Ok. Apples. I was not expecting this. I continued to ask him every couple of days, waiting for him to change his mind. His answer only got more enthusiastic and clear, "Ah-Ahps birthday party!" or "Jude Ah-Ahps party!" As his birthday got nearer, any time anyone would mention it, he would always clarify for them that he was having an apple party. When he told Gabriela, I smiled, and said my usual line: "Yeah, I don't understand it, but it looks like we're having an apple party." Gabriela was the first person who thought it made perfect sense. She explained that for him, apples are a sign of celebration- we have been apple picking and the kids bring apples to Gabriela's to chop and make apple cobbler one day a week.
Whatever the reason for Jude's choice, he loved his apple party and clearly felt very special all day. Whenever he saw any of the decorations, Jude would proudly proclaim, "My birthday! Two!" His "party" was very low key. We invited the Roberts family and basically had a barbeque. The adults ate while the three kids played in the back yard. We had decorated the dining area in an apple theme- hung red balloons with construction paper leaves from the fan and placed apples around the apple cake I made. However, because the cake had cream cheese icing and had to be in the fridge, the table really just appeared to have a centerpiece of apples for a while. At one point, we checked on the boys inside to find that they were happily eating from all 10 of the apples on the table. When we did bring the cake out, Atticus coached Jude and the other boys about when to blow out the candles (and who should be blowing out the candles). I wish I had remembered the video camera. Jude's concentration was priceless. And it paid off. As soon as the song was finished he stood up in his chair, leaned over, and blew out both candles in one big puff!
After eating the apple cake, Jude opened his presents. He received pool toys and a kite from Christian. (The kite was another strange request from Jude. When I asked him what presents he wanted for his birthday, he first responded with apples. When pressed further, he came up with, "Kite! Fly!") Finnan gave Jude a real shovel to match his. (It has become clear to me that every male child needs his own quality shovel and large dump truck.) We gave Jude a nerf football and a tunnel (tube-like thing that kids crawl through). Atticus had run to IKEA at the last minute to pick up the tunnel (Jude is obsessed with tunnels) as the idea only occurred to me the day of the party. I am amazed at how much the boys love that tunnel. We'll just see how long it is before we have a tunnel related injury. In addition to already turning it into a roller, a submarine, and a monster, they have also attempted to prop it against Finnan's foot board to make a slide and set it up between a chair and the sofa to make a bridge. Fortunately, Atticus and I were on hand in time to scratch both these ideas, this time.
I am not much of a party planner, but judging by Jude's reactions, it was perfect. And that is all I wanted for his birthday.
|Jude LOVED the apple balloons. He thought it was a "fun game" to bat them around.|
|Happy Birthday to You! (Notice all of the partially eaten apples to the side.)|
|His wish should come true!|