Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Vienne's 4th and Last Birthday

Next Wednesday, exactly one week from today, our Vienne would be turning 5 years old.  We have something special planned for her day, May Day, and I will share that with all of you soon.

Exactly 1 year ago, I was planning Vienne's 4th Birthday party.  Little did I know that it would be her last.  It makes me well up with tears trying to imagine what I would've felt or thought if someone had told me, last year, that that would be the last time I would throw my sweet Vienne a birthday party.  Can you even imagine?  No.  You should not.
I said in my last post that her 3rd birthday party was my favorite, but as I pour through the photos from this birthday, I would have to say that it is my favorite too...on a different level.  It is the most fresh and recent in my memory.  It is sweet because it included her baby sister.  I was a very proud mama of two very beautiful little girls.  It was one of the happiest times in my life, for sure.  I look at these photos and my heart bursts in awe over her beauty.  My goodness, she was certainly a most special child.
Originally, for Vienne's 4th birthday I wanted to throw her a "Knights and Princesses" costume party so that she could invite all of her friends - boys and girls.  I started coming up with the coolest ideas like:  sword fighting a piñata dragon; pin the flame on the dragon's mouth; a dragon egg hunt; cupcakes with "flames" as toppers...etc.  I had big plans!  But, then reality set in and I realized that I had a newborn on my hands and really, this incredible idea was just a bit over the top for this new mama of two!  So, I set the idea aside in hopes to do it for her 5th.  :(  Instead, I asked Vienne if she would like a Tea Party with her girlfriends.  I knew that I could keep the invite list small with just girls and then plan small play dates with her little boy friends.  The Tea Party idea was a hit with her!  So, I went with that and was amazingly able to pull off quite the little tea party without much stress.  I look back over these pictures and I have to say that I am quite proud of myself for accomplishing this with a 3 months old!  It was so much fun!

Vienne actually only had just ONE birthday request, last year.  I don't think she ever really got the idea of actually asking for presents...I think that was a concept that we kept on the down low.  We tried to keep the "I want I want" mentality to a minimum.  So, when we asked Vienne if she had any birthday wishes or desires, she adamently and repeatedly requested a "green cake with purple polka dots!".  That was it.  Over and over again, that's all that she requested for the entire month leading up to her day.  When I asked for details on the flavor, she requested chocolate (of course!) with strawberry filling.  Done!  You can be darn sure that I spent much time perfecting this exact cake for her!  I loved, and still do love, that her request was not for toys or things.  It further shows what kind of spirit she was.  Just one little example.  Sure, when we were in stores and she saw something she desired, she would ask for it...but when we were home, or in daily life, she was never in want.  She was never discontent with what she had.  She never knew the concept of "wanting more" and I love that.  I am proud of that.

On this birthday, we also held a family birthday dinner party on the weekend so that we could all celebrate her, as a family.  This was held at my Mom and Stepdad's house.

Here are the photos for both parties ~

(Family birthday dinner at Grammy and Grandpa's.  I LOVE how she is posing with her left hand on her back hip.  This was a new thing she was doing in pics and it cracked me up.)

(birthday dinner request?  Noodles of course!! {pronounced:  "nuddles"})

(gorgeous joy)

("yay!! golf balls!"  not really.  It's just the box...but she sure looks excited over it!)

(going against my request, Grammy went ahead and bought Vienne her first Barbie dolls.  Oh Grammy!)

(I look angry...but, no...just peaceful, holding my new niece, Miriam)

(a Lightning McQueen wagon!)

(Grammy, holding baby Ivy, trying to figure something out with Vienne...not sure what that is)

(cupcake time!)


("I'm 1 -2 -3 -4!"

May 1, 2012 - The Tea Party!

(the morning of her birthday...this was what was waiting for her when she woke!  She is standing in awe!)

(the little tea party table all set and ready.  Borrowed an extra table and chairs, covered them both with a lace table cloth, tied the chairs with purple ribbons, hung a balloon "chandelier" over the table, and used my mom's antique porcelain child's tea set!  What a special honor!)

(Birthday girl in her Lightning McQueen robe, a bday crown, clip on earrings, and her new rain boots, posing for a birthday morning picture!  She is SO EXCITED!  There's that hand on the hip.)

(I also invited the moms, my girlfriends, to come along and enjoy a tea party as well.  This is the grown up table all set and ready.  I used to collect antique tea cups, so it was fun to pull them out and use them for this special occasion.

(the little girls' tea table all set with food and tea!)

(food is set out and ready!)

