Oct 22, 2010

A Happy Birthday

 Monday the 18th, on her 4th birthday, Ainsley waiting for the bus on the porch. We put the crows and spider webs out the night before and she got bit between the eyes by a mosquito. It's October. Are there supposed to be mosquitos?!

That night we had dinner as a family. My sister came over that day and stayed.

Ainsley has been doing better eating bites of puree. She always wants some of what we are eating on her plate and will point and point until she has some of everything. Of course she doesn't eat any of it. But she will taste the sauces and sometimes lick stuff. Lately she's been doing more of that. She put cesar salad in her mouth and got a piece of parmesean cheese. She didn't gag or retch so that is progress. But she did very clearly show us that she wanted it out of her mouth.  

Later we opened presents.

 Her sister made her a bracelet, though Ainsley doesn't appreciate jewelry yet. It looks like she's admiring it. Actually she's trying to figure out how to get it off.

The kids love to give each other gifts.

Adrian and Ainsley have a special relationship. I love seeing them together.

She loves balloons so Evie picked this giant butterfly out for her.

It was cool to see she could open the cards by herself though the envelopes were torn to bits.

This one, from us, lit up. She was in awe.

 It was cute to see how excited she was to open the presents. She would point to the box and sign "open" over and over.

 Again, she was in awe and it was so neat to see. I think if she could talk she'd have said, "Really?! These are for me?!"

 We'd ordered the European version of Calico Critters, Sylvanian Families. They are the same but have other sets and things available that you can't get in the US.

 She kept saying open, open. But we'd run out of time to open them all. So we had to pick.

As I said in another post, her point is getting really good. But she couldn't decide. She'd point to one, then the other, back and forth. Who can decide? They are all so cute.  

We put 4 candles in the cake just like Ainsley's.

 Evie had stayed home sick and we found this cake together. Ainsley was Tinkerbell for Halloween last year. So I thought she might like this. The coolest part was that it came with jewelry on it.

I thought this would be perfect for a girl who doesn't eat cake and has this reaction to frosting.

But unfortunately this was her reaction to the jewelry. Though later in the week she decided she liked it. At least the necklace, maybe not the Tinkerbell bracelet. Overall though I'd say she had a perfect birthday.

It was a busy week. The following day was Steve and I's 14th wedding anniversary. We started dating in January 1992 which means this year we'll have been together 19 years. We had dinner at home with the kids. One disadvantage to have a trached kid.....no babysitters. Though since these days she can go without the trach for a bit I'm feeling like it could be safe (enough) to leave her with someone who doesn't know how to insert a tracheostomy (they can come out by accident). So look out. I might start hitting up family and friends soon. In fact, I left Ainsley with Sheryl for 15 minutes while I ran to get wrapping paper (yes I'm that neurotic). This was the first time I'd left Ainsley with anyone other than a nurse in 4 years.

 Later in the week we got all the boxes open. She loves the car. It pushes pretty easily it was cool to see her working on pushing. She can do it and that thing really goes.

I was especially excited about the school bus (and car) so we can expand her imaginative play to include activities that she does routinely like going to school on the school bus. Evie and Adrian still love Calico Critters so they were thrilled. It's a great thing they can all play together. Even I enjoy these adorable woodland creatures. They remind me of the Wind in the Willows characters.

This year Ainsley's birthday really didn't bring back painful memories of the time that she was born. It was a hard time. My oldest had just started Kindergarten. I had a busy 3 year old. And a baby in the NICU for 2 months who finally came home with an artificial airway, a feeding tube, a mini-hospital, nurses in my home, and  surgeries in the works. A lot has happened in 4 years. Our family is richer for having Ainsley in our lives. We've been through a lot together. We are better people.  There will still be struggles ahead but we are thankful for her and appreciate the small things in life and don't take our health for granted. I'm going to repost Ainsley's first year montage here for those who haven't seen it in awhile to remind everyone of how far she has come in these 4 years. 


  1. Happy belated birthday Ainsley! P.S. How in the world do you keep track of all of those little pieces? They are so cute and I keep tossing around the idea of starting them for the girls but all of those pieces make me crazy! Don't you love taking them ALL out of the box? I hope you have a great year as a four year old!

  2. Happy Birthday! Sylvanian Family play stuff is GREAT! I love them :)

  3. (posting from my husband's blogger account because I couldn't figure out how to otherwise)
    I love this birthday post! I laughed out loud at the icing photo and the reaction to the jewelry photo!! Oh, my goodness. I can so relate with my Chloe! Ainsley is so precious and so beautiful. You got some amazing photos of her birthday! Love them. I've been reading your blog for a long time and have never figured out how to comment on it for some reason . . . Bless you and your sweet family!


  4. Another parallel in our lives...ready for this one...drum roll please.
    Calico critters in this house with the calico playtable and house.

    What is this all about you figure?

    So many similarities, significant dates.
    Just plain crazy I tell you.

    I love the brotherly and sistery love .....swooning here. Sweetness I tell you.

    I so dig the finger point and I LOVE it!!
    That means so much to me and I still get weepy when Gage does that.

    Would you just look at her looking at that card...she is so stinkin' cute Susan.
    She is something that little one.