and then you turned 4

I vividly remember the day you were born.  In Scotland.  They put us in the prenatal ward because the antenatal ward was empty.  There were pregnant women coming in and out of that ward to be tested for this and that.  They all ooed and awed over you.  You were tiny.

That night, all of the pregnant women were gone.  Just you and me in the corner of that room, behind our 80s patterned curtain.  It was quiet.  And I’m pretty sure that the nurses forgot about us back there in that corner.  But I didn’t care.  You went to sleep and so did I.  I enjoyed all of that time that I got to spend with you.  Of course, the pediatrician woke us up at 6:00.

We left for home after lunch.  It was very quiet.  Just you me and your dad left the hospital.  No American wheelchair to push me out, we walked to the car pushing you in your infant seat locked in the stroller.  It was sweet- just the three of us.

Your memmie and your sister were at home to greet you.  Alanna drew a picture for you and hung it on the front door.  When we brought you inside, she pointed at you and said, “Baby!”

I cannot believe that that was four years ago.

So here we are now in Boston, you’ve lived in 4 houses during your 4 years of life.

Our day started with opening a present after breakfast.  You had asked for your, “very own pet.”  You were specific in wanting a black dog.  A real one.  I promptly told you that you got a little brother instead of your very own pet.  You seemed satisfied with that, so I got you your very own mechanical pet that shakes it head and wags its tail.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t even handle a mechanical pet that made noise, so you ended up with the smaller version that only moves.


You were pretty happy with it.


You requested a yellow theme birthday party (your favorite color), so that’s what we went for.  We had a tea party and invited two of your friends.  It was wonderfully girlie.  And oh, you wore this really intense flower headband.  When you are 21 and are wondering what the heck is on your head, just know that I didn’t think it would be that big in comparison to your head size in the store.  I’m hoping that you won’t insist on wearing it everyday.  I guess though, what 4th birthday would be complete without a garish flower on your head?

We planned on making place mats for the tea party with your guests.


Memmie and I made this cake for you.  From scratch.  5 layers.  Each layer a different color.  Sit and ponder the awesomeness of this feat for a few moments…



You were brave to stand in the snow for a few minutes so I could get a picture of your birthday outfit.  You are in love with skirts at the moment.


“One, two….”




“I’m FOUR!”


At some point around here, I stopped you in the hall and hugged you.  Apparently it was too hard of a hug because you kind of groaned, wiggled your way out of my arms, and skipped down the hall.  You were so excited for this day.

Gotta love decor on a budget.


Your guests arrived and the place mats were a hit.  You girls had buttons, feathers, sequin ribbon, and scraps of paper to make your place mats.


And then it was time for tea.  You girls looked so cute with your grown up tea cups.  And no one spilled.  WIN.


Gotta love this ring.  Adorable.




Time for the song.




Your cake.  I will have to take a picture of a slice in natural light, because this lighting just doesn’t do it justice…


Present time!

You got an awesome set of beads,


a leotard for gymnastics (you’ve been telling everyone today that you get to start gymnastics and start making your bed now that you’re four.).


You also got a critter car,


a new baby from Memmie, some rockin’ tinkerbell gear, and some Disney princess polly pockets.


And then there was the birthday carnage.


I love you little Nora.  You’re so special to me.



  1. Kristie said

    Oh Hope that looks like so much fun! What a precious little thing she is! I am loving Karina at four and I think she is too. I hope this year is wonderful for her and you all!!

  2. Janna said

    What a precious little girl! We love her so much!!

  3. Jennifer Light said

    Happy Birthday, Nora! Wow! That looked like an awesome party!!

  4. G. said

    Yay! what great pictures, Hope. Ava had a great time and was so excited to tell her dad and brother about it! You did a great job on the cake, too. Nora is so sweet and you made a really special birthday for her! 🙂

  5. gthursday said

    Hope, Yay for Nora turning four!! The cake looked amazing. I bet it was delicious too. Based on all of your birthing experiences, do you prefer Scottish or American hospitals? When I read your blog post about having Nora in Scotland, I was surprised to see that the hospital let you sleep in till 6 am! I think my hospital stay sucked so much because the doctors and nurses would check up on me every 2-3 hours for three days so I couldn’t even sleep well. But maybe thats cause I had preeclampsia? Not sure… Anyways, beautiful post, beautiful pictures. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Caroline said

    I’m way behind on spotting this one, but it’s so schweeet!!! Four houses in four years…I know what that feels like!!

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