  A very tiny hotel room didn't do much in occupying a toddler.  The international adoption families were mostly on the same floor in the hotel (we jokingly referred to it as "the American wing"). Although we went on numerous walks in Astrakhan, Russia, we all spent many hours letting our kids toddle around the hallways as we followed behind them.  And as I followed Madeline as she walked Fluffy in the hotel hallway I flashed back in my mind to the Azimut Hotel in Astrakhan Russia and wondered where has the time gone?
Awesome designer doggie with a you-decorate dog carrier and dog cape - from Uncle Marty & Aunt Vicky

Super cool Polly Pocket RV from "Texas Grandma"

Stylish smile shirt from Aunt Margaret

Madeline and her FurReal Friend - "Fluffy"

Walking the dog as Mama wonders where the time has gone.

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