Madison is eleven years old today! What a birthday to have though - it was such a full day for her. She was off to Summer Xtreme, off to Stars and Strikes, which is exactly what she would have wanted to do on her birthday.
When she first arrived at the church in Gwinnett this morning, everyone was cheering and a really large group of people sang "Happy Birthday" to her, and that just didn't stop for the rest of the day. It was pretty funny, actually. She was sort of running away from it by day's end!
Our service was great again, with worship, skits, another message from Pastor Halston, and of course part two of "Titanium Heroes."
Right after this, it was time to head to Stars and Strikes. She had such a great time there!
This is her on one of those virtual rides that send you on a mine car or something like that. The chairs vibrate or push left or right, responding to whatever it is that is seen on the screens there. She ran from game to game, going on the bumper cars, the laser maze, and of course eating some pizza as well. Here she is with some friends on her birthday.
Pastor Cameron likes to make funny faces this week! Madison has her Cyborg arms on, as do many of the kids in her group. As an added bonus, she has her arms crossed like Wonder Woman, just in case you don't recognize her as a hero!
Here's the one thing she did a few times today:
Laser tag was a lot of fun. Because there weren't as many kids here, she got to do this a lot more. The kids loved this, but then again so did the adults. Madison and her group went in to the black-light labyrinth, ready for combat!
Eventually, it was time to come back, and it was time for pick-up. As cars lined up, we could hear the rumble of thunder in the distance. Storms were coming, with lots of rain. That much became evident for much of the ride home - we were traveling about thirty miles an hour on the interstate from Suwannee to just past Flowery Branch, as visibility for all the cars was around two car lengths. The rain was tremendous, solid, and non-stop. It was a gully washer if I'd ever seen one, with debris from trees flying into the road, and drivers clinging tightly to their steering wheels for miles on end.
We got home safely though, and ironically, it didn't rain a bit at our house. We were tired from the journey, but when we got home, Mommy set up a surprise for us: a tea party!
Madison's birthday continued at home! She got a few presents from the grandparents, and on top of that, she got a very special present from Mommy and Daddy. She's been wanting to go on a Disney Cruise for a while now, asking about in from time to time, or at least wistfully talking about how great the last one was. Mommy ordered a Disney Cruise ornament, and that was the first clue that something was coming. Then Madison opened her envelope, and inside it was a picture of a cruise ticket, this one with Madison's name on it. She looked up at us and asked, "Are you joking?" Of course, we're not joking! Hopefully we'll get back on board in September when Madison is on her fall break.
After chocolate covered strawberries, tea, and princess cupcakes, it was approaching time for bed. After all, we have another day of Summer Xtreme tomorrow! Before bed, we read from a birthday gift that Madison got: "The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl: Squirrel Meets World."
It's an early Squirrel Girl story. Our love of Squirrel Girl goes back a ways. We even had a KidPak service dedicated to her, along with a devotional entry in the superheroes book.
So Mommy and Daddy and Madison sat together before bedtime. We read from our devotional, of course. But then we read from this new book, and it's fun so far. She's different and unusual, but Squirrel Girl is always positive and optimistic, not really one to hold grudges. If only we could all be like Squirrel Girl, right?
Anyway, we all went to bed not long after this. It was a good birthday for Madison, certainly much better than last year's birthday. This year had all kinds of fun, games, and gifts. It was just what you need for a birthday party!