Tag Archives: birthday

Wifey’s Surprise Birthday Dinner

The past weekend was one full of eating!!

On Friday night, Wifey and I were invited to a department end of year dinner for her school.   Each year they prepare a very delicious 3 course meal and this year it was no exception.  We managed to roll home with no problems 😉

On Saturday night, I had organised a surprise Birthday dinner for Wifey!  All planned secretly through emails, the biggest problem was making sure Wifey didn’t accidentally read any of the emails for the last 2 weeks!  Having separate email accounts and home laptops does help though.. 

So on Saturday night, we got in the car and I started driving.  Wifey thought we were going for a romantic dinner for two at a fine dining restaurant 🙂

I took various turns, stopped to find carparks by various restaurants along the way, until we got to the Leederville car park.  Got out, then we nearly popped into Jus Burgers (which looked pretty full and happening) until I suggested we cross the road.  Towards Cinnamon Club, a restaurant she has been wanting to bring me to for ages!

The classic part was when we walked in.  She spied one of our friends at a table and asked me, “Look, xxx is here!?!”, at which point, she saw more of our friends on the same table, and then the realisation hit.

Thanks everyone for coming along!  I just figured out that ALL of us (all 8 couples) needed to organise babysitting for our combined 16 young children that night!  But it was good fun to get out and meet without the kids for a change…   I’ll have to organise this again another time!

 
Classic snags:
* Originally organised for the previous weekend, but we had a great offer to go up to Moore River for the weekend that we couldn’t refuse.  Which meant I had to tell everyone we had to delay the dinner for a week!
* Wifey wondering if it was OK not to invite my sister and brother-in-law to the family Birthday dinner the previous week.   Secretly, I knew it would be OK because I knew they’d be coming to the surprise dinner, but it was hard convincing Wifey otherwise 🙂
* Wondering if Wifey would be disappointed because I think she thought we were going to have a degustation dinner at Star Anise for the 2 of us!  Oops!  Next time…

By the way, the dinner there was great!  Lots of good quality food, good sized serves, reasonably priced, excellent attentive service (waiters/floor manager came by several times during the night asking if we have enough food, etc).  It’s also well located with bars/cafes nearby.  The price of wine there is high though, so definitely recommend BYO.

Advertisements

Amazing Race style Birthday Party

 

Photo of team members in a shop window
Photo of team members in a shop window

On Saturday, a group of twelve ~10 year olds descended on the local shopping centre in Perth to surreptitiously play a Birthday game for our Miss 10.

This year, we were wracking our brains trying to think of a party that was cheap, unique, fun for both boys and girls and could be held indoors in case the weather was bad.  Miss 10 had ideas of an indoor sports or circus party, but it didn’t fit all our criteria.   With more brainstorming and surfing the web, we stumbled across Amazing Race type birthday parties. 

We ended up buying a Birthday Party pack from Chase Games, a website that has made up various Amazing Race type games.  We ended up choosing the Mall Photo Chase.   This game is basically like a treasure hunt, except you have to take photos of team members doing certain things or photos of certain objects/situations.

The pack is great value – it comes with rules, envelopes, score sheets, and the goals for the teams too.  Wifey and I tailored the game a bit for the 10 year olds and our group.  We used 3 fixed rounds of 15 minutes, we changed some of the goals to make them a little “safer” and Australian, and we let the adult supervisors tick off goals as we went.

So we gathered at our meeting spot, announced the teams, went through all the rules and handed out the digital camera and then unleashed the 4 teams of 3 into suburban Saturday afternoon shopping mayhem.  We also had an adult for each team providing supervision, and also to be the adult in case they got into trouble.

And boy did they have fun!  The kids had a ball trying to find all the goals.  My team, even though we were lagging behind in the first 2 rounds, eventually won by getting all the round 3 goals which were worth much more.

Even the adults had heaps of fun, sharing stories of how the teams got certain photos (like of a team mate on TV!).   Overall we found that most shoppers and shopkeepers were friendly and co-operative.

All the kids had heaps of laughs afterwards going through all the photos.  Although, it did bring up points of contention and accusations of cheating!! 

I definitely recommend this as a party option – although you need to be prepared, and if the kids are young (pre-teen), it’s best to have some adult supervision for each group.

Tips for other people:

  • Check that the shopping centre allows photography (look at the rules).  We did have a backup plan – if security did want us to stop taking photos, we were going to continue as if it was a treasure hunt, but without taking the photos.
  • Make sure kids don’t run or disrupt other shoppers.  Last thing you want is to attract unnecessary attention.
  • Make sure kids always ask for permission before photographing strangers.
  • Be prepared to explain what you are doing to security!

Presenting Miss 10!

Miss 10!
Miss 10!
Our eldest princess has turned 10!  Miss 10!

