Turning 3 in style 


I gave Clarissa some ideas for how to celebrate her birthday.  She said she wanted ALL of her friends,  pizza,  cupcakes, and the color playground. Done.

Most of Clarissa’s friends in our building go to Korean preschool.  Their summer break was the week before Clarissa’s birthday so we decided to celebrate early.

Clarissa helped me make cupcakes the day before her party.  I put them inside my cupcake carrier but didn’t think to put them in the refrigerator.  Our apartment is so warm and humid that the frosting melted overnight.  I don’t have a great track record with her birthday cupcakes

The temperature was supposed to hit 103 during the party,  so I tried unsuccessfully  to find water balloons. But our friends had a small pool so we decided to do that on the playground.

The kids had a great time playing in the water and eating their pizza and cupcakes.

My favorite part of the party was when it was time for Clarissa to open her presents.  Each of her friends was so excited to give her a gift that Clarissa didn’t actually open any of them herself. Each of her friends opened the presents that he or she  brought and shoved them in her face saying “look what I got you!”  I wish I had pictures from that moment.

As her actual birthday approached,  I was also excited about another activity I have been planning.  Compassion International has a few programs that I really like that help families.  They have a child survival program that helps moms and babies receive nutritional assistance, prenatal care, childhood immunizations, and mentoring from a local church. Once a child is about three years old he is eligible to become a sponsored child.

I have been waiting until Clarissa turns three so she could pick a child about her age to sponsor. Then they can kind of grow up together through letters and prayers. I thought for sure that Clarissa would want a little girl. But I was wrong. She was ADAMANT that she wanted a boy (though I’m not entirely convinced she understood that this little boy would not be coming over to play with her). She ended up choosing a little boy from Colombia who was born on the same day as her. We pray for this little boy often before bed. I actually pray for his mother almost every day as well. Whenever Clarissa’s behavior is challenging, I pray for his mother too because I figure that she is going through the exact same thing with her little boy.

Clarissa’s actual birthday was on a Saturday so Tim was already off. I spent the morning running errands on post and then when I came home we had some cupcakes. I was planning to wait until we came home from our family celebration. But, I showed them to Tim while she was having a tea party in the bathtub and insisted “but mom it’s my birthday now!”

We then went to the bowling alley for pizza and a game of bowling. We have actually been bowling three times in the past two months because she enjoys it so much. We only play one game each time due to her attention span though. It is pretty fun. We always have bumpers up and she has a ramp for her ball to roll off of towards the pins.

After bowling we headed to the PX. Clarissa read the most books in her age group during the summer reading program on post. Her prize was a $25 gift card to the PX. She chose a Frozen jewelry making kit and some Elsa panties.

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