Instead of having a big birthday party for Shepherd’s second birthday, we decided to do something fun and low-key together—just the four of us—that Shepherd would love. With a newborn, and trip planned close to Shepherd’s birthday, it was becoming stressful to me to coordinate (and, if I’m being honest, all of the details, like invitations and decorations, mean nothing to him!). So, when I saw a commercial advertising Sesame Street Live’s upcoming performance in Lincoln, I knew going to see his favorite characters would be a perfect way to celebrate our soon-to-be two-year-old.
The performance was almost three weeks before Shepherd’s big day, and we’d been building up Sesame Street Live all week. We told Shep we were going to meet Abby, Elmo, and Cookie, and he always looked at us blankly with a matter-of-fact “no” when we mentioned “The Sesames,” which is what he calls the Sesame Street Muppets… it was adorable! It was also a little unnerving; we weren’t sure how he’d react to life-size characters, and I could just imagine the worst-case scenario of him screaming in fear next to a six-foot Elmo.
We talked the day up a lot that morning, too… we gathered all of Sheppy’s “Sesames” and watched a couple of Sesame Street clips online. He wanted to bring Abby and Elmo with us, so we gladly brought them along.
Turns out, he absolutely loved the show. The storyline we saw was the “Make New Friends” story; it was about an hour and 45 minutes long with a 15-minute intermission in the middle. Lucky for us, the families behind and in front of us left at intermission, so we got to put all of our coats and gear in those seats and let Shepherd dance in the aisles. It was great to be in an arena full of toddlers, because we didn’t fret at all when Shepherd got antsy, accidentally kicked a seat back, or wanted to stand up.
Shepherd had no trouble paying attention to the whole show; the dancing and singing entranced him, and he loved the double-sided Elmo/Cookie Monster balloons. By the time the show ended, Shepherd was starting to fall asleep, so our plan to get pizza afterward didn’t happen. Instead, Aaron took Shepherd to get a balloon, and on the way back to our car we stopped for a few pictures in front of the show’s trailer.
I’m so glad we went this route for Shepherd’s second birthday party. It was a fun, relaxed and all about our (almost) two-year-old. We’ll be celebrating him again on his real birthday in just a few days, and I will have a post of the month-by-month pictures I’ve been taking for the last two years. I’m so thankful I get the privilege of being this little boy’s (and his baby brother’s!) mama.