Monday, January 23, 2012

Sibling rivalry is an excellent motivator

Yesterday, Sabrina had her 7th birthday party at a local cooking school. Kids made pizza, smoothies and ice-cream sundaes. And then, they taught them how to cook beef tenderloin for their parents! OK, I wish.

Sabrina's been counting down to the party for three months on a calendar in her room, and she was pretty out of her head with excitement.

Max kept insisting it was his birthday, and that he wanted a Cars 2 ice-cream cake.

"No, Max, today is Sabrina's birthday," I'd tell him.

"No! Ine!" ["Mine!"] he'd say.

"Max, its Sabrina's birthday," I'd say. "When it's your birthday you can have a Cars 2 party again!"


Repeat, repeat, repeat.

But he behaved admirably at the party.

First the kids colored

Then they pounded out dough, spread on sauce and sprinkled on cheese

Writing "Cars 2" in pizza sauce isn't that easy

My sis and my niece

Making strawberry-banana smoothies

And then, it was time to sing "Happy Birthday." After Max's meltdown at his party when everyone sang it to him, we were prepared. My brother-in-law took Max out of the room before we turned off the lights, and we all sang to Sabrina.

"I'm not smiling any more for you!" Birthday Girl told me, charmingly.

My kids have some serious birthday party issues.

Anyway, the kids all got ice-cream and whatever toppings they want, including gummy worms, which always gross me out because they remind me of drinking tequila in college.

Max requested his traditional three bowls of chocolate ice-cream.

Dave helped Max out as I made sure everyone got their chocolate or vanilla or both and tried to coax another smile for the camera out of Birthday Girl.

All of a sudden, I looked over to the corner where Max and Dave were seated. Max had a marshmallow on top of his ice-cream with a lit candle in it. He saw me and motioned toward the ceiling lights. I went over to him.

"You want to turn off the lights?" I asked, incredulously.

"Eeeyah!" said Max.

I could see where this was headed.

"You want us to sing 'Happy Birthday?!'" I asked, even more incredulously.

"EEEYAH!" said Max.

I didn't want to make a big deal out of this—it was Sabrina's party, after all. So I asked a staffer to just dim the lights. And then Dave and I sang "Happy Birthday" to Max. Actually, we sang "Happy Birthday to Cars 2," which is the name Max prefers to go by these days.

I really need to think of how I can better put this sibling rivalry thing to good use.


  1. how great! happy birthday to sabrina! (and to cars 2!)

  2. Happy Birthday Sabrina! I love the photos, Ellen; thanks for sharing!

    (Your daughter is the only other Sabrina I know, so wishing her a happy birthday makes me feel like I'm wishing myself a happy birthday LOL!)

  3. The party was amazing and Sabrina loved it and so did Max. I don't think she even really noticed too much that Max wanted you to sing to him (although I am pretty sure that he knew that it was not his party).

    Happy Birthday to Sabrina!!

  4. First of Many-2 happy birthday sabrina..The party was amazing. I love the photos, Ellen; thanks for sharing!

  5. What a cool party idea - no wonder Sabrina was so excited. She looks like she had a wonderful party.

    We have an issue with Cameron getting envious of his sisters birthdays and he always wants the presents.

    Hopefully Max will really enjoy his birthday when it arrives, especially since he's had a practice run.

  6. You are beautiful parents. Really, truly beautiful.

  7. happy birthday cars 2 :) that made me smile and of course happy 7th birthday sabrina trying to see if i remember turning 7 and i can't say i really do :(


Thanks for sharing!

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