Our little guy requested grilled cheese, milk shake, and french fries for his birthday dinner, and despite the pleas of his family for a different restaurant, he held firm to his original choice. When he unwrapped a little rubber animal from Jacob and Kyle at the end of the meal, his smile widened in delight. “Oh!” His voice is so sweet, so him. “An armadillo! That’s just what I always wanted! He so cute!”
One of the gifts that Lucas received for his birthday was a (stuffed animal) sea otter, brown and soft and nearly as big as he is. He immediately on meeting the creature adopted it into his bedtime menagerie, which also includes a dolphin, a harbor seal, a duck, a bright pink flamingo puppet, and P. Jaque de MOMA (a gift shop dog with fur of modern art orange-and-green). That first night of three, Lucas scrunched determinedly into his little bed, twisting this way and that, trying to arrange his friends. Finally he gave a wail. “I not CONFERBULL!”
Perhaps, Kyle suggested, the life-sized sea otter could sleep on the little plush reading chair by Lucas’s bed, and they could both be conferbull?
“NO,” said Lucas. “I want to sleep with ALL my friends.”
The next morning around 6:30, we heard bumps, grumbles, a rolling-about water bottle, and then the tell-tale shuffle of bare feet and blankets. Into our room, around our bed, and up to Daddy. “It’s daytime. I brought my friends.” With a heave, he tumbled them all into our bed. “I want to be in the middle,” he added. He climbed up and over Kyle, pulling his two blankets along with him, and lay down in between us. His cold toes were on my knee, the sea otter shoved unceremoniously into my face. Lucas tossed and turned.
“Ohhhh,” he wailed into my ear, a piteous cry. He clutched his cadre of creatures and tried to squeeze his head onto my pillow. “I not CONFERBULL!”
When we asked Lucas what he wanted for his birthday, he was definite. Dinner out at his choice of restaurant, candy canes (?!), and “February Cake” (??!!). February cake, he told us, has no icing. It has no fruit, no chocolate and no whipped cream. It is plain cake, and it is not brown.
So here’s our take on February Cake: we made our favorite 1-2-3-4 cake and despite Lucas’s request, a simple cream cheese icing (minus the apple butter). In honor of the cherry blossoms blooming all around town (yikes) I made a chocolate “branch” and the boys decorated it with a few pale pink (Valentine’s Day) M&M “blossoms”.
Lucas chose to eat one of the plain pieces we had set aside in reserve, even as we sliced into pretty iced layers for the rest of us. As he wiped crumbs from his face, he sighed happily. “This the best birthday ever.”
And I hope the coming year is even better, Lu-Bear. We love you, and we like you. XO