We celebrated our eldest son's birthday the other day without a birthday party. We simply granted some of his wishes. Thus, I call it T as in Timothy Day! ;)
During the weekend before his birthday, we granted his wish to have his hair cut at Robots and Dolls salon for kids. I was happy to find out that one of his privileges as a member of the salon's kiddie club is to have a free haircut on his birthday month.
We also had his bike vulcanized as requested by our birthday boy. It has been months since he last used his bike because we could not find someone who can fix it. Thankfully, we found a vulcanizing shop nearby and we had it fixed on the week of his birthday. He rode his bike every morning in the past days leading to his birthday.
On the night before his birthday, I had the lights on our Christmas tree installed because he wanted the tree to be lighted that night.
On the day of his birthday, we had pancakes cooked for breakfast. I poured chocolate syrup on his pancakes to form the letters G (for Gian) and T (for Timothy).
Then, we placed his birthday gift under the Christmas tree. We bought a police tool set for him because that's also his wish. He opened his gift after eating his breakfast.
After that, he played with his new toy by pretending to be a police officer.
By midmorning, we got ready to leave the house for our lunch. We had lunch at one of his favorite restaurants. It was also his wish to eat in this restaurant -- Bon Chon.
On our way to Bon Chon, we talked about St. Timothy so our son would get to know more his namesake. I told him that he was named after St. Timothy, who assisted St. Paul in his ministry. I told him that St. Timothy was still young when he helped St. Paul. Thus, I encouraged him to serve in whatever way he can in the church even while he is young. I reminded him of our friend, Brother JC, who is a young preacher at The Feast and who assists our main preacher Brother Bo Sanchez in his ministry. I used them as examples and I likened Brother Bo to St. Paul and Brother JC to St. Timothy. He understood what I meant and he named another preacher (Brother Adrian) who helps Brother Bo in reaching more people. I also told him that Timothy is one of the books in the Bible.
We met up with my mom who joined us for lunch at Bon Chon. We ordered his usual favorite food -- Bon Chon chicken, rice and chap chae.
It was also his wish to have a globe-designed cake. So instead of my initial plan to simply buy a regular dedication or birthday cake from cake stores, I had a baker customize a cake for him. The baker brought the cake at Bon Chon while we were having lunch. We sang him the birthday song after lunch but he was not able to blow his candles yet because we didn't have matches or a lighter. So we brought the cake with us to the play center where we headed next.
I previously bought vouchers from Active Fun in preparation for his birthday since I know that he loves playing there. I bought two extra vouchers so we can invite other kids to be his playmates aside from his younger brother. Good thing, the sons of one of our family friend were available that afternoon to join in the fun. The boys had a great time playing as usual. So two more wishes granted: to play at Active Fun and to have playmates/friends to join him there.
Another wish granted was that his Dad was able to spend time with him on his birthday. My husband filed for a leave from his work. He also spent time to play with our sons at the play center before our friend's sons arrived. Unfortunately, he hit his knee on the slide so he had to go out and ask our helper to accompany the boys afterwards.
We stayed at Active Fun until around 5:30 PM then we went home so we can go to Mass at 7 PM. We passed by the parish office actually before going to Bon Chon. I had a Mass offered in thanksgiving for my son's birthday. We also requested for our Parish Priest to come over to our house to join us for dinner and to pray the rosary with us. We were very happy to get confirmation from the parish office staff that our Parish Priest could come.
We got back home around 6:30 PM. My son opened the gift he got from my mom first. My mom gave him a new Cars plate set. That's also one of his wishes.
Then, we went to church to celebrate Mass.
After the Mass, we prayed the rosary together as a family with our guests and had a brief reflection and sharing time with our Parish Priest, Fr. Francis, and other members of our parish.
We had dinner after that. I taught one of our helpers to cook spaghetti and fried chicken. I simply marinated the chicken for her and instructed her to cook them just before the Mass.
We had a simple celebration for our eldest son's birthday but we know that he was very happy because we fulfilled many of his wishes. For other ideas on how to celebrate your child's birthday without a birthday party, you may read one of my previous posts in this blog.