Monday, February 10, 2014

Turning 10 - Double Digits!! Birthday in France

A kid's Birthday party - 10 years old

Cakes from the local Patisserie

Joyeux Anniversaire to my middle daughter - Wow!!  Double digits!  10 years!  How the time has flown by...I still remember when she was a baby - she was the heaviest and the longest of all three of my girls - weighing 9 lbs 6 oz and 22.5 inches long. She was and still is my cuddler, she loved watching her older sister, she was shy, she was calm and always very sweet.  She has always been tall - always towered over her friends -she was born long and off the growth charts in height and still is. Her height is a great asset but she's still waiting to be convinced.  It's hard to stay coordinated when you grow so fast. She's always enjoyed her friends - always a few very special ones.  She's caring, sensitive, loyal and very curious about how things work.   Oh, the stories I can tell about her curiosity - but that would be for another post!!  Let's just say - she may study engineering one day or become a veterinarian.

Her birthday fell on a Thursday this year.  We did the family celebration that night - her request - hamburgers and French fries for dinner and cakes from the local patisserie for dessert.  (Yes, dinner may be American but dessert -bien sur -French!).  She received a fun Molly Bracken sweater, a bracelet and a BD (graphic comic book) that she requested.  These books have become her newest love and France has many different ones to choose from.  

Her new BD

Fun Molly Bracken sweater

Special bracelet for turning 10
So what does one do to celebrate such a special day - a milestone in birthdays?  Ten years old - my daughter wanted her first slumber party! She invited 5 special friends and they all enjoyed an evening of pizza, cake, crafts and of course a dance party!!

Making the house a bit festive!
Parties seems to be getting a bit easier as they get older - at least right now...but I'm thinking as they get even older - there will be other concerns - but for now- it's a great age.  Figure out food, activities and at this age, they pretty much take it from there.  The friends arrived at 7:30 pm - by French time - this meant I had to be specific if I was going to feed them or not.  (Here's a cultural difference - 7:30 pm in the States would mean after dinner - but here that's dinner time for the most part.).  Knowing that many families work and often don't eat until then, I served the girls pizza soon after everyone arrived.

We then had delicious cupcakes for dessert. (Back-story here - I bought them from a wonderful cupcake baker in Bordeaux & since I was in Bordeaux for the day - I picked them up instead of having them delivered to our house.  Needless to say - a crowded tram and a box of cupcakes are not a great mix.  Even though the baker had put them in a wonderful individualized box - I got bumped as I was exiting the tram at my stop and all the cupcakes bounced over to one side of the box.  I cringed at the disaster of frosting and cupcakes molded together as some sort of sculpture - but knowing there was not much I could do, I waited until I got home and refrosted each cake - cleaning off frosting from the paper cups.  The finished product ended up looking great - with an addition of some sprinkles that I had - one would never have known - but I share this here as life is not always perfect and the final result doesn't always tell the whole story!)

The super yummy - Red Velvet/Cream cheese & Chocolate Rapsberry cupcakes - after being repaired.
We then cleared the table and made room for the craft activity - decopaging little boxes.  This was a great activity for this age, as they had the patience to take their time and create something original and at the same time it took about an hour or so to complete.

Even my youngest did one (with my help)
 Their finished products came out very nicely - each one unique.

It was then gift time.  For any child - this is their favorite part of the party - who doesn't want to be the center of attention and receive gifts? It's funny to see how gift opening goes at French birthday parties.  I've watched this now for 2 years and 3 kids and numerous parties - and it's always the same.  Each guest picks up their gift from the gift table and then they all gather around the birthday child.  They then hand their gifts to the birthday child - all trying to get theirs opened when they want.  Some children want theirs opened first, others wait until last. They cluster and crowd - It's a bit of a frenzy but it seems to work.  There are often no cards to open, just the gift themselves.  Kisses and "merci" are giving to each child.  (It's not customary here to send thank you notes for kid parties - one less thing to worry about.). Now, if you are French and you are reading this - the contrast is in the States - a gift pile is placed next to the child, who opens them one at a time and guests are sat at a reasonable distance, so everyone can see equally.    

Enjoying her new art books!

She loved all of her gifts - most of them fashion styling art books which have been a great hit in this house since the party!

Finally it was time to dance - Keep in mind it's about 11 pm now!!  I figured let them dance and get their energy out and maybe, just maybe they will sleep!

After they danced, we set up the living room with air mattresses and settled everyone in for the night.  The girls overall were pretty quiet.  They watched a DVD movie (or 2) - and most apparently nodded off to sleep.  In the morning, we were told a couple of them were awake until around 3 am - but hey, what are slumber parties for anyway?  It's also the reason I chose to have this one on a Friday night - they could all catch up on their sleep on Saturday!

Happy 10th Birthday to my beautiful middle daughter - may her year be full of happiness, love and light!

1 comment:

  1. I would be so in trouble in France with desserts like that! Happy 10 th birthday to your daughter! Looks like her party was a huge success.


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