Weekending: Celebrating Birthdays with Friends and Family

It isn’t a birthday without a small celebration — right? Sophia turned two on Friday and our family and friends came together to celebrate on Saturday. Nothing fancy, just adults catching up, kids playing with one another, decorating pumpkins and a little bit of mac-n-cheese and chocolate cake… That’s the summary of the weekend because quite frankly, there was nothing done yesterday except some major putting up of feet to rest from all the festivities… and the recent plague Sophia and I were besieged with.

Of course I know you’d like the details about the birthday party, so here goes: the theme was butterflies and bugs and the invitation was blue, yellow and most importantly orange (Sophia’s absolute favorite color)!  We invited our friends and family and a few of Sophia’s neighborhood friends. After all, this is her party and she should ring it in with her friends. All in all, ten children between ages 1 and 9. The menu had to be simple since there was quite a crowd (~40 people) and included Philadelphia style hoagies, mac-n-cheese, Tuscan stewed chickpeas, herbed quinoa, fritata, veggies and dip, hummus, roasted pepper hummus, asian green salad with napa cabbage, sweet and sour meatballs and to really make sure everyone was fortified — a cheese plate with a petit salumi platter. You don’t believe? Here… look!




We opted to purchase the hoagies so that we can focus on making everything else. They came from Taylor Gourmet Deli — and since the President thinks they are good, I figured so would our guests.  We did have help with the food: my mother-in-law made her signature sweet and sour meatballs and my mother made her signature asian salad. We’ll talk about desserts and who contributed there in a bit.

Food is great and so are the german beers Evan picked up in honor of Oktoberfest, but you have to have entertainment at a kids’ party. So… thankfully, my mother-in-law who is an early education specialist, suggested pumpkin decorating. I admit, I was rather skeptical — picturing glitter everywhere and glue all over my furniture, but it went over swimmingly. The kids were thrilled to do it and enjoyed taking home the fruits of their labor.




All the decorating and chaperoning of the decorators led to quite an appetite for some cake! If there was one thing that I insisted on doing, it would be to make my daughter a home-made [multi-layer] birthday cake. I wouldn’t mind having the affair catered, but the cake, the cake was going to be mine. This, ladies and gentlemen was no ordinary cake — it was a three-layer, moist chocolate cake with chocolate buttercream on the inside and vanilla buttercream on the outside. When fully assembled it measured 8 inches. That’s EIGHT inches! I like BIG! I decorated it with edible butterflies, too!


Bday2There was another cake, the picture missing because it was too good and went flying off the platter before I could snap a picture. It was a poppy-seed cake so moist it would blow your socks off made by non-other than my sister.

Bday3Here are Evan and I with the birthday girl right before and during the blowing out of the candles. My sister-in-law and soon-to-be-brother-in-law took the pictures and I guess things got too busy and there are none of us together … but you can just imagine that. Beggars can’t be choosers! The party was great, the birthday girl happy about her cake and presents and balloons, of course. Evan and I feel very loved and are profoundly grateful to all our family and friends who made a 2+ hour journey from Pennsylvania and Delaware with young children in tow.

Oh, oh, oh! Before I forget … besides the pumpkins as party favors for the children, each kiddo got a home-made dirt cake Evan and I put together in mason jars with bugs and creatures (all edible) hidden inside. Besides… what parent wouldn’t want a kid on yet another sugar high after the one from the chocolate cake wears of?!

Until next year!






  1. Dana said:

    Oh, she’s such an angel in this pink dress! Happy birthday, sweet princess!

    October 14, 2013
    • Nadya said:

      Aww, thank you! You have no idea the effort it took to get her into this dress. She’s a tomboy at heart, I think. I like it — 🙂 Hope all is well with you and yours.

      October 15, 2013

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