November 20, 2004

Happy Birthday Corie

Today was my niece Corie's 9th birthday. What a great (but exhausting) day. I actually started yesterday, collecting my mom's minivan to help out with the driving. When I walked in the house, Seana immediately started crying, thinking I was there to babysit again. But once she got the idea that Mom and Dad weren't leaving, she was as happy as a clam.

At noon we started gathering our gaggle of eight 9 year olds for our trip to Build-A-Bear. For those of you who have never been, Build-A-Bear is simply the funnest, most darling stuffed animal store you've ever seen. You start out by picking a stuffed animal which is basically a shell. You then take it to the stuffing station where they blow stuffing into it. Then you get a red satin heart, make a wish, and stick it in there. They sew it up, and off you go to the grooming station where you can brush the fur and blow air on it. Then they really hit your pocketbook--there are about a million clothes and accessories for your animal, each one cuter (and more expensive) than the last. Once your animal is fully outfitted you go to the computer where you fill out a birth certificate, then you get a little cardboard house and off you go.

I couldn't resist the stuffed beagle, whom I named "Barkley," and then it got worse. I also couldn't resist the mini stuffed beagle (named "Junior") and of course I had to outfit Barkley in this fashionable dog coat. I then had to beat a hasty retreat, lest I cave into the urge to get a Rudolph.

All the kids at the party got to make a stuffed animal. Two girls made matching Monkeys, one girl made a frog, and one girl made a horse (creatively named "Horse"). They did cute, special things for the Birthday Girl too. They made a miniature recording of everyone saying, "Happy Birthday Corie!" (although one girl, for apparently complex reasons understandable only to nine year olds, said, "Happy Birthday Bacon!") and stuck it in Corie's Rudolph's paw. When it came time to insert the heart, everyone inserted a heart in Corie's. She also got a CD of the music they play in the store (ironically not containing a recording of "Teddy Bear's Picnic").

We then headed back home for some running and playing on the play structure in the back yard. Seana loved playing with the big girls. Seana even made the "Shelby face," a scrunchy-face smile that makes her look exactly like me (what an attractive, adorable kid!). Corie opened her presents (we got her a Barnes and Noble gift card and a special day out with Aunt Shelby to spend it). After that it was time for the Lizzie McGuire themed cake and ice cream.

After most of the girls went home, I followed suit and immediately fell into bed for a 3 hour nap. It was exhausting but a lot of fun. Happy Birthday Corie!

(oh, and I did take pictures until my camera battery died in Build-A-Bear. I'll try to get those up as soon as possible)

Posted by Shelby at November 20, 2004 10:12 PM