Brioni, 3yo, August 2009
The cake was simple (especially after the extravaganza of the day before!) but still exciting to the girls.

As her birthday approaches, we’ve been talking to Brioni about “making her three”. Because we don’t hold fast to a certain calendar day, we decided to give Brioni a couple of goals to achieve before she would “be” three years old.

One small goal was Brioni needed to strap herself into her car seat. She’s been physically able to do this for several months but usually opts out, complaining that it’s too hard. So we asked her to show she was ready to be three by consistently strapping herself in without help from us.

Other larger step was to give up nappies (“Three-year-olds don’t wear nappies!). About a month ago, Brioni decided she didn’t want to wear a nappy anymore. It hasn’t exactly been smooth sailing since then, and I get her up twice a night to put her on a potty kept conveniently close to her bed. However, it’s a step in the right direction, and I want to encourage it fully (despite losing sleep each night).

Once Brioni started to do these things consistently, we decided we would “make her three” once David came home from his latest road trip. When David was away, Brioni started despairing that he wouldn’t be back “soon” — especially as his trip was open-ended and we couldn’t count down the days.

Maria and Amelie’s arrival provided a wonderful distraction for the girls, and even when David arrived home, Brioni forgot her eagerness to turn three. But with Ree staying, it was a great excuse to make a cake and have a little party.

Balloons, August 2009
The girls' idea of a birthday involves balloons — lots of balloons. When I elicited David's help to blow some up, he brought up the air compressor and whizzed through about 80 balloons in about half an hour.

Brioni, 3yo, August 2009
We all enjoyed playing with the balloons and soon got used to the infrequent BANG as one popped.

Now that she’s three, the next step will be to slowly wean Brioni off sucking her thumb. And start writing her name. This will be exciting year, I’m sure!