/> a mother's heart » Blog Archive » i have an 8 year-old

Where did the time go? Honestly – I’m pretty sure Brendan was just a toddler, hugging my knees and giving me Eskimo-kisses everywhere except my nose.

When did he get so tall? When did he get to be so … 8?

Last year was The Year of the Jedi – everything was Star Wars and Star-Wars relevant.  We survived that year and although he’s still a snuggly-kid who loves to cuddle his parents, he’s growing, changing, and maturing.  Some of the growth is delightful and makes our hearts smile.  He was giving a special award at Awana for helping a fellow “clubber” (what they call kids in Awana) find a verse in the Bible – and explaining how to read chapter & verse.  Other growth, well… our parenting job isn’t done.  We’re trying to teach him to be independent and to stand up for the right things, but sometimes that seems to come with a willingness to blame others for his mistakes.  But all in all, he’s a relatively easy kid to parent and a joy to be around.dsc_0031nefa

This year was The Year of the Pirrrrrrrrate, all based on the piñata Mark was given at work. [Yes, it’s weird.  I live with the fact that his co-workers have weird things in their cubicles and give weird things away.  And this latest bequest was received when the office had to pack up & move across the road (which brings up jokes about “why did the office cross the road?” except that there are no good answers to those jokes).]  Someone didn’t want to move it – no information about why it was in a cube to begin with – and when he brought it home, Brendan was immediately in love.  And so the Pirate Theme was plotted.

The cake was fun to make – once my kid decided on which cake he wanted.  Strangely enough, if you Google “pirate cakes,” you’ll come up with pages and pages of completed cakes.  And since I’m not above wanting a decent-page-rank myself,dsc_0004 this post will be tagged with exactly that as well.  There were designs for pirate ships (some of which looked suspiciously like a baby-buggy without wheels) to pirate-heads to pirate hats with Jolly Rogers on them.  The design he chose (with a little nudging from us) was the Deserted Island, which makes me think it might more properly be named the Desserted Island, seeing as it’s a cake and all.  😉

It was a 9×13 cake and one 9″ round, 2 full batches of buttercream frosting, hand-dyed sugars (couldn’t find the right colours at the grocery store), and a plethora of both LEGO and Playmobil pirate characters.  All in all, it was a hit – and for a change, I was delighted with it.  I’m usually somewhat dissatisfied with what I do; it’s the darned perfectionist in me.  But this time, I was quite happy.dsc_0029nefa

I also went to five different stores looking for “trick candles” – the ones that re-light.  I knew I had one shot at this gag, and Brendan is the right age to appreciate and enjoy it.  It was completely worth the hunt and the $.99 – he was shocked, surprised, and loved every minute of it.  I’m embedding the video below the post, too.  :)

His grandparents struggle with what to give him for his birthday every year because it’s within a month of Christmas (as though I had the power to make his birthdate anything other than what it was?!).  This year, both sets of grands went in together and bought him a Nintendo DS – something he’s dsc_0035nefabeen wanting for months now.  And yes, I caved.  I have maintained a video-game-free home for 8 years and I finally caved.  On the up-side, it’s a great motivator for him – if he doesn’t finish his schoolwork on time and doesn’t do his chores, there’s no media time, including the DS.  And I will admit that playing LEGO Star Wars while I wait for dinner to finish simmering is kind of fun.  😉

We had fun celebrating the gift of Brendan this year – and although we (once again, 3 years running) managed to forget one of his gifts and gave it to him the next day, Mark & I fell in to bed that night and congratulated each other on pulling another one off.  :)

Oh, and if you’re interested in the gallery of photos I took (my first time of shooting RAW), if you click on the Flickr badge to the right, you can see all of them.

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