Super Niece Helena Turns 4!

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Howdy everyone out there. Quick post to send out a great big Happy Birthday to my favourite niece in the entire galaxy. Helena celebrated her fourth birthday yesterday, on the 13th of April! She’s been quite excited about the big event some time now. In fact, a couple months ago she was already telling me that I’d be invited to her party. Lucky me, right? Well I think so, given that not too many people were invited personally by her 🙂 Instead of having to deal with a big group of little people in the middle of a work week, parents Andrea and Patrick opted to throw a little party for her over the weekend, and it went swimmingly well. The weather definitely co-operated, and the venue was a great location for a group of wired youngsters. If you’d like to check out how that unfolded, you can have a look at a set of pictures I put up on flickr. Afterward, come on back for a quick re-cap of the day.

As you are all pretty much aware, I’ve been pretty busy getting settled into my new place, as well as getting ready to tackle the Boston Marathon this weekend. As such, I’ve been trying to cram a lot of things into every day and every night. Sunday was no different, as I had to complete my last long run of the training plan. I got up bright and early and did a 16km run before the 10am start to the party. As a result, I was running a little late, but as it turned out, so were most of the guests, and even the Birthday girl! When I arrived just before 10:30am, it was Andrea, Rebecca, Sue, and one other person handling the decorating duties. I helped as best I could to set up streamers, balloons, etc., but it wasn’t long till the guests all started arriving.

Once they were on site, the focus shifted to getting food sorted and making sure the little ones were properly entertained. On the menu were fruits, cheese, bagels, scones, pancakes and other assorted little things. As you might guess, brunch was the key word here 🙂 Rebecca was helping out a lot by leading the kids through craft time, and some fun party games. Everyone was very eager to participate, and there were no little person breakdowns, which was nice. Once we were all fed and happy, there were more games to be played, and general kiddie fun. I retired to the kitchen to do some cleaning up of the cooking mess. After all, unlike most of the adults present, I had no small person that I had to watch. Helena was nice enough to pop in an visit me a couple times, which was pretty cute.

Once the kitchen was cleaned up, I headed outside to the park to join in the fun. The venue was the New Edinburgh Fieldhouse, which is right beside the Rideau River, and has a nice playground and lots of running around space. As such, all the kids were having a ball playing on all the structures. I tagged along with Helena for a while, playing on the teeter-totter with her, and the swings, as well as the climbing apparatus. She’s a great climber. Methinks we’ll have to get her to a climbing gym in the near future. Good excuse for me to get back into that as well!

After we were all sufficiently played out (well, at least the adults were), it was back into the fieldhouse for the birthday cake. I made sure everyone had their party hats on as we sang to Helena and she blew out the candles. Luckily, 4 candles is pretty easy to handle, so she pulled that off well 🙂 Fill up on cake, and it was on to presents. Everyone was very generous and she walked away with a big haul of great new things to play with, including dress-up clothes, dolls, books, music, movies, etc. Lucky girl. The party had been going on for about 3 hours, so things started winding down, with people making their way out. We obviously stayed till the end, and then finished dismantling all the decorations and packing up before leaving.

After the party, I squeezed in several errands, including getting the rest of the things I had stored over at my friend Carl’s house (desk, storage unit, wood, etc). I also headed over to Home Depot to pick up pegs for my peg board (can you believe Rona carried the pegboard but no pegs? I still can’t!). Then I jetted back to Andrea’s place to hang out with the family for a couple more hours. John and Jill had come up for the day from Picton, so it was nice to catch up with Patrick’s parents as well. They are still doing well, and keeping quite busy! By about 5pm, we were all feeling kind of pooped, so I decided to head home and get back to work on the house projects. However, not before Andrea gave me a nice housewarming gift consisting of a big Yucca plant, as well as a Home Depot gift card. Sweeet! Thanks sis and bro-in-law :-).

Well, that should be enough for my ‘short post’ right? Once again, Happy Birthday Helena! You’re a great kid and know how to make us all smile when you want to 😉 Next stop, Boston baby! Bye for now.

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