Monday, December 17, 2012

It's Great to be Eight

Yesterday our Brooklyn McCall turned eight years old. There's something bitter-sweet about watching your oldest grow up. Every time the Christmas season approaches, I remember the tiny babe who slept under our tree in a stocking. She was beautiful then, but I am even more fascinated by the creative, intelligent, inquisitive young woman who graces our home today.

In honor of Brooklyn's birthday, we went to a Saturday matinee performance of The Nutcracker. Brooklyn's piano studio has focused on learning Tschaikovsky's Nutcracker suite over the past several months, so it seemed an appropriate reward for all of her hard work. (By the way, many thanks to NomiAnn and Papa Kay for the gorgeous Christmas dresses!)
We even splurged and attended Clara's Celebration following the show. Here are the girls playing London Bridge with some of the dancers.
We met most of the cast...
...and rested well knowing that the Mouse King was most certainly defeated.
Our princesses even got to try on their own tiaras in the costume studio.
Of course, their favorite part of the celebration was naturally decorating sugar cookies. Yum!
The next day (Brooklyn's actual birthday) found us trekking along Kolob Reservoir Road toward Cave Valley to have dinner with one of Jason's colleagues. We initially weren't sure if we'd be able to make the trip because of a recent storm. Once we safely made it to our destination, Brooklyn discovered the snow made a fantastic birthday backdrop.
Jason and Eli with Rob. What a spectacular place to call home!
Rob's wife, Nina, introduces us to the neighbor's friendly horse.
Jason and Eli enjoyed the mares...
...but not nearly as much as our animal lover, Talia. Of course, the horses seemed particularly interested in her as well. I wonder if she had some chocolate chip cookie remnants on her face.
Some more photos, just for our family record. Winter scenes are rare for us in St. George.

Our eventual destination was a small cave. While the entrance was plenty wide farther up... get in you actually had to shimmy through this super-narrow slit.
Everyone made it in but me. For once, I exercised some better judgment and decided that baby might appreciate it if I sat this adventure out.
Still, it was an absolutely lovely afternoon, made perfect by the birthday girl's goofy smile.
Of course, no birthday is complete without a cake and candles. Jason made a delicious angel food cake, and Brooklyn told us that her wish had already come true.
Ours too.
Happy Birthday, Buttermilk.


Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Brooklyn McCall "Buttermilk" Wheeler!! You are a fine example of a youngster who knows what "It's great to be 8" really means. I'm so pleased that your family continues to experience so many enriching adventures--even hikes in the snow. We live in such a beautiful world, and it is made all the more so by you and your loving family. Keep smiling!

The Favorite said...

What a fun birthday and super fun Nutcracker. Those dresses were beautiful! It's great to see some snow in your otherwise warm and red-rock everyday pictures.
Merry Christmas!

Tanja said...

Happy Birthday Dear BMW :) I also remember the picture with the sock 8 years ago. Thank you for sharing these pictures. Hope you will have Fröhliche Weihnachten und ein glückliches Neues Jahr!

Brittney Richards said...

I can't believe she is 8 years old. That means she is getting baptized soon. I remember when she was 2, was it really that long ago?? Happy Birthday Brooklyn, you really are a sweet girl and an excellent big sister.