Steve and I are blessed to have parents and siblings who adore spoiling our children. Kayleigh has two birthday parties coming up where we know she will get spoiled with fun presents. In addition to that, her life is filled with random gifts and spoiling opportunities. So while we're able to think of "ideas" for people that are fun gifts, we don't feel the need to add more toys/clothes on to the day. Therefore, we have decided that, at least for the immediate future, Mommy and Daddy are going to give the kids a fun "date" on their actual birthday, alone ... no other siblings along. When they are older, they'll be able to choose where we go (and we can get more extravagant as age requires), but last night we designed Kayleigh's night out for her. Bri came over to watch Benjamin and after Daddy's game was over, we went out. We started at "Taco Bob's." Kayleigh adores two foods: Tacos and hot dogs. So, we talked all day about going to dinner at Taco Bob's. She was fairly skipping in to the restaurant. The man behind the counter thought it was cute that a little blonde 2 year old would want to go to a local taco restaurant on her birthday, so he gave her a Taco Bob's tatoo and her taco for free. She actually ate very little of the taco (too excited to be out with Mom and Dad), but she surely enjoyed her experience.
After dinner, we raced over to Bounceland (a place with lots of inflatable toys for kids to climb on and play and be wild on). They had an area for 0-5 year olds, but of course our child would have NONE of that. Instead, she found the biggest slides in the entire place and wanted to go down them over and over and over. It would have been endlessly amusing for Mom and Dad except for one tiny detail. Despite Kayleigh's fearLESSness in riding the MASSIVE slides, she was quite afraid of walking on the air filled surfaces. Therefore, to get to the top of the slides, she needed to be carried. She wouldn't even crawl - it was a death grip to Mommy and Daddy's neck until she reached the top ... then she'd position herself at the top of the slide and say, "I do it myself! I do it myself!" And plummet, sometimes very uncontrollably, down the steep slide to the bottom. As soon as she regained her balance, she'd hold her arms to the exhausted parent at the bottom and it would be that person's turn (as the other made the drop down the slide themselves).
Kayleigh tried a few other toys at Bounceland, but mostly, she spent her time going up and down and up and down the "really big big big big SLIIIIIDDDDEEE." (The longer it takes you to say "slide" the bigger the slide really is!!) As half of the party responsible for our Bounceland experience, I can tell you that I learned one important lesson: 1 hour is PLENTY for a 2 year old ... or maybe it's more accurate to say 1 hour is more than enough for the 2 parents carrying the child up and down the slides. I believe I'm sore today not from the Pilates workouts but from the Bounceland climbing!!!
After ice cream, we came back and she opened her present from Great Grandpa Van Dyk. She watched a Mickey and sat on Mommy's lap (she NEVER EVER sits through a whole Mickey, staring intently) and zoned out. She went to bed quite late, but had a fantastic day.
I have a few pictures from her time with Mommy and Benjamin throughout her birthday day - but I'll blog those in a different post. Here are a few short videos of her Bounceland experience (sorry, no pics from Taco Bob's ... it was all hands on deck as we ate and kept her occupied).