Our sweet, funny, smart, friendly, old-soul, musical, sarcastic, compassionate, and general mensch-ette of a first born daughter is five! That’s half a decade! That’s all the fingers on a hand. That’s, like, all of undergrad for an ASU alum. (sorry. Had to. Love all my Sun Devil friends.).
It’s crazy to think Madelyn Shana has been around for five years. On one hand, it seems like it’s been a blink and she went from birth to kindergartner. On the other hand, it seems like she’s always been here; that life before her was so distant and unimportant. I can barely remember being me before I was a mom. A few days ago, Madelyn asked me about the happiest day of my life. I didn’t hesitate to tell her that it was the day she was born.
I always get emotional on my kids’ birthdays, and I’m a stickler for keeping our traditions (like going out to dinner on the birthday even like we did in 2013 and in 2014 and other years that didn’t get documented — for shame!) This fifth birthday was no different because all remnants of baby and toddler are now completely absent, and Madelyn is all… kid!
Since before she was born, it was determined that Madelyn would have to be a fan of the Dodgers in order to become a welcome family member. Thankfully, she obliged — whew! — and we could keep her as our own. She’s grown up seeing many games at Dodger Stadium thanks to the generosity of her Auntie Pattie and Uncle Barry and will never be able to sit anywhere else in the ballpark, since when you start in the Dugout Club, you’re ruined in the best way possible! Madelyn also loves to watch games on TV, and surrenders to the poetry of Mr. Vin Scully’s on-air talents. So it’s not exactly a shocker that she asked for a Dodgers-themed birthday to ring in the big 5.
Just a few days before her big party, the famous Auntie Pattie invited the family to come together to celebrate Madelyn’s birthday in the suite on the day she turned five!
The best part about suite nights at Dodger Stadium is watching all the cousins play together. Madelyn absolutely adores all her cousins because they are a fun and wild bunch and their mutual amounts of energy always makes us boring grown-ups double over in laughter.
It’s possible we didn’t do a lot of game watching since there was a lot of birthday celebrating going on, but the food and family ruled the night and that’s what mattered most. Also, the Dodgers did win, so that was a plus.
Still, we are oh-so grateful to these special people right here! Madelyn appreciates her time at Dodger Stadium and it’s all thanks to them!
Normally, the evening of August 9th is dinner out at Cheesecake Factory with both sets of grandparents, but we were more than happy to break the birthday tradition and spend the evening at the Dodger game. Madelyn loves being with her Grandma & Grandpa and Mimi & Poppa on her birthday.
Madelyn conked out in the car before we even reached the freeway. The fifth birthday was a homerun.
But, there were more innings to go. Her big party (you know, the one that I always say I’m not going to make) was a few days later and I spent the whole week on finishing touches because suicide by arts and crafts is the best way to go.
Sticking with the Dodgers theme of the week, we had lots of fun making this party Dodgerfied. From the walk up to the front door to the food names to the activities, it was Dodgertastic and Madelyn loved it!
It was the first party in a few years that I didn’t hire a company or activity for entertainment, but now that the kids are older and not such social misfits, I knew they’d still have fun hanging with friends, playing tee ball, and doing a craft. I set up a Make Your Own Pennant station where the kids could decorate a paper pennant with lots of doodads and markers. They turned out great and I think the kids really enjoyed it.
As always, birthday parties are a great time to be with our friends and family and we are always so glad they are there to celebrate good times (come on!).
When it was time to sing “Happy Birthday,” I brought out the cupcakes, candled up a special birthday cupcake for Madelyn, and we all enjoyed a big group number to wish her the best. When it was time to make a wish, the always-thoughtful Madelyn clammed up for a moment, unable to come up with a wish on the spot. She stresses under pressure and we were nanoseconds from tears due to those BIG feelings that come with turning five, but I was able to avoid drama by promising her that wishes count later on and she can sleep on it. Whew! So she blew out her candles — probably wishing for more time to make a wish — and we all celebrated with group sugar consumption. Birthdays are the best like that.
The party dwindled down, but Madelyn’s appetite for cupcakes did not. She had about four more before the night was over. I justified this parenting decision because I ordered 72 cupcakes. I couldn’t let the 40 uneaten cupcakes go to waste, so I decided they were health food for my growing daughter. Muffins, really. With sweet cream on top. Basically, breakfast, right?
And because I like to fatten everyone up (#jewishmother), I sent everyone home with iced baseball heart cookies that I made (#newhobby). You’re welcome, parents, for the sugar at 7 p.m.
The party was a World Series winner, and my lil slugger was more than happy. We did our job. Madelyn had a very, very happy fifth birthday.
Bryan created an amazing video for Madelyn’s 5th birthday that documents her life as a Dodger fan! He’s too talented. He whipped this up in a week, and I am in awe. This looped at the party and I can’t stop watching it still!