Sunday, May 4, 2014

Feliz Cumpleaños Liam! Liam Turns 7!

I can't believe yet another year has gone by and Liam is now 7!  Not only is my baby not a baby any more, but he's lived well more than half of his life here in Barcelona.  My Spanish Liam :)  It still blows my mind to think of it from that perspective.

Six was a great year for Liam.  He's loved first grade and has so many friends in his class.  He's a social butterfly, always has been.  Yet he doesn't like to be the center of attention (unless he's at home where he pretty much demands it!).  He is incredibly kind to others and has such a big heart.  He's gossipy which makes me laugh - always telling me who is "dating" who at school.  He's smart.  He loves school and learning.  Though he did try to tell me recently that his teacher told him he was only "allowed" to read at bedtime and bedtime only.  Did I mention he's also a bit manipulative?  ;)

I love how much Liam has grown this year.  While he's not a big kid quite yet like his brother, he is certainly getting there.  He embraces being the baby and yet, he's becoming more independent each day.  He's witty.  He loves sarcasm (thank you Big Bang Theory).  He is full of imagination - an imagination that I'm incredibly envious of.  He likes to make people smile and laugh and his laughter is contagious.  He is just a happy kid.

Liam's birthday celebration managed to go all weekend long.  It started off on Wednesday with cupcakes at school.  With a 4 day weekend that included Liam's birthday, it was a great way to kick off the celebrations.  The kids did a really cute song to Liam and then asked him questions and gave him compliments - I think everyone should get something like this on their birthday!!

Mmmmm cupcakes...

The birthday boy!

Liam's class doing a song and dance around him

Liam's classmates asking questions and giving compliments

Eating those yummy cupcakes!

Liam's class singing Happy birthday and more!

On his actual birthday we started off the day opening presents.  In an attempt to not have a ridiculously early morning (on a long holiday weekend), we had him put one present in our bed to open first thing in the morning and then we would snuggle til it was time to go downstairs to open the rest.  Surprisingly, Aidan got up before Liam and then woke up his brother.  I guess he was just as excited to see what presents Liam was getting for his big day.

One last sleep as a 6 year old - when he wakes up, he'll be 7!

We finally made our way downstairs for the official opening of presents and Liam was pretty excited at what he got.  Lots and lots of legos!  He was very excited for his new Ninja Turtles and he also got a cool Captain America shield that shoots nerf bullets - that was a very big hit!

Presents waiting to be opened!

Legos!  This one included the Hulk and Captain America - it doesn't get much better than that!

So excited for Ninja Turtles!!

Very serious about his unwrapping here

The Captain America shield

And our tradition is the sibling gets to open something small - Aidan got some Hobbit legos (and Liam will open a gift on Aidan's birthday next weekend).

In the afternoon, Liam was very excited to go see the new Spiderman movie.  Yeah, this is one I wish Josh and I had seen ahead of time.  It was a bit more violent than we had anticipated.  And it required some eye covering and even at one point Aidan insisted on leaving the theater (we went back in a few minutes later).  But Liam still loved it.  There was still more fun to come though - dinner at our favorite Greek restaurant along with some plate smashing!!

So happy after seeing his movie!

A little gangsta???

I'm glad that we went to the earlier movie as we had originally planned to go to a later one and then head off to dinner.  But as it was, we went to dinner for 9pm and didn't finish til 11!!  If we'd done the later movie we probably wouldn't have gotten to dinner til closer to 10!  Yes, it was a late late night for the birthday boy (and for us!).

On our way to dinner

Last week my friend Jodi and I went to dinner at my favorite Greek restaurant Dionisos.  While I had been there for lunch many times, I had never been for dinner.  Apparently on Friday and Saturday nights they do traditional Greek dancing and plate breaking.  When I mentioned this to Liam, he insisted he wanted to go for his birthday.

Now as we live in Barcelona, keep in mind that restaurants don't even open for dinner until 8 or 8:30. Our kids rarely go to dinner here unless it's tapas (open all the time) or something like Hard Rock which is open on more touristy hours.  But rarely do they step inside a restaurant during traditional dinner hours here.  So we knew this was going to be a stretch for them to go to the restaurant for 9PM and to make it to plate breaking at 10.  The only thing we had on our side was that it was still light out when we left for the restaurant (thank you spring time late sunsets!) so it felt earlier than it actually was. Though it didn't take long at the restaurant before Aidan started to melt down and beg to go home to bed.  In the end, he had a good time but both kids were asleep within moments of their heads hitting the pillows later!

Josh and I are regulars at this restaurant and while we don't know the waiters names (nor they ours), they know we are here all the time and they took extra special care to make Liam's birthday wonderful. They played a birthday song when they brought out his ice cream and the boys were the only ones allowed to smash the plates that evening!
Liam loves his Greek food!

So we get to break these plates?

A little birthday ice cream  Liam' blowing out candle

Waiting, waiting and waiting til they can smash some plates!  Greek dancing with some plate smashing on the dancer's head! Some more Greek dancing  Finally some plate smashing around 1:13 - of course, I just missed him doing it but you can catch some of it and of course, the aftermath of repeated plate piece breaking!  Some more plate breaking (though not by the boys)

So Wednesday cupcakes, Friday presents, Spiderman and dinner and then Saturday was the big slumber party!  The fun never ends!  We are so lucky that Liam has a fantastic group of friends.  He had 5 friends come over late afternoon and stayed the night.  They ran and played all afternoon.  We did pizza, cupcakes and then a movie (plus some tv because they still weren't tired at 10!).  I have no idea how they made it as late as they did but it was 11 before they were all in bed.

It's hard to see close up but they've all got super hero costumes or helmets on as they are battling poor Aidan!

Aidan made his own table

The birthday boy (or the back of his head) and his friends

Loving his day with his friends!
A quick and silly Happy Birthday from his friends

Opening presents - they know him well.  A Captain America shield (can't hurt to have 2), Captain America helmet and an Angry Bird gun that shoots rubber balls.  Ahhh the joy of boys!

Yes, it is still light out but believe it or not, it was probably 830 at this point!

This morning they started to wake around 6:45 but now that they are getting older, they are becoming more considerate of each other and they actually let each other sleep as they woke.  One up at 6:45, another at 7:15, 7:45, 8 and then 8:45.  Once everyone was up though, you could not keep these kids quiet!!
The last few still asleep this AM

They played great all morning til their parents came to get them around 10:30AM.  They were outside by 9am which I'm sure the neighbors appreciated (though in my defense I hear all the other kids at 10 or 11 at night).  I think overall it was a huge success and Liam had a great time!!

Perhaps in hindsight a late dinner on his birthday and then a slumber party the next night was not such a great idea.  Two very late nights.  But I think he had fun so it was worth it.  As I type this, he was in bed by 7:30 on Sunday night - totally and completely done!!

I still can't believe my baby is 7 - and he's already talking about what it will be like when he turns 8!  I say, enjoy the time - you are only young once!  Feliz cumpleaños my sweet baby Liam!!  I love you to the moon and back and more everyday!!


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