So before our newest member of the family joins our ranks in the next few weeks, I thought it was important to blog Ella Bella's birthday! because how did she go from that teeny tiny little newborn to this bright vivacious 4 year old in the blink of an eye?!
Seriously, I know it's the cliche-st cliche out there, but time just moves so quickly! and in a few short months she will be starting school!!! I cannot get my head around that! (even though she is definitely more than ready!)
Her birthday, on the 8th Feb, began with some present opening! We thought she would be super excited for this cupcake and doughnut print pink bike we found for her! We had been telling her for months that once she had mastered her balance bike she could get her own pedal bike (complete with a seat for monkey or a doll at the back - that bit was very important!) but actually she wasn't too sure about those pedals! and when we took her for a spin later that day cried about that silly bike with pedals and asked why she had to have pedals at all!!! (nearly 3 months down the line she is much happier about pedals and has now nearly almost mastered the pedal bike too!)
She also got the next size up car seat (in pink as requested) and so her prezzies were more practical I guess, so she was very happy to be having her little friends come over later that afternoon to bring the good stuff!
Every year I do a monthly photo banner, showing just how she's grown up over the year! I was especially pleased to find this unicorn birthday banner online too to go with it!
Ella always plans her themes a long time in advance (she apparently already has every party lined up from now until she turns 10!! although I keep telling her that may change as her interests change!) so she had been talking about a unicorn party for a long time, and it just so happened that it co-incided with a unicorn boom! so it was pretty easy to find unicorn tableware everywhere I looked!
I loved those serviettes! and the pretty pastel plates and party hats complete with ribbons.
The tablecloth also had golden unicorns around the border.
Ella helped me bake up these chocolate cupcakes, and requested rainbow frosting with these little unicorn and rainbow fondant toppers.
I also loved these unicorn cookies I found online from the amazing Cookie Pop Shop and we had them as party favours to go along with the party bags.
I also found this adorable unicorn play doh through The Dotty Dough Factory, I thought it was a super fun addition to all the other pony/unicorn bits we managed to find! Party bags are always one of my fave parts of the party planning!
We spent a long time picking out the perfect unicorn party dress! and so it was a quick change when she got in from nursery before all her friends arrived for the party.
We wasted no time in cracking on with the party games - Ella was determined that she was going to win them all!! because apparently she had been practicing lots of musical bumps and musical statues at nursery in the weeks leading up to the party!
She didn't actually end up winning any of the musical games, but did win pin the horn on the unicorn which she was pretty pleased about!
Pass the parcel is always a fun one,
and we played hide the pony in the garden.
I think Daddy forgot how small 3 and 4 year olds are and so his high up hiding place was a bit too tricky for them to spot!
After all the games it was time to finish off with a cupcake! and luckily no one blew out her candle this time around (she was still traumatised from last year when her candles got blown out at both her parties by other kids!)
and she got so spoilt by all her lovely friends, and received a rather impressive collection of unicorn themed birthday cards too!
I have to say a big shout out to Daddy too - I had come down with awful flu the whole week and so he prepped all the food for the party, even down to the unicorn shaped sandwiches which proved more fiddly than he would have wanted! but I couldn't have done it without him and was so grateful he had taken the day off work!
The next day Byron had also taken off work, so we went for a birthday day of fun to Cumbria! Try as we might Ella still wanted to stick with her tradition of visiting a farm park despite the freezing conditions outside! so we wrapped up super warm - with her unicorn hat from Granny Kathy coming in super handy! and we had a super fun day out regardless of the baltic wind!
We went to Walby Farm Park and it was a great day out. Ella is just animal crazy! and so she loved getting to see all the farmyard animals like these super friendly goats...
and feeding the bunnies was also a highlight.
In between the timed little animal slots, we would duck into the soft play to warm up!
It was actually really big and better than expected and Ella could have spent all day in just the soft play and been happy!
Getting to pet a real life pony was pretty exciting for her!
and some more animal feeding!
Of course no birthday fun is complete without ice cream!
The next day was Saturday and it was time for round 2 of her party when all my family came up to celebrate!
Auntie Mara again stepped into help (so I didn't infect anyone, as I was still pretty ill) and helped decorate these rainbow marshmallows with chocolate unicorns!
We also decorated this unicorn cake together, that Ella had been really looking forward to!
