I can not believe that this little girl of mine is THREE! She's having a hard time coming to grips with it as well. The day after her birthday she came to me and said "mom, I don't want to be three, I want to be two." I'm not sure if it was because she wanted to relive the glory of her birthday season or that she didn't want all the responsibilities that I explained came with the glories of being a three year old. I reiterated all the great things she gets to do now that she is three and she's been ok ever since. Man, is she a sweet three year old. I don't think I could ask for a better one. Always helpful, and usually happy and obedient. We really are lucky. She sets a good tone for Charlie....and thankfully he idolizes her.
So we sort of had more of a birthday Season for Hazel rather than just one day. It was really fun to drag it all out for her because she was so delighted by the idea of her birthday.....and had no expectations so everything was hugely surprising and happy to her. On her first birthday we started a tradition of camping for her birthday. This year we found a great camping spot in a state forest really close to our house. We went with two really good family friends of ours who both have boys Hazel's age. We had had a perfect trip.......fun day at the little pond, great cake and presents, scrumptous tin foil dinners and banana boats, kids went strait to sleep in the tent, great discussion over s'mores by the campfire.
As Jeff and I laid down at midnight in our tent filled with our sweetly sleeping children I was thinking to myself how happy I was that we had turned the corner with our family. That we had finally gotten to the place where we could have a little freedom and actually enjoy family events. I was feeling so overcome by love for our little family all packed in that tent. Then Charlie woke up. He hasn't really ever in his living memory slept that close to us and to him that meant it was time to play. We spent the next two hours doing our darndest to get him to go to sleep, but he was just loopy and awake and interested in nothing but pretending his "taggie" was a bulldozer and jumping and squealing in his crib. It would have been quite adorable if he hadn't been waking up the entire campground. I was a wreck. I kept trying to reason with him, offer him Cake (his favorite) in the morning for going to sleep....and the funny thing was it kept seeming (to my surprise) that it was working.
Here's how the conversation would go: ME: "Charlie, please just go to sleep! We're camping, everyone is sleeping, it's night time, I'll give you cake in the morning." Charlie: "YEAh, OK." Then he'd lay down for a few second and then hop back up hollering "jump, jump, jump" and throw something at Hazel. Meanwhile Jeff and I were fighting about what to do with him: the car? drive home? walk around? drive around? move to a far away campsite? We were feeling quite desperate and finally jeff won, convinced me that he's too young to be reasoned with and drove home. They slept for 4 hours and came back in the morning to get us.
Luckily, through the whole ordeal Hazel was an angel. Right after Jeff and Charlie left, Hazel, who had been woken repeatedly for the past two hours and had tried her very best to stay asleep as we had asked (bless her heart) piped up and said "Charlie is NOT a good camper, but I am!" And, bless her heart, she really was. She went right back to sleep and slept through the most monstrous amazing thunder and lighting full on rainstorm I have ever witnessed. It was QUITE a night!
Oh Hazel's actual birthday we woke her up with breakfast in bed (all we had in the house was bagels and she was absolutely DELIGHTED because I sprinkled sprinkles on her cream cheese...man this girl is easy to please). We went to her very first dance class together which she absolutely loved. Then that night we had a little party for her at a cool woodsy park near our house called Pine Banks. We brought a light dinner, cake and a very cheap pinata and Hazel had the time of her life. We decided to take advantage of the fact that this year we can still invite our good friends to a dinner and call it her birthday party (luckily Hazel loves our friends' kids!).