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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Happy Birthday and Happy New Year!

We've been a little busy since Mika went back to school in January. Chinese New Years has become a big deal in our house. We've been celebrating since mid-January and have a final Fun Lunch at the school this Friday to end it.

Mika joined an after school traditional chinese dance group late last year. They practice every Tuesday and hit the stage for the first time on February 5, at the City Centre New Years Celebration. The girls did wonderfully. Mika was happy to have both her in-town Grandma's there and thrilled that her friends Saoirse and Brighid came out to watch too. We went straight from downtown to a family birthday party at Tony Roma's in WEM with Clan Cunningham. Grandpa (papa) Don and Susan, Aunties Janis, Dawn, and Shannon, cousins Madi, Ethan, and Amiah, Uncle Jeremy, new-to-us Auntie Lisa and 'cousins' Emma and Aidan. Full house! Mika was sullen and reserved as usual. She felt she didn't dance well enough that afternoon and was mentally beating herself up inside. Poor kid. The mistakes that she thinks she makes are difficult to discern. We watched a video of the performance and she points out mistakes that I am unable to see, which adds to her frustration. Declan, on the other hand, was in fine form that night entertaining the table and flirting with his beautiful Aunties.
The next day was Declan's 4th Birthday! My baby boy is 4. He and Mika had been conspiring about what to do on their 'real' birthdays. I told them they could each pick something to do, but it was going to be just us. Friends can come out for the party later in the month. Between them, they decided on Chuck E Cheese for Declan's day and supper in a restaurant and bowling on Mika's. After Declan blew through his presents, off we went. Nana and I held down the table while Danny and the kids ran around like headless chickens. Thankfully Declan wanted an easy cake - a hockey rink again.
I noticed the change in Declan from a 3 year old toddler to a 4 year old boy a couple of weeks before his birthday. He must have hit a growth spurt as he's not too far behind Mika now. Still weighs in at 39 lbs. This year, the guy has been dragged to the school at least one afternoon per week, if not more. I think the experience has given him a bit of maturity, if that word can even be used when describing a 3-4 year old boy. He's quite bright, quite sneaky, and very very stubborn. His way or the highway and wow, can he hold a grudge. Declan still loves Star Wars, Spiderman, and the Hulk. He's recently discovered the Wii and loves to play Wii Fit, NHL Slapshot, and Mario Kart. He spells every word he sees and asks what it is "What does o-a-t-m-e-a-l spell?", I am not sure how high he counts. At least to 27 - he counts the encyclopedias at the school library every Thursday afternoon. Declan is doing very well in his ballet class and I am looking forward to his recital this spring. As of January, he's in an unparented gymnastics class and is doing very well, despite the coaches having to reel him in now and again. We're waiting to hear if there is a spot for Declan at the local community playschool. It's not looking hopeful, but we shall see. Technically Declan can start Kindergarten in the fall, but we would rather he has a year of playschool first.

In between the kids' birthday's was more chinese new years parties and performances. Oh, and Mika decided she is in love with Justin Bieber.

Feb 18th Mika turned 6. She had an entire long weekend planned. Mika's birthday was on a Friday and the school happened to be hosting an in-school field trip with Figura Theatre. Lovely! We brought in cupcakes for the class - Mika also handed some out to her fave staff members. Supper at Tony Roma's and Glow Bowling afterwards. We ran out of time to have cake that night. Mika requested a Poke Ball - thankfully another easy cake to create. Saturday the kids had gymnastics and we went straight from there to Claire's in St. Albert to get Mika's ears pierced. Just in case the piercing didn't go well, we made no other plans for Saturday other than hunker down with a movie. The ear piercing went well and Mika is very diligent about cleaning and twirling them. Sunday brought a breakfast brunch with Baba and Grandpa Ted as per Mika's request, followed by a birthday party for a boy in her class and a late afternoon playdate with her beloved Sammi. Monday was Family Day in Alberta. We went downtown to attend the last of the Chinese New Years festivals. Mika wanted to watch the senior girls dance group as well as her friend, Marco, perform with a drumming group. We also hit the Art Gallery and downtown library before calling it a day. My daughter knows how to fill a weekend...