we just can't even believe our baby girl is eight years old. how? how did that happen so quickly?
we've been celebrating for a couple weeks, just as one should for such an important milestone!
on her birthday morning she had pancakes with sprinkles and whipped cream along with presents from both grandparents!!!
i just love these sleepy face pictures!
this soft monkey from grandma janie has been her cuddle buddy every night these past couple weeks.
as we were driving to school i looked in the back and there was ellie, dressing her doll in her new outfit from grandma.
the little boys and i joined ellie and jack for lunch at school. we had to take a picture wearing our BFF necklaces. i love that she still likes me and hasn't decided that mom isn't cool yet :)
daddy took ellie out for her birthday dinner to Fuji, which is a Japanese steakhouse. Fuji is jack's favorite restaurant because of the sushi, so we were all surprised that ellie picked it. she said that she wanted to try something out of the usual.... and they have steak, which she loves!
ellie invited three friends over for a little party on the 15th because they didn't have any school. she thought long and hard about what kind of party she wanted to have. i guess when you don't have a party with friends every year, you really have to put some thought into the ones you do. so after some thinking she decided to have a
Cupcake Wars Party!!!
we divided into two teams and i gave the girls 2 timed challenges that they had to complete without any help. The challenges were related to the birthday girl in some way.
the first challenge was to use a white cake mix (ellie's favorite cake) and doctor it up in some way so it wasn't an ordinary white cake mix.
the second challenge was done while the first challenge was baking and cooling. it was pretty simple: decorate some pre-made cupcakes using the color mint green, ellie's favorite.
once the second challenge was completed, they had to decorate their first batch of cupcakes. i was pretty impressed that the girls could plan, follow recipes, and execute their ideas so quickly. they made two different types of frostings from scratch, one team filled one batch of cupcakes with a cream cheese filling, and one team even made a chocolate ganache.
in the end we had two surprise judges (the other girls' mamas) come and do a blind taste test to decide the winning team. it came down to just one point! ellie's team did not win, but the girls all had a blast!
this was definitely a fun party to have with kids this age, especially since these girls are competitive and like to smack-talk a bit, but i have to be completely honest: it was exhausting! i was running all around the kitchen trying to keep mixing bowls, measuring cups, and utensils washed and ready for each team, not to mention cleaning up all the piles of powdered sugar and sprinkles! that wasn't necessarily a bad thing, it just meant that i didn't get as many pictures as i would have liked to. i'd totally do it again if one of the other kids wanted to do it sometime.
as i've typed this post, i've also been busy getting floral arrangements together, a cake frosted, a white jumpsuit and 2 dress shirts laundered, and a new set of scriptures with the name Ellie Jane Brower engraved on them wrapped and ready, all in preparation for tomorrow. tomorrow is a big day! ellie is getting baptized tomorrow evening and she couldn't be more excited! she has been counting down the days. she's a beautiful girl, inside and out, and we are so proud of the little lady she is turning in to. she is quick, she is sassy, she is loving, she is creative, she is happy, she is tough, she is daring, she is determined, she is beautiful, and she is going to be one heck of a woman when she grows up! but she always be our baby girl.