Yesterday was my babies 8th birthday. It really doesn’t seem possible that he has aged so quickly!!!
It has been a long week for him, and the strain of the build up to the special day has meant he has been extremely volatile, exploding with little or no provocation. I suppose the best bit about these sort of situations as a parent, is that you have bribery material as in the shape of presents and parties!!!
I had spent a lot of the week organising his cake. He had asked for a Minecraft theme, and he insisted on helping me. I looked at many people’s cakes online and I admit to stealing ideas from some of them to meld together into what we finally came up with. The actual cake had to be gluten free because D’s best friend has to follow this type of diet, so for D it was a no brainer that the cake was made this way. D and I had great fun working with fondant icing creating the characters to place on the cake, the only problem being M kept coming to the kitchen to steal bits of icing! D was very proud to have made a figure all by himself, and while it might not have been perfectly formed, it was perfectly made, because of the effort and love that he put into it. His man took pride of place at the front of the cake.
I felt the final cake looked a little cluttered, but my artistic advisor, aka D, insisted all the characters were present, including Stampy Cat, a Creeper, a pig, etc, and of course, Super Epic Dan – his YouTube channel name! I was very proud of how it looked, but he forbid me to show anyone photos of it before the day!
Yesterday morning, he was up before the larks. Both he and M were super excited, while his Dad and I were far less enthusiastic at 6am on a Sunday morning! He had asked for everything he had seen as presents, but had not really been committed to any one thing, so all the presents he got were surprises to him. His main present was a PS3. Many people are surprised that we encourage the gaming with our boys, but it is something they both love, and D really enjoys making his videos, so I believe it helps with his confidence. It was very funny when we gave it to him. Hubby had set it up the night before, but made sure it wasn’t in plain sight. We then wrapped some games. He opened the first game for the PS3, and was quite confused, asking me if I had bought it on the wrong system. I told him that was what must have happened – he was quite prepared to believe I was that stupid!!! When he opened the second game, he was becoming suspicious, and I am sure the folk in the next town heard the screams of excitement when he put two and two together and looked for the machine! He was over the moon.
The one other present he got that really excited him was a punch bag. He enthusiastically put on the gloves and started hitting the bag. Hopefully it will not just be good exercise for him, but also be a way of honing his aggression.
He was a happy boy, with all of his gifts.
The afternoon was party time. We had hired a local community centre with a couple of bouncy castles. He had invited his whole class, plus a few other friends, as well as their siblings – D always wants siblings invited to his parties, and I am sure it is because he sees M rarely invited to functions and he feels a little guilty about this. We ended up with 27 kids, and it was loud! As well as the bouncy castles, we set up a craft area, and had temporary tattoos. It all ran really smoothly, thanks to some lovely Mums who volunteered to help supervise activities – I think it says a lot about D that as soon as I mentioned he was having a party, and definitely before the invitations went out, there were Mums telling me they were wanting to help out. D had asked me to just do snack foods, and asked if they could be grown ups by having it buffet style! There were sausage rolls, sausages, crisps, biscuits, and sucky yoghurts – the ones in tubes probably have a special name but I’m sure you know what I mean! The kids seemed to enjoy taking what they wanted, rather than having mixed plate sat in front of all of them, and it also meant less waste, and enough food for the adults to tuck in when the screaming masses had eaten!
For two boys that profess to hate each other, it was funny to see they insisted on sitting next to each other.
The cake was a huge success with everyone, and two of his friends asked me if I would make their cakes when it came to their birthdays – rather embarrassingly done in front of their mother!
D had a fabulous afternoon running wild with his friends. It was rather more difficult of M who finds noisy, random situations quite disturbing. He did go on the bouncy castles when they were quieter, but spent much of the time hanging around me. The whole day was hard for him, as he had to take a step back and allow his brother to be priority, something he never likes doing. He did have a couple of minor meltdowns, and frustration outbursts, but nothing too much. He was an excellent big brother.
When we got home, D opened the presents from his friends, and they all know him very well, with copious amounts of Lego, and Star Wars merchandise on offer – and not a double in sight! I think our recycling bin will be overflowing with the amount of wrapping paper torn to shreds!
As the afternoon turned to evening, D was getting tired, and therefore his control was getting thready with several violent outbursts. At one point he caught his Dad in the face, and I think he was lucky there wasn’t a broken pair of glasses to show for it. It was not violence because he wanted to hurt anyone, but more the frustration of so much to process that his poor brain couldn’t cope with it, and he just exploded. I held him tight as he calmed down, returning to happy birthday boy. He went to bed shattered. He kept saying he was too buzzed to sleep, but I’m not sure if his head was actually touching the pillow when he started snoring.
Well, that’s his birthday over for another year, but he’s already telling me what cake he wants for the next one! UGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!