(And, then there's "The Cake".  Ok.  So, I'm not a baker.  This was actually the first cake I have ever made and decorated!  Eileen came over with her cake decorating gear and helped me out the night before.  I used chlorophyl as dye for the green icing...and I tried blueberries and beets for the purple..but the purple didn't turn out, so I used food coloring.  I do wish that I had just made the cake round so that it would have fit better on the stand, but V loved the heart shape.  It turned out pretty cute no matter what, though!)

(Birthday Girl in her pretty party dress that she picked out all on her own.  I was so shocked that she would pick out hot pink tulle!  I love how she could surprise me like that.  The headband looks like it has a red flower, but it really is hot pink and did match.  I curled her hair and painted her nails bright green!  Doesn't she look darling??)

(beautiful girl.  Always.)

(we started the tea party off with some jewelry-making.  I bought a ton of beads and jewelry-making sets and let the girls make whatever they wished to go with their outfits.  I had thought this would be easier than making fancy hats...but I would not recommend giving bowls of tiny beads to preschoolers!  haha!  Vienne and Ella just ended up making "bead soup" in their up on the entire concept altogether.  Great idea... but too ambitious.  But they still had fun.)

(Lauren and her two beautiful girls, making necklaces.)

(Ella and Vienne looking so serious...)

(Aunt Katy holding Brooke's daughter, Lily, and cheering us on.)

(Natalie says:  "these beads are so small!")

(my dear friend, Brooke, and her daughter, Natalie)

(bead soup is so much more fun)

(beautiful Ella)

(my dear friend Eileen, her daughter Ella, and Vienne)

(Lilly and Lauren)

(Ella's little sister, Faith)


(after the jewelry making, we moved to the actual tea party.  Here I am giving a mini lesson on "Tea Party Etiquette".  "Hold your pinky out", "Wipe the corners of your mouth with your napkin, then lay it on your lap", "Say please and thank you and excuse me", "talk about the glorious weather"...etc.  It was fun to get silly with them.  They were such good little listeners!)

(some of the spread - two different crustless sandwiches, cut into hearts or butterflies, fresh fruit, and pretzels with peanut butter/honey/cinnamon/yogurt dip)

(Vienne patiently waiting to dig in.  She also chose the tea flavors to be served which were a chocolate tea and a berry tea.)

( precious is this?!)

(perfectly well-behaved little tea party girls.  Darling.)

(little conversations.  too cute.)

(my Girl lookin' a little sly...oh, that unmistakeable profile of hers!)

(Ella and Jane)

(the moms...and some of my very good friends.)

(Cake time!!  Oh man, whatever she is doing with her face is just too too funny!  Is she growling??  Scratching?  hahah...whatever it was, I know it was excitement.  I was sooooo thrilled to finally show her the cake!!)

(singin' the song)

(make a wish, my darling)

(even though my life is a nightmare, I have to believe that all of her wishes have come true, for there is no better place to be than in Heaven.  As much as I hate to admit that.)

(eat cake)

(I have to say:  It was delish!)

(Natalie eats cake.)

(Ella eats cake.)

(Jane eats cake.)

(And, now time for gifties)

(sitting like such a lady!  haha)

(to finish the party, we did a craft for the party favors - we painted little pots and I put purple pansies in each finished pot.  Flowers for May Day.)

And, to conclude her 4th Birthday...

(I just have to include these silly photos.  These pics concluded our night.  Vienne requested pizza for her bday dinner and since I was spent after the party, we ordered from Pizzicato.  On this night of her 4th birthday, Vienne decided that she could eat her dinner with her toes!  And, since she was so talented at it...well we just had to let her! hahah)


(oh my gosh, this is hilarious.  It was the first and last time we ever saw her do this.  What a silly fun girl.)

And, these are the last birthday memories I have of my Girl.  I ache over the fact that I cannot continue to show off more and more...of her 5th, and 6th, 7th, 8th....and on and on.  I just recently remembered that after Vienne turned 4, she repeatedly would tell me that she wanted to stay 4 forever...that she didn't want to go to 5.  
Well, my Darling Precious Girl, it seems that your wish has come true.  Perhaps, deep down, you just knew.
I love you more than you know, my Vienne.  I will love you always and miss you every single day until I can be with you again.
Happy Birthday, my Love.


  1. My heart is so heavy for you. I can't keep back the tears seeing these pictures. It was such a beautifully done party. What a special day for me and the girls. Lilly made a necklace and bracelet, which are now hung in a very special spot. I treasure this day always.
    Lots of love, Lauren

    1. I am so glad that you girls could be part of that day. Your girls were great friends to Vienne and it always meant so much.
      Love you.

