Monday, March 10, 2014

Happy 6th Birthday, Addie Jane!

 Cousins most definitely make the greatest friends. I can't believe Addie Jane and Mary Ella are turning 6 this year! Where does the time go? Feels like yesterday I was writing this post about newborn Addie, and now here we are about to send her and Mary Ella to 1st grade in the fall. *tears*
We were fortunate enough to get to spend a fun weekend in Atlanta celebrating Addie Jane's 6th birthday. Her mama (my 1st cousin Ashley) booked us a hotel room next to the North Point Mall in Alpharetta, GA, and we had such a fun time getting away together.
Ashley and Addie Jane drove down to Birmingham on Friday morning. Mary Ella was at school until noon so we picked her up and headed out of town! First we let Addie Jane open her gifts in the car - a rain coat and boots for her new American Girl doll, Josefina, as well as a travel carrying case that will hold her doll and a few outfits. All of the girls were so excited.

(P.S. This picture below captures Emma Kate's sneaky personality so well. Stinker.)

Dolls and girls, ready to go!

We arrived just in time for our 5:30pm reservation at the American Girl Bistro in the North Point Mall. We decided since we'd eaten a late lunch that we'd just eat some birthday desserts in the bistro and then get a late dinner. The girls were so excited and they were treated like special guests, as were their dolls. The servers brought each doll a high chair that hooked onto the table, as well as a tiny teacup and saucer.

This girl was in baby doll heaven.

And the big girls thought it was pretty fun, too.

The girls ordered pink lemonades which were brought out with pink-striped paper straws.

The dessert menu is filled with all sorts of yummy goodies. Ashley and I decided to split the chocolate fondue tray, which came with sprinkle-covered marshmallows, brownie bites, and strawberries with a warm chocolate sauce for dipping.

These little boxes were on the table, and inside are questions to help pass the time.

Mommy photo! Ashley and I grew up together (our moms are sisters), so it's so fun watching our girls do the same.

The little girls each ordered "Cookies & Milk." This included 2 cookies (they picked between chocolate chip and sugar cookies, and white or chocolate milk.). The milk was served ice cold in a white porcelain bottle with a little upside-down teacup on top, and they got to pour their milk into their own teacup.

After our quick dessert, we headed into the store next door and let the girls run wild. There's plenty to look at and, if you are a millionaire, there's also plenty to buy! (Ha! I'm only half kidding. I do love their stuff, but it's definitely hard to purchase when you can get the Target/Walmart stuff for so much cheaper.)
Addie Jane and Mary Ella stuck together the entire time and poured over every display, outfit and accessory. Addie Jane had some birthday money to spend, so these girls had some decisions to make.

In the end, sweet Addie Jane bought both herself AND Mary Ella an outfit for their dolls - they chose one of Julie's outfits - a 70's inspired tunic dress with boots and a head wrap. Addie certainly didn't have to do this but we weren't surprised at all and are so thankful. We love you AJ!

Next, we headed to the carousel, dolls in tow.

Then finally we decided to eat a very late dinner at Cheesecake Factory and headed to the hotel. We stayed at the Hyatt Place, right across from the mall, and I would highly recommend this hotel. It could have easily slept 6 people + kids. Our room had a huge sectional that folded into a bed, as well as 2 double beds. Next time I go to Atlanta for an overnight trip, we will be staying here again.

We slept in (hallelujah!) then woke up and grabbed a quick breakfast downstairs. I snapped this picture outside. The only to-go cups they had for kids were the coffee cups. EK was carrying hers around like she was a celebrity.

The girls were so excited to pack up their dolls in their new outfits and head out!

Our first and only stop on the way home was Ikea, of course. Now, Ikea on a Saturday isn't nearly as much fun as a weekday trip, because of crowds, but I'll take what I can get. What we didn't know was that it was some sort of Family Day at Ikea, and pretty much everyone within a 5-state radius had come to shop that day. Cue panic attack. But again, we'll take what we can get. We decided to brave the crowds anyway.

We waited 30 minutes to check the big girls into the kids area... only to be told our pick-up time was a mere 45 minutes away. Ummm what? Yeah. It was that crowded. So we basically made it through the kitchen dishes and then had to go back and get the girls. Needless to say, it was a whirlwind Ikea trip but we still found some goodies and the girls were such troopers. I'm just glad we made it out alive. And I think I'll save my Ikea trips for during the week from now on.

This was the perfect overnight getaway and we're so thankful we have Addie Jane in our lives. They've never known life without each other and I look forward to watching them grow up together. Love these girls. Happy 6th Birthday, Addie Jane! We love you oh so much.
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