Penelope’s 3rd Birthday Party

Penelope’s 3rd Birthday Party

So what does a grandmother get her only three year old granddaughter for her birthday?  Let me start by sharing that my darling granddaughter has three grandmothers and one great grandmother (you know, divorce, remarriage, in-laws, out-laws, etc.).  So of course, I want to be the grandmother with the most special gift.  You would think the fact that my granddaughter looks just like me would be enough.  But no, I want my gift to be the one that makes her squeal with joy on her special day, and while she won’t remember it ten years from now, I can only pray that perhaps, I will.

So the best place to start shopping for your granddaughter is with the assistance of your own daughter.  I called her on my cell phone and we chatted as I navigated my way to the toy aisle.  I discovered that I am way out of the loop when it comes to buying children’s toys.  With the precision of a submarine torpedo, my daughter directed me to the doll my granddaughter said she wanted.  I grabbed, I bagged it (yes, I paid for it first), and I drove it home.  Now all I had to do was patiently wait for the day of her party.  I was going to be the grandmother with the perfect birthday gift, or so I thought.

So party day arrives; I stroll confidently into my daughter and son-in-law’s house; proudly holding my big purple gift bag.  I place it ever so reverently on the gift table and go about the business of helping my daughter execute the perfect birthday party for a three year old.  It is so cathartic to watch your own child recreate their happiest childhood memories for their own children.  My daughter made the best decorations, got the cutest piñata, made the most creative party favors, cooked the most delicious meal, and of course baked the perfect birthday cake.  She was exhausted, just like I was so many years ago, but how do you put a price on throwing a successful party?  And successful it was.

So the most anticipated moment of the day arrives, it was time to open the mile high pile of gifts.  The gift table was strewn with dozens of beautifully wrapped presents.  And just like any three year old, Penelope enthusiastically dove into her pile of gifts.  Her mother told her who each gift was from, but Penny had all she could do to open just one gift at a time.  Did she love my gift, she did.  It was indeed the perfect doll for a little girl’s 3rd birthday.  Did she know her beloved doll was from me, for a brief moment in time, perhaps.  Will she remember next week, or the week after, probably not. So I guess my joy will have to come from remembering the delightful smile on her face when she opened my gift and the anticipation of watching her play with her Sophia doll each time we enjoy one another’s company.   Life is good.


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