She woke up to her birthday gift from us... a kitchen! (All we needed was another gigantic toy taking up precious space in our living room.)
Sharing a kiss with her bouncy horse, named Red.
Later in the day, she opened some more presents. Believe it or not, after five Christmas celebrations and a birthday all crammed into a week, even a two-year-old gets bored with unwrapping gifts.
We did a practice run with birthday cupcakes in preparation for her party later in the week.
We tried to keep her party small, but just inviting our immediate families brings the guest list up to about 20, so we'll just say it was a smaller-than-usual gathering for us. If there's one thing I've learned in two years, it's that I'm perhaps not cut out to make a homemade cake for each birthday. Last year's cake was a success, but only because my mom was responsible for about 98% of it, including the decorating. This year I tried it on my own and the results were... mediocre. The big cupcake looks ok in the picture, but it was pretty sloppy up close, and looked absolutely nothing like the picture in my mind. As for the small cupcakes, let's not even talk about it. At least it all tasted good!
The birthday girl took a snooze on the couch before the party.
I'm thinking that since cake decorating doesn't seem to be my strong suit, maybe I should go into preparing meat/cheese trays instead. Check out that symmetry!
Along with her cousins Brennan and Graden, Marla's buddies Sydney, Lizzy, and Isabella all came to celebrate. Apparently a houseful of toys is no match for a set of stairs, which somehow kept the kids occupied for most of the party. Who would've thought?
Hanging out with her cake while we all sing Happy Birthday.
If this picture isn't proof that we need to buy a house ASAP, I don't know what is. I'm so glad our families and friends are such good sports and don't mind being crammed together like sardines. Would you believe me if I said this shows only about a third of the people in our apartment that day?
It took her about an hour to open all her gifts. It's hard to stay focused when every present needs to be played with immediately!
All in all, Marla had a great birthday party and we all had a lot of fun. Can't wait to do it again next year. I'll end with a video of the crucial moment.