Friday, May 13, 2011

Our big little girl turns two!

Yesterday we celebrated Anna's second birthday! It is sometimes hard for me to believe that she is already two ... but most of the time, it feels about right :) Not because she is exhibiting a lot of particularly 'two-year-old' behaviour (though this is starting to make its grand appearance), but because she has achieved so much in the last year. She has learned how to explore and interact with her world in so many new ways, and is becoming very adept at communicating not just needs to us, but also her thoughts, opinions and preferences. She is learning the art of make-believe, and spends much of her playtime pretending. Which is endearing and often amusing! There is one corner of our living room here that she calls the beach, and will sit there digging in the sand or having beach picnics with her baby several times a day! She is developing a very nurturing character, and can often be found rocking her sippy cup to sleep or filling her little toy cradle with playdough grapes and singing to them. She talks about our 'tiny baby' a lot and loves to hug and kiss my belly; she seems to be looking forward to teaching tiny baby everything she knows when it's "all done hiding mama's tummy" :)

She is also developing a little social circle. She LOVES to play outside with our neighbours over here - especially the younger girl, Lexi. "Play Yexi?" can be heard many dozens of times each day in the Crouch house right now...! She of course also talks about seeing Clover again when we leave our "little yellow Papua-Ginee house", and draws lots of pictures of herself and Clover playing. I think it's so awesome that she's starting to expand her circle of important people to include more than just her parents :)

I did wonder how her birthday would go being so far away from our normal surroundings and friends ... but we had an awesome day! The night before, Mark and I filled the living room with balloons so she had a fun surprise when she woke up. And I was actually able to find some syrup at the store the last time I went into town, so I made her some birthday pancakes - always a hit :)

Add ImageAdd ImageShe wanted to put on her birthday skirt and "happy birfay hat" as soon as she woke up

I brought a couple boxes of cake mix as well as icing and sprinkles, so while Mark was at work Anna and I decorated her cake and cupcakes. I had sketched a couple of cake designs for her to choose from, and she went with butterflies :)

She was more into licking sprinkles off of the table than putting them onto the cupcakes, but she did a LITTLE bit of helping too!

The plan for her party was to have a cook-out at the bonfire pit behind our house, and then head in for cake and presents afterwards. Typically it rains here during the late afternoon and evening most days ... but not this day! We had some sprinkles for a few minutes, but nothing like the torrential downpour of the previous day. Thanks, God :)

The little bit of rain gave Erin the chance to model banana-leaf umbrellas for us!

Anna and her new BFF Lexi in their matching pink raincoats!

Keeping an eye on dinner

Dr Bill & Marsha McCoy, longtime family friends who we have the joy of living next to!

Smores for first dessert!

Blowing out her candle (with some help from Lexi & Dada) before digging into her cake for second dessert

The traditional Kudjip birthday hat

Opening presents! One of which was this adorable highland hat from Uncle Bill & Aunt Marsha. Now if only it would cool down enough to be able to wear it...! :)

I was totally overwhelmed by the outpouring of love our new friends showed us. It felt like half the compound turned up to celebrate the birthday of a little girl they barely knew, and it certainly blessed this Mama's heart! I'm so grateful for the closeness and fellowship we can share with our new neighbours, and that they are willing to invest in us and welcome us into their lives and homes even though we are only here for a month.


Luke Anthony said...

This really brightened my day :)