She was also super excited to get this turquoise and purple unicorn headband from Auntie Mara that morning! just in time for her party get up!
We grabbed a family pic with the birthday girl!
and here's the food table part 2 in all its glory!
There was a whole lot of present opening thanks to everyone being super generous!
and then more party games! This was unicorn musical bumps.
Ellis and Mia trying their luck at pin the horn on the unicorn...
and even Granny getting involved, and failing miserably!
I think Ella won round 2 of this again!
Daddy teaching Ella and Mia how to change a nappy! (showing he still knows how ahead of baby B arriving imminently!) Ella got a baby Annabel doll from Auntie Alli that she is smitten with, and Mia was pretty keen on her too!
We finished off the party with another happy birthday rendition and more cake!
It was certainly a busy 3 days! but birthdays that drag on are always the best kind right?!
So here are some things I want to remember about our 4 year old:
Her love of the outdoors, and nature! She loves a woodland wander in almost any weather (she has to living in the country we live in!) This was a snowdrop walk we went on in Peebles.
and she really loves flower spotting just like me!
She is already getting excited for the few cherry blossoms that are beginning to bloom and for some bluebells just appearing in the woods behind her house
(although in her prayers at night she says she is grateful for pretend flowers too because she doesn't like it when flowers die!) Lately she has been wanting her own vase of flowers in her room everytime I buy some new flowers for the kitchen table!
and it just makes my heart happy that she loves flowers as much as I do!
Her love of the world! Despite not having travelled to too many other countries herself, she certainly has a thirst for travel and seeing new places! She often just randomly drops into conversation how she can't wait to go to New Zealand or asks when we can go to Canada! (this is the question we are all asking!!) and of course she is always wanting to head back to London! She loves to learn facts about the world - she has a favourite tv programme on Netflix she watches called 'Justin Time' he goes and visits different countries around the world and so she will often just come out with random facts like about what a mirage is or she'll remind me not to ski when there's an avalanche!! or will tell me that fireflies live in New Orleans!
She loves church! and has been working at being a great little missionary lately, even asking her little friends at nursery if they believe in Jesus and God! We went to the Temple for the first time that she can remember and she was just so excited to be there! and just prayed in her prayers this week at bedtime and said 'wasn't it so cool that we went to the Temple'!!! She loves to sing primary songs and really takes in the messages from the animated scripture stories we read each night before bed. One night we read the parable about the lost coin in Luke, and a few weeks later when we were talking about someone we knew who didn't go to church anymore she turned to me and said 'they're like the lost coin from the story aren't they mommy?'
She got her own little set of scriptures from the Temple which she was thrilled about! and we have started going to church in Edinburgh once a month so that she gets to have a proper primary experience with other children and she has really been enjoying this!
Here she is singing 'I am a Child of God' whilst she does her little handwriting book!
Another of her favourite things right now is writing and spelling words! If she has 10 minutes spare she will choose for fun to work on her handwriting! She really enjoys writing and can write about 10 different words from memory like mum, dad, milo, cat, dog etc.. that's why I think she is just going to lap everything up at school! She is also really into drawing just now, and her pictures have suddenly just really improved where you can make out what she's drawing now quite clearly and drawing different people are her favourite thing to do! She made this family picture for Daddy's birthday recently, and I loved everyone she drew - especially Milo and Roxy!
I also think her handwriting is so neat and small for a 4 year old! She wrote 'I love my Daddy' for this photo frame gift we made for By:
Another favourite hobby is building lego! She got that cute little ice cream van as a birthday gift from her friend Juniper, and has been hooked on building lego sets ever since! She got the Frozen one a few weeks later from Uncle Cam, and has now just finished a new Elsa and Anna one too. I'm impressed at how she perseveres with each step and follows the instructions really well to build each thing!
She is still super into arts and crafts...loves to paint,
make pictures with sand art,
and she loves a sticker book - especially when it involves unicorns!
and naturally she is her mommy's daughter and so she still just loves to bake! She is really great at mixing and measuring things out, but takes particular joy in licking the bowls and spatulas at the end of course!
I couldn't be prouder of the loving little girl she has turned into! She makes our life and everyone's around her that little bit brighter! She is SO excited about becoming a big sister, and I just know she will be the best helper when baby arrives!