You know someone is maturing, when they no longer wake you up at 5:30 to open presents. For the first time, Spunky Monkey, got up and waited until we got out of bed before even mentioning his birthday.
After a frenzy of present opening and a road test of his new bike, Nanny arrived and joined us for a birthday breakfast: pancakes dotted with chocolate chips, the birthday boy's request.
Yes, I did give Spunky Monkey two antique print trays for his birthday. Maybe not everyone's idea of the perfect present for an eight year old. But he was wrapped!
A cake was taken to school to share with his class.
And what did he want to do the afternoon of his birthday? Re-arrange his room of course. He had been wanting to do this for a while and the new print trays were a great excuse. He has even colour coordinated his lego. I like this.
Dinner was the usual birthday dinner: tacos, followed by chocolate cake.
On the only sunny day before or since, we had Spunky Monkey's party: a simple barbecue in the park. School friends and cousins ran, climbed, imagined, played and battled over the contents of the pinata.
• the cake that I cooked for Spunky Monkey's birthday was this chocolate cake. It was decorated with raspberries and whipped cream. Inspired completely by Alicia's cakes.
• the lego cake was just a plain vanilla cake made like this one.
• the pinata was a computer paper box made the night before by Mr Moo, very similar to this one.
• The afternoon of the party, as the lollies gathered from the pinata were being gobbled up, I offered my kids a deal. I paid them 50 cents for each lolly they gave to me. As I tallied up the value on a piece of paper they quickly realised that this was a good idea and ended up giving me all of their lollies. I was thrilled that they would be eating no more sugar and have put the lollies aside to be given out at Halloween this year.It was a win win, I'd say.