The many 2nd birthdays of Lavinia Olympia

Spoiler alert: this is a very long post with A LOT of pictures and videos.

Since we spent Lavinia’s first birthday in lockdown, this year we wanted to make up for the magical birthday Lavinia didn’t have. As she turns 2, she still won’t remember anything about that, but we’re sure she fully understands her surroundings and what is going on around her, so we know she can definitely enjoy the moments as they happen.

So this year we planned 4 different birthdays, leveraging the fact that my family (parents and sister) were coming to visit separately. She had two birthday celebrations with my family, then one birthday at daycare, and one at home on her real birth-day, October 30th.

#1 – The auntie/uncle birthday

Sara and Michele spent some days at home; my sister managed to put together a full week off to spend with Lavinia. They get along so well, and Lavinia really enjoys her auntie and uncle’s company (we do too).

Sara and I baked a blueberry cake and chocolate muffins for the birthday party. Lavinia looked ecstatic when she found out that the living room and the food were all themed after her beloved Hey Duggee. She was on cloud nine: Duggee and the squirrels were everywhere, also on the yummy food!

#2 The grandparents birthday

My parents came to visit the day after Sara and Michele left. The last time they saw Lavinia in person, she was nearly two months old. Then the pandemic started, and you know how it went. Apart from the regular FaceTime calls, and videos and photos I share with them, they could say they didn’t know Lavinia.

My mother, especially, was afraid of being rejected by Lavinia, for whatever reasons – children are so unpredictable. My mother’s fears were unfounded, as Lavinia marched straight to my mother, handing her one of her favourite books. I will never forget the expression of extreme joy on my mother’s face.

My mother baked a yummy cake for the birthday party, and we opted for a Hey Duggee birthday celebration once again. Lavinia didn’t look like she was tired of the theme, or eating cake.

#3 Daycare birthday at Hailey’s

As the real birth-day approached, Bing bunny had a chance to be the star of the party as well. So the birthday party at Hailey’s daycare was Bing bunny themed. Lavinia appreciated it a lot, thanks also to the great company, the yummy (Bing) cake and the many balloons around.

I almost shed a tear when she brought home the birthday cards the oldest children crafted for her. 😭

#4 Real birth-day birthday at home

My sister Sara moved heaven and earth to be present also on Lavinia’s real birth-day. We invited some friends home (some couldn’t make it, unfortunately, which was a bummer), and cooked sweet and savoury food. Lavinia’s guardian, Lisa, baked a banana cake so yummy that I struggled to leave it on the table. Bing was, again, the star of the party, and we all laughed about how obsessed children can be towards certain characters. Aren’t we all at the end of the day?

Lavinia didn’t nap before the party, however, she eventually approached bedtime showing no fussiness at all. We love when she’s such the sweetest girl. She had fun and played with all of us, as we took turns to spend time with her – there were so many people!

I was so pleased by the fact that she never felt overwhelmed, and that’s also thanks to our amazing guests who knew how to handle a freshly-two-year-old in a crowded environment, also being the centre of the attention.

I hope Lavinia will check this blog post in the future and can re-build the memories of these past days. She was so happy and joyful.

Franz and I are so grateful to see she’s growing as a lovely, affectionate, graceful (and naughty!) person.

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