Kembe and India turned 9 last week. What a fun age! I am really loving this phase of life we are in. Not yet teenagers, yet everyone can wipe their own butt and pack their own lunch. It’s the sweet spot. Although, man, they were cute when they were 4. This was their first party together: Kembe had just come home from Haiti and was a little shell-shocked at our American birthday party. My how times have changed. We decided to do a really casual birthday party this year at a local park. Our house is still pretty torn up with the remodel, and we needed to keep things on-the-cheap. So we made cupcakes and cakepops, and planned some easy games. We did a water-balloon toss. And a silly-string war. And we had a bounce-house on hand, which is always a favorite‘ After that, had cupcakes and called it a day. It was short and sweet and simple, but the kids had a blast and several parents commented on how they appreciated how low-key it was. I think this might be our new thing, because I liked not having to worry about a meal, or about how many siblings showed up, or keeping a head count or restricting the guest list. They each invited as many friends as they wanted. I know they might eventually want their own separate parties, but so far I love that they enjoy celebrating together. Oh, and no goody bags of plastic stuff! India made cakepops to pass out at the end. I will share that recipe later this week.