Saturday, July 9, 2011

Birthday Baby

As Kaleidoscope, my favorite store for buying educational toys and books, is far away in Capitola CA, I made Eloise two string dolls for her birthday.  Her other birthday present was an afternoon at a beach resort.


After we landed the dinghy on the beach at Ika Lahi Resort a few days before the birthday, I saw into the lodge through multiple open French double doors.  I saw a few large wooden sculptures, one or two strategically placed couches, and a floor that looked easy to clean.  The double doors opened out onto a wooden deck only a few feet above the sand beach, and a green lawn to the side.  "This looks like a perfect place to have Eloise's birthday party," I said.  And indeed it was.  It had everything we needed for a successful party…lots of places for Eloise to climb and crawl and stand, no other restaurant goers to irritate, lots of fish items on the menu, shade, breeze, animals to chase, and a birthday cake with a #1 candle on it.  . 

Other than Caroline and Steve, the owners, we were the only people at the resort.  Nevertheless, we were treated with warm hospitality and served with thoughtfulness.  We ate smoked marlin pate and homemade sesame crackers; mahi mahi fritters with papaya mango chutney, Thai Beef salad and three different kinds of dessert…make that 4! Caroline brought out a heart-shaped birthday cake decorated with pink hibiscus flowers for Eloise after we had eaten the other three desserts (passion fruit custard was my favorite).  The afternoon was relaxing since I didn't have to cook or coordinate anything.  We ate a course, took pictures of Eloise and walked her around with our fingers, ate some more, took more pictures of Eloise, watched her, chased her, ate some more, then sat around talking to Steve and Caroline while Eloise played with a large bucket of clothespins Caroline got out for her.  Then it was past bed time for our little one-year-old so we scooted home in the dinghy. 


One other highlight is that Eloise took her first unaided steps.  We knew it would be soon but Brian and I both missed seeing them L  Luckily Caroline saw and announced it.  Eloise had been standing behind my chair and then toddled 3 steps toward something on the ground before going to a crawl.  Today, she took two more unaided steps and we got to see them. 


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