I can’t believe how fast it’s gone.  Too fast, so fast that I struggle to remember details of your early years.  I try to replay your baby and toddler years in my head and only get highlights, or moments that center around photos or videos that we’ve taken.

I’m so proud of how mature you’ve become in 10 years.  Responsibility, self control, caring for your sister, saving Birthday and pocket money, not wanting everything, service and love of God and the love of your family, your honour, respect and fun with friends, keeping your room tidy (maybe too much!), knowing when to give things up to make more time for yourself.

I’m so amazed at what you’ve learnt in 10 years too.  From being a newborn that is totally helpless, you’ve learnt to feed yourself, clean yourself, dress yourself, walk, talk, dance, learn abstract concepts like maths (although you still struggle with long division and your times tables), operate Windows XP, Tivo and PS3, sing in different languages, play the Cello up to AMEB Grade 2-3 standard, center focus and recompose, learnt to play some easy piano by yourself.

You still amaze me with your familiarity with musical theatre and music songs.  Just the other day you were reprising songs (and some choreography) from nearly every major musical, Les Mis, Cats, Singing in the Rain, Fosse, Wicked, Hairspray, Flower Drum Song, Poppins, Sound of Music, My Fair Lady, Oliver, West Side Story, and the list goes on.  You can often re-sing a song you’ve heard only once.  And you’re just 10.

I love the huge hugs you give me and when you whisper, “I love you Daddy!” in my ear. I keep on saying to you that I wish you could turn 4 again, but 10 is really nice too 🙂  And you still occasionally sleep in our bed!  Even though, 5 years ago I was predicting (and lamenting) that you wouldn’t by the time you were 10.

Looking forward, the next 10 years will bring so much change and life events again.  By the time you’re 20, you will be thinking philosophically and religiously independently, you’ll have your driver’s license, you might have found a way around NetNanny on your netbook, finished High School and may be at Uni, you would’ve been into pubs and clubs by yourself, you will have many crushes and experience the emotions of relationships and love, rejection, self identity, peer group pressure, you may be tempted by drugs, alcohol and smoking, you may have a boyfriend or two that you will invite over to our house.  You will dislike and maybe hate me many times, be grounded many times, and you may even have moved out of home or tried to run away, or sneak out.

Ironically, at some stage, you probably will tell me to stop blogging about your growing up.

But lets stop thinking about that, and enjoy and cherish what we have now.

Hope you had a beautiful Birthday Miss 10!

Hawaiian Party

Last month, we hosted a Hawaiian themed party for our daughter.  As per usual, we did some research on the internet and read up some party books on Hawaiian and pool themes.   Here is what we ended up doing.

The waterfall Birthday cake!
The waterfall Birthday cake!
Fishies stuck on stuff
Fishies stuck on stuff
Signs around the house
Signs around the house
Punch served at the Tiki Bar
Punch served at the Tiki Bar
Grass skirts used to decorate the house
Grass skirts used to decorate the house
Food on a stick!
Food on a stick!
Chinese takeaway boxes for loot
Chinese takeaway boxes for loot
Lei making stuff
Lei making stuff
Jelly tropical style
Jelly tropical style

As for our girls, they had a ball!

The birthday girl!
The birthday girl!
Party time!
Party time!

Happy Birthday Django!

Dear Django,

Happy Birthday!  It was your second birthday today.

You started the day by waking up in T’s bed.   You were all sprawled out and totally floppy, wrapped in the warm quilt.   The kids woke up and you did your usual morning stretches, first back legs, then front.

Mum served you your favourite and usual breakfast of 2 spoons of yoghurt with half a cup of dry dog biscuits.  As usual, you swallowed it up full.  T made you a cute Birthday card and she presented it to you this morning.  She hugged you tight with all her love whilst she read the card to you.    You love cuddles from the kids and T loves giving them to you!

A Birthday Card for Django
A Birthday Card for Django

Soon it was time for us to go to school and work.  As a special treat this morning, I gave you half a Lix Baked Bone as a reward for your birthday and for going out the back door when I called you.  You have been so good at it lately!  You come when I call, you sit when I ask you to sit, and then you drop when I ask you to drop…  I might try to trick you tomorrow by not having the treat 🙂

I think you spent the rest of the day lazing on the back verandah, guarding our home, awaiting the return of those big creatures that give you food.

Django's Cupcake
Django's Cupcake

This evening we celebrated your birthday with a little blueberry cupcake with a sparkler on top.  A warm rendition of Happy Birthday was sung and then as a special special treat, we let you eat the cupcake on the kitchen bench!  You loved it!

I hope you had a great doggy birthday today!  No walk today, but we’ll get you out on the weekend 🙂  May you continue to bring the family much joy and love.

Family love
Family love