The littlest M turned three on Sunday. For her big day, I decided to celebrate in style. I invited two of my dear friends and their little girls (6 months and 11 months younger than M) and my Mom for a girls’ day out. We started our day at Build a Bear to make some new friends. This was my first Build a Bear experience and I can honestly say that I am hooked, but that is a whole other post for a different day.
The girls took their time picking their new friends, stood in line to add stuffing and a small satin heart to a dog, bunny and penguin; took extra care to give each animal a bath; picked out nifty outfits (including a get up that resembled something for the Harding/Kerrigan ice skating era); selected names and finally watched as each were safely put in cardboard houses for the trip home.
The celebration continued with the girls donning matching purple tutus and M sporting wings for birthday girl designation. The three held hands as we juggled the cardboard houses and headed to lunch. As these three little girls wandered their way from the middle of the mall to the farthest anchor store they left a trail of joy to all that they passed. Even those with the sourest facial expression couldn’t help but smile as the girls moved along chatting to each other and responding to our encouragement to move along, look ahead, pay attention and watch out for walls, planters, people and each other. We also need encouragement as we were trying to capture the moment walking backward with our smart phones in one hand and the luggage of motherhood in the other.
We finally arrived to what many women consider the best place on Earth – Nordstrom. I have spent a fair share of time at Nordstrom so it only seemed appropriate to dine at the Nordstrom Cafe for the first big girls’ day out. The girls ordered awesome kid lunches and the moms all ordered salads. Three table were put together to accommodate our party and the girls piled into one side of the booth, while we sat across trying to manage the lunch process. We ended lunch with a wonderful berry shortcake and Nordstrom mint chocolates. By that time, we had been out for hours the girls were reaching the end of their ropes. We said our good byes and headed home for much-needed naps.
My Mom and I took a few minutes to grab a cup of coffee and talk to Maeve about her day. We asked what she liked best (the purple tutu), did she have fun (yes), was she ready to head home (no, she wanted to have another play date with the girls). My Mom was beaming about the entire day, she couldn’t stop talking about the parade through the mall, the expressions of the passerbys and how much little M reminded her of me when I was a child. I too enjoyed the day, but what I was most enjoyed was the realization that I was lucky enough to share this day with my two good friends and their girls.
I couldn’t stop thinking about our almost 13 years of friendship. Of boyfriends come and gone. Multiple moves from rental properties to first homes. So much laughter and of course, tears. Marriages and now, children. I have probably put in a good year of my life shopping at Nordstrom, many of the trips were insignificant errands, but on this day some of the special trips came flooding back into my mind. Ashley shopped with me to pick an outfit for my first date with my husband. I was there a day after my son’s due date so Ashley could pick up a new pair of jeans for her bachelorette party that I was way to pregnant to attend. I bought my dress for Sarah’s wedding, something a bit forgiving to hide a growing bump that I hadn’t yet told many about.
I am so grateful for these wonderful ladies and am so happy to be navigating the road of motherhood with them. I was also reminded about how much I miss my other great friends that live throughout country. We are not close enough to share the day in and day outs of life, but that I know are only a quick phone call away.
Thanks Ash and SJ for celebrating little M’s big day and for reminding me how lucky I am to be friends with you.