It’s crazy to think that 3 years have already passed since my niece was born, but it’s true when they say that time really does fly. From a tiny baby who could barely wrap her little fingers around your own, to a flourishing, happy little girl who knows exactly what she wants, she’s truly become one of the bravest and smartest people I know and I couldn’t be more proud.
I think that each year we try to make each of her birthday celebration better than the last. For her first birthday we had a little family gathering at home. For her second we spent a beautiful day at this cute lake/beach location swimming and having fun. And for her third, we thought that spending some time at a house by the lake would be amazing and Arrowhead Lake in the Poconos seemed like the perfect place. Not only are these occasions used to celebrate her getting older, but being that we all don’t get to see one another as often as we’d like, we also take them as an opportunity to have a mini reunion.
The weekend was full of so many fun and memorable moments like:
Trips around the glassy lake in a little rowboat (that was way more difficult to navigate than you’d think!) 🚣
Loud, colorful fireworks that she wasn’t even afraid to be near! 🎆 🎇
Presents (of course)! 🎁
A little bit of fishing 🎣
A Bob Marley dance party, because what’s better than jamming to his music as the sun sets on the lake? 💃
A lot more visits to the local Wal-Mart than I’d care to count because we either forgot paper towels or butter or salt or some necessity and had to run out and get it (next time we’ll be pros, for sure). 🚙
And of course the food! Lots and lots of food! Chicken with homemade barbeque sauce, grilled ribs, hamburgers, hot dogs, rice and peas, and this massive, 5-layer blue ombre cake that I baked especially for the birthday girl. By the end I doubt anyone could fit anything else into their stomachs. 🍴
On one quiet evening, we sat down around the fire and made some good ol’ fashioned s’mores. I decided to try making the graham crackers myself using this recipe by Alton Brown, and while good in their own way, I think sometimes using already made items isn’t always such a bad thing. I also made the marshmallows using a recipe I featured here once before that are always a hit and so easy to make. It really was so peaceful to sit by the open fire and listen to it crackle as we roasted marshmallows and looked out onto the beautiful lake 🔥
I think that despite it being our first time doing this, was had a pretty awesome time, and it is a tradition that I hope to continue for years to come so that she’ll be able to create enough memories to last a lifetime, which I find so important.
So with all of the cake and lake and presents and music and boating and family, I’d say that she was a pretty happy 3 year old, wouldn’t you?