Yesterday was the first time Sofia celebrated a birthday with us. Overall, it was a great day. Here's how it went down:
We woke her up with breakfast in bed, singing Happy Birthday.
The boys gave her their gifts and she got a card from us. I think she was a little disappointed we didn't give her anything:-)
I told her to get up and follow the ribbon that was outside her door - it led her around the house a bit and then outside and all around the backyard until it finally went to the balcony where her new bike was waiting . . . pink, with a bell and a basket, just like she wanted!
She spent the morning riding her bike while I was getting things ready for the parties (a garden/butterfly theme). There were actually some behaviour issues to deal with too - the anticipation of the day was probably a little much for her!
From 2-4pm we had a party with her classmates - 3 were on holiday and unable to come. We had set up the screen house outside so they could do some crafts and play with Playdough there. There was also sidewalk chalk, bubbles, the playhouse and the trampoline. Sofia "Spun the Bottle" to decide in which order to open the gifts.. They had cake, chips and drinks inside. They played "Musical Butterflies" outside.
After the children left, Sofia looked at me and said, "That was a good Happy Birthday, Mom."
At 6 we had the family party, which included Stefan's immediate family, his aunts some of his cousins and their families as well as some family friends.
Sofia was absolutely thrilled with the day. At bedtime, she was so thankful for everything - not just the gifts, but that she got to have a special day and people came over to celebrate her. She has told us that in Russia they celebrated her birthday in the group - her great grandmother would come and bring her a gift and the social worker would give her chocolate - but it was nothing like this.
It won't be so elaborate every year . . . but this was her first birthday with us. And, besides, it was rather fun to plan a summer party . . . all 3 boys have their birthdays in the middle of winter so this was a nice change:-)
The following is supposed to be a link to the rest of the photos on my Picasa site . . . I don't know if it will actually work . . .
The outskirts of St. Pete
Saint Petersburg: Sankt-Peterburg, Russian pronunciation: is a city and a federal subject of Russia located on the Neva River at the head of the Gulf of Finland on the Baltic Sea. The city's other names were Petrograd (1914–1924) and Leningrad (1924–1991). Founded by Tsar Peter I of Russia on 27 May, 1703, it was the capital of the Russian Empire for more than two hundred years (1713–1728, 1732–1918). Saint Petersburg is home to more than two hundred museums, many of them hosted in historic buildings. The largest of the museums is the Hermitage Museum, featuring interiors of the former imperial residence and a vast collection of art. Celebrating the 300th anniversary of its foundation, Saint Petersburg was selected as the main motif in a recent Finnish commemorative coin, the €10 Mannerheim and Saint Petersburg commemorative coin, minted in 2003. The reverse of the coin features a view of Saint Petersburg, with the Peter and Paul Fortress and its three turrets. In the coin the words "St. Petersburg 1703-2003" can be seen.