what you look like at 4

It seems like just yesterday.

Yet when I stop to look at you carefully, I can see the changes in your face and have to sigh as I realize that 366 days ~ it  was a Leap Year after all ~ have indeed passed and you are no longer three.

"i forwe!"
You snubbed my first attempts at getting a birthday picture of you.

True to your personality right now, you were too engrossed in what you were doing to give me the time of day ~ even when I tried to offer cantaloupe and honeydew (you do love your melons!) or even "chock-it" ~ when I pulled out the camera.

Legos were your distraction at the moment, but puzzles and books often cause you to get lost in your own little world for a while.  While you love to run, and I suspect that soccer is going to be a favorite sport for you, you love to sit and build cars and planes out of Legos, flip through books both new and familiar, and you can rock out 48, 70 and even 100 piece puzzles like nobody's business.

Thankfully a few minutes later I figured out how to snap you out of Legomania.  Waving your gifts wrapped in Thomas Christmas paper (sorry kid, you may be the baby, but there is a small curse that comes with being the 4th) under your nose caught your attention.

sporting your free t-shirt from your free haircut at penney's ~ currently your very favorite shirt
The day was broken up by going to see who Caleb and Darcy will have for kindergarten teachers, but you didn't mind one bit.  A trip to the school provided another opportunity for you to inform folks that it was your birthday.  And a funny thing happened.  Somewhere between the start of the day and when you talked to Caleb's teacher, you went from 4 to 4 1/2 ~ at least according to you.  Stop growing up on me already kid!

Then it was off to dinner.  Neither your daddy nor I was surprised that you requested the Chinese "fuf-fay."  You put a hurtin' on some won-ton soup, black pepper chicken, and stir-fried broccoli, but you attracted lots of attention from the waitresses and other customers with your fruit eating ability.

Then you finally got to open your first gift.  Last year Lightning McQueen may have been your favorite, but a super spy has moved in.  Finn is currently your favorite character.

Did I mention that the waitresses had noticed you?

Let me rephrase that.  I watched those girls carefully.  I think that if I had turned my head too long one of them would have made a break for it with you in their arms.  I'm sort of kidding.  You know exactly how to turn on the charm to captivate.  On your birthday it resulted in a little makeshift cake being brought to our table.

a piece of mocha cake surrounded by cut up jello cubes and dollops of whipped cream ~ certainly creative
Then we headed to a cupcake place that we've heard folks rave about for a while.  'Cause what's a birthday without cupcakes?

But when we got there the shop was already closed.  You had been so excited about a birthday "cake cake" all day and your disappointment showed.  Thankfully Daddy was on his feet and taking a cue from your exclamation of being 4 1/2 earlier in the day, Daddy asked if you wanted to come back to get a cake cake the next day or if you wanted to go get a donut.

You giggled, threw your arms over your head and said, "Donuts?  I LOVE donuts!" and sounded just like the character from the Tokyo Mater video.   So even though we'll be hitting the donut shop twice in early September for your sisters' half birthdays, we went to enjoy a sweet treat to celebrate you.

Your flavor of choice?  The current county fair special:  cotton candy.  But eating the donut was only half of your excitement.  I think you may have enjoyed watching donuts being made even just a little more.  Maybe you had too much watermelon earlier?

And then the moment you had been eagerly anticipating all day long.  Opening your presents.  Between what we had selected for you and what your grandmas and aunt sent, your bases were covered.  There were legos, puzzles, trains, cars and card games.

Happy birthday to my littlest one.  Oh the laughter and joy you have brought us in the last year.  You have redefined who we are as a family and life is fuller for it.  Your spontaneous hugs and kisses help make the world go round.  I am so blessed to be your mommy!


prechrswife said...

Happy Birthday, Sweet Daniel! I can't believe you are already 4!

Traci said...

Happy Birthday Sweet sweet boy! Aunt Cici misses you! Hope you stay 4 forever! ;)

Julie said...

Happy Happy Birthday Daniel! Hard to believe he's 4! Donuts are a great way to celebrate!

Grzegorz Laskowski said...

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Our Journey to China said...

Love this precious punkin'! My how he has grown! Happy Birthday, Sweet Daniel!

Grandma Shultz said...

Happy Birthday to Grandma's baby. You are such a little bundle of joy.
Your hugs around the knees and your kisses make my heart jump for joy.
I love you.

Heather said...

I didn't think that kiddo could possibly get any cuter! And yet, he does. He definitely has some extra dose of adorable! Happy Birthday Daniel!

Glenda said...

Happy birthday to our cutie-pie buddy, Daniel. You've grown tons this year, and I can't wait to see what the coming years will bring. God has big plans for you. We love you!

anything but LoKEY said...

This is so sweet! It seems like just yesterday that you guys brought him home. Happy Birthday, Daniel! :)

Nancy said...

Happy birthday, little man!