Birthdays around here are a pretty big deal and they like to start early and linger on. There's no one day and it's over for us, we milk it for all it's worth. :)
So, the day before Axel's real birthday, we made plans with his friends at the library park. (All our parks have various names like the Light House Park....the Farm Park...the Butterfly Park...etc. It helps keep things straight and everyone on the same page.) Anyways, I decided ice-cream cone cupcakes were in order but this year, with a little different topping. Meringue Puffs...I love them but they are not the greatest for little kids. They are super sweet so by the time the kids got down to the actual cupcake, they were about over it. However, that wasn't so bad for those of us moms willing to finish the uneaten leftovers. :) They are super cute and I think I would make them smaller next time and have them on the side as little treats. The day turned out beautiful. It was sunny and warm; Axel was besides himself. He loves the library park especially when his friends are there. His BFF got to spend the morning at his house. While Axel and Riley played, Mommy decorated the cupcakes and baked some tasty muffins to get ready for the big outing. Riley even got to ride with us to the park. This was going to be a good day.
We had lots of tasty snacks and tons of playground equipment to go around.
Playground equipment and WATER FOUNTAINS. It never fails that the non-toy items become the biggest hit. Once told to leave the water alone...
McCabe listened. The other two, in their usual fashion, kept testing the water to see if Mom was serious or not. Check out Axel, he just pretends he doesn't hear a thing! These two really are trouble but very, very cute trouble!
This was a happy birthday boy! I'm not sure what he is doing here but it's all happiness.
Then it was time for cupcakes!
The crew jumped in to help with present opening. Don't worry, everyone got to open and everyone got to take home something special.
There was still more playing and hanging out with his BFF.
We have some great neighborhood kids so we had planned to take extra special cupcakes to the bus stop after school. The only problem? Axel was so tired he slept through the arrival of the bus. He was all tired out from his party. So, these cute little ones had to wait until bike/scooter time which is usually 4:30pm around here.
We delivered cupcakes around the neighborhood to all our friends and played along the way. Axel was the hit of the neighborhood.
Axel LOVES sunrises and sunsets. He knows just how special they are and always points them out. This one he called his "Special Birthday Sunset" and I think he's right.
It was beautiful and made him feel so very special.
After dinner we had one more cupcake to deliver. It was dark so he got his flashlight and we walked a few houses down to visit Braden. He loved this little dark adventure. It got even better when his friend surprised him with a birthday gift...a Lego Space Shuttle! Back at home, it didn't take two seconds to get Daddy excited to help put it together. Daddy is no sucker, he put Axel right to work and made him pull his weight. :)
Lucas dug out his Legos from his uncles so everyone had a Lego night.
We had to bust out the birthday decorations after the boys went to bed.
The next morning, Axel cried and cried when he saw his decorations. He sat on the floor and sobbed, "I just want to get out." Poor boy thought he was trapped in the hallway forever. I quickly explained that it was his REAL birthday and these were his very special birthday decorations! "Oh," he said as he busted through the wall.
He found three big balloons and a big HAPPY BIRTHDAY AXEL poster so he was able to give us this cute little, sleepy, teary-eyed smile.
It took about two minutes to realize that this was his day! He had Mickey Mouse pancakes with Lucas for breakfast and a special birthday lunch with Daddy & Mommy at the Boat House.
Mommy & Daddy celebrated with Grouper Tacos and Axel stuck to his traditional pizza. We were all happy to celebrate!
After school and Taekwondo, we headed to Fat Daddy's Arcade. We found out about Fat Daddy's when we first moved to Florida and were invited to our neighbors birthday party. From that day forward, Axel made up his mind that this is where birthday are celebrated!
We were pleasantly surprised by the quality of pizza and the lack of people but it wasn't about the food or the other people. It was about Axel and his birthday shirt hittin' the games. The back of his shirt says, "Today is My Birthday!"
Daddy helped out a little. :)
Lucas hit the 1000 tickets jackpot on his second game! He was ecstatic and could hardly contain himself. I sat by the machine for 15 minutes catching 1000 little yellow tickets!
It didn't take long before Axel his a jackpot of his own to win 250 tickets. We need to take these guys to Vegas!
Air hockey was a favorite. Axel giggled and giggled!
At the end of the evening, the pizza cook handed us a huge bag of ticket on top of the 1500 we won. He likes to play the games and gives way the tickets to random kiddos. Well, we ended up with 3000 tickets to cash in for prizes! Lucas picked out an Angry Birds stuffed animal and a Magic 8 Ball. Axel ended up with a gun launched glider and a pull string Zoom Helicopter. Everyone was all smiles!
We headed back home to eat cake and open gifts.
Check out those candles! I couldn't find the birthday candles so we went with some nice, sturdy, train appropriate, last minute, wonderful find candles. Phew! :)
Here he is...MR. AXEL ADVENTURE who is now 3 YEARS OLD! Really?! I still can't believe it.
Mmmm...cake! It turned out delicious! I had to make a dense cake so it would stand up. To do so, I used a box of Duncan Hines Devil Food Cake, 1 lg box Chocolate Instant Pudding, 4 eggs, 1/2 C. oil, 1 container of Greek yogurt, 1/2 C. chocolate chips and a little bit of water to make it so I could actually stir it. IT WAS THICK! I made a little cupcake to make sure it would work and it did! It took one hour to cook at 350 degrees but that sucker cooked...came out of the pan...stood up and tasted good! Damn, I'm good! :)
Lucas loves birthdays too (of course) and Axel's special day marks the half way point to Lucas next one.
We quickly moved on to the presents. Axel loves Legos and Cars and don't forget trains.
This cool light ball with 3D glasses turned out to be a hit too.
Lucas even ended up with a few Big brother birthday gifts. He was a great sport and such a great big brother to Lucas. Both boys have really started to grow close and enjoy spending time playing togther. It's so fun to see them grow up together.
What a perfect birthday!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY AXEL!!! Love, Mommy, Daddy & Lucas