Saturday, February 11, 2012

Here Goes My Big 5-Year Old!

Yes, it is official. My sweet little M is now a 5-year old (but if you ask him, he will tell you he's still just 4.5 since he decided not to grow up). Just like all the previous years, we didn't really have a birthday party. Unlike the previous 4 years when it was mostly because of various colds and such, this year's decision was entirely M's own.

It all started about 3 weeks ago when he made his birthday wish list. Top item on it was... a garbage truck. Ok, so then about 2 weeks ago he asked me if we could stop by a toy store so he could just look at the toys and point out which ones he wanted for his birthday. Ok, fine. Turns out, the store did have this awesome (and surprisingly inexpensive) garbage truck with lights, sounds, moving parts and a detachable trash bin. Wow! So he begged and begged and I told him that no, it's not his birthday yet and he'd have to wait 2 more weeks.

Except that same evening M came to me looking all sneaky and excited and said that he came up with an idea how to get this truck sooner - to celebrate his birthday the next day. I honestly didn't mind; after all, it's his birthday and he should have a say in it, don't you think? Except I warned him that since it was so unexpected and it was going to be a regular work day, none of his friends would be able to make it. Also, while I was planning on buying a simple dessert, there wouldn't be any candles on it. I also explained that he would get another dessert on his proper birthday, this time, with candles, but it wasn't going to be like a party. M was simply thrilled with the arrangement. He said all he wanted was the toy and then "my friends can just come over and we'll play".

So that's exactly what happened. But we did have a really good birthday day last Thursday. A couple of his friends stopped by for a playdate in mid-afternoon and the boys had lots of fun, including with the toy garbage truck. Later that evening, M's best friend stopped by and even brought a gift and they played some more and had cake and M got to blow out the candles. And today M and his best friend went to the inflatables place and jumped and ran around for a couple of hours.

All in all, I liked the format. It was a lot less stressful and, frankly, a lot less expensive. M was very happy not just with the gifts, but also with so many playdates with his friends. We might adopt this option for the next year if M is so inclined.

Oh, and the gifts M got for his birthday included - a garbage truck and Dr. Porkchop's flying machine (from Toy Story 3); a spy probe and a Federation Troop Transport (from Star Wars); an Encyclopedia of Galactic Battles (Star Wars again), an awesome Lego Tie Figher (c'mon, you know it's from Star Wars) and a set of two pit droids (yep, even more Star Wars).

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