  2. The last wish just makes me cry! I feel like our children know so much more than we could even imagine, they are still so fresh from the presence of The Lord. What a darling angel you had and will have again. You don't know me, but you inspire me and I pray for your sweet mommy heart and peace. I hope your celebration next week is so blessed by the spirit of God and so much peace.

    1. Thank you so much for such a sweet comment. And, thank you for your prayers...they are constantly needed.

  3. oh my heart and eyes...sob..sob..sob. Jenny, you're so amazing. Thank you for keeping her in our hearts with this blog.

    1. :( I know. Thank you for such sweet emotion and encouragement.

  4. My sweet girl. This is beautiful. So many memories that bring smiles and tears. This was a day amongst all days. Vienne lacked for nothing. She got to experience so much joy in her short 4 years - you and Mark saw to it. And you will continue to do so for sweet Ivy. Vienne would take such joy in "throwing out a party" for Ivy!
    I love you.
    ~ Your Mama

    1. I am glad to agree that you are right, she certainly lacked nothing. Not spoiled at all...just spoiled with love.

  5. My heart is bursting. Her "last wish" is so moving and profound. Kids are so intuitive, it makes me wonder also if deep down she really knew.
    I so wish you could continue sharing birthday memories with us. By the grace of God though, you have Ivy to put your energy into making her birthday's just as extravagent!
    Love to you all,

  6. I have typed and deleted, typed and deleted. Beautiful post Jenny. 4 is such a special year. It has been my favorite so far with Braeden. Maybe she just knew, breaks my heart hun. Take care this week and I am continually praying for your strength.

    1. Oh Robyn, your sensitive heart is so sweet to me. Thank you for pushing "publish" this time. You words are so sweet to me.

  7. She was such a lucky little girl to be so loved by her parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins and friends. I believe her four years on this Earth couldn't have been spent any better - you did a marvelous job taking care of God's angel. And He is now taking good care of her for you. I'll be praying for each of you as Vienne's birthday approaches - May God give you strength to celebrate and mourn simultaneously. - Diane -

    1. Diane ~

      Thank you for such encouragement and prayers. I certainly need both.

  8. Amen to Diane's well said. Thanks for sharing such an adorable sweet 'girly' party you had for Vienne. You have so many talents,
    one of which is your ability to make everything so very special. I continue to think of you and your family. Peace and blessings to you all. Terry

    1. I love that my girl could be "girly" and "tom-boy" at the same time. ;)

      Thank you for your compliments and well wishes. It means so much to read all of this support.

  9. Dear One,

    I am a stranger to you. I don't even know how I happened on you and heartbreaking story. Vienne is stunning. It would be easy to go on about her physical beauty. She is an extraordinarily beautiful child. Truly ethereal and breathtaking. But her physical beauty is a reflection of so much more.

    Her beauty reveals a life that is full of love. A little girl who only knew happiness, love, truth, caring and joy. She never knew any of life's heartaches that age us or dull the childlike sparkle in our eyes or brilliance of our smiles. She never knew, that as humans, we are fallible and that this fallibility steals the beauty within. She never knew that we can be cruel and hurtful to one another or that competition and a desire to "keep up" renders us hollow, empty. All of these truths that we live with steal the light from within and with it our innocence and beauty.

    Of course you Vienne is physically a beautiful child. But she shines and radiates a beauty from within. A beauty provided her by loving parents who created a world where she was free to grow and thrive. I am so sorry that was all taken so soon. I am so sorry for the ache that will seemingly never go away. I am so sorry.

    Happy 5th birthday beautiful Vienne. May your lovely and too short life teach us all that childlike beauty is worth fighting for. And in your memory may we be kinder to one another.

    I am praying for you and your family!

    1. Wow, thank you so much for taking the time to read through and share such thoughtful words with me. Every sweet comment is an outreach of love and support to me that I so desperately need.
      I am encouraged to be reminded that Vienne's inner and outer beauty will always remain and that she will never be tarnished by the ugliness of this world. I need to remind myself of this more often. So often I am selfish and just want to be with her.

      Thank you for your prayers.

  10. Beautifully said, Aunty Mip. Vienne inspires me more and more, to love like she did...which is like Christ in that, she inspires me to turn my face back toward Jesus and invite Him into my suffering & pain at her loss. I can't do this alone...
    Vienne's Grammy

  11. Oh, I look back on this tea party with such love in my heart. It was such a special time. Natalie won't ever forget it. She still talks about it sometimes. Vienne was so radiant that day. Love you friend.

  12. Vienne's fourth birthday was just perfect. I don't think a day could be better. How special, Jenny and Mark! Thank you for sharing!!! :) Molly