Today is Zoe’s birthday, and it has been quite fun! We woke early and finished tidying up the brand new porch. Yesterday, Zoe and I painted the porch swing and chairs and the guys came over to finalize a coat of paint on the porch itself. Now, it looks great!!! After that it was time to open a few presents; since she had a bunch from different family we decided to space it out over the day. She really liked the stuff from mommy and daddy: a tub of Lego Duplo blocks, a fairy costume for her babydoll, and a new lifevest, plus some craft supplies like new crayons, a dino coloring book, paint, and play doh. Good stuff. We also lucked out catching Grandma Effie and Don on Skype so it was fun to open their gifts with them. Her favorite was the giant dino floor puzzle, and she also loves her ‘United States Flag’ outfits and especially her new jelly shoes. We then cleaned up a bit and got lunch ready for her friends. We ended up doing a nice, fun, casual little party and had 4 other kiddo’s over. Her buddy, Kaleb, from next door was able to make it (they happened to be in town) which was really nice since they recently moved to Savannah. Zoe asked for peanut-butter jelly sandwiches, crazy noodles (mac-cheese), and olives for her birthday party lunch…I rounded it out with some other hand-held veggies, pretzels, and fish crackers. We then, OF COURSE, had a dino cake. Well it was actually a spinosaurus cupcake cake – she picked strawberry cake and green icing. It was fun to make and turned out pretty well, if I say so myself. The kids played most of the afternoon and noshed on food, we sang Happy Birthday, and then they each took a balloon home. No gifts since she had so many from family and I really wanted it to just be about getting the kids together for some fun. It was great, easy, and laid back…Zoe seemed to think it was perfect! Following the party we got back to opening some gifts. She loved her new game from Aunt Bethany, until she opened the other gift and found a cool bug collector, birthday hat, awesome dino raincoat, and (gasp) some play-wurst and sauerkraut for her kitchen. Immediately she felt obligated to ‘cook’ the ‘sausages’ for Bryan and I in her kitchen…they were tasty. Nana, Sara, Sophia, and Bella were then on Skype so we got to open more gifts! She got some cool sundresses, awesome new Tinkerbell sandals, and a Tink dress; I don’t think she thought the gifts would ever end. Uncle Tyler also sent a cool gift – a set of Little Pim DVD’s so we could start learning Spanish. The bonus is that Tyler was lead editor on the series! As if the fun wouldn’t end she opened her gifts from Grandma Pat and Howdy…another round of squeals as some super-cool play dino’s came out of the box. They are perfect for her farm! She also loved her new bubbles and a cool old dinosaur book that used to be Bryan’s Uncle John’s. We sat down to read it for a bit before she HAD to play with the dino’s. Finally, we were able to talk to Nan and Grandpa Joe on Skype and open their gifts with them. It was great – she got a cool dino placemat to color, a ‘pet’ bug, a family of little cats to live in her dollhouse, and an awesome playmobil Jeep and Moose hunter set! She was so excited about this that I needed to put it together right away. After such a crazy day it was nice to go outside and take a dip in the pool. Zoe discovered that if she was wet and I blew some of her new bubbles on her that they stuck to her belly. It’s much more fun to jump in the pool covered in bubbles! She also discovered that her pet bug is super fun to let run around on the new patio and then stick into her new bug catcher. We’re spending the rest of the day playing with the new gifts and swimming in the pool. I think Zoe had a great birthday; thank you everyone!!