This week we celebrated Little Bear’s birthday.  It was his ninth birthday.  Hoorah.

Little Bear is not a cute pet name for either of my children.  Little Bear is exactly that, a little bear.  Little Bear is Joshua’s favourite, most special teddy.  The teddy that if it ever got lost would cause J and, therefore the rest of the family, the maximum amount of heartache and distress.

Little Bear is J’s bed companion, travel buddy and playmate.  Little Bear has his own teddy, J gives him pocket money, and he has his own clothes; ‘we’ made a hat and cardi (out of an old sock) to keep him warm whilst in Switzerland.  This hat and cardi then prompted the manufacture of a wardrobe (an empty shoe box) in which to keep his belongings.  However, I am wondering if this latest celebration has taken it a bit too far.

Joshua celebrates his own birthday in the summer and around then he started talking about when Little Bear would have his birthday and he announced that it was 11th January.  To be honest, I didn’t give this a great deal of thought.

Joshua, however, did.

During the summer holidays, when we were in between homes, J made a house for Little Bear.  He spent hours making a three storey house complete bunk-bed (paper mattresses and cardboard duvets), bookcase and mini books, pot plants, windows, a goal and a whole load of other stuff out of random bits of cardboard.  We then moved house and Little Bear’s house came too.  Ever since it has been sat in our cubby hole (soon to be a sewing/craft den – very exciting, but I digress), not being played with but somehow avoiding the recycling bin.

In the aftermath of Christmas J started talking about Little Bear’s birthday again and that he should make a card and a cake and get a balloon for him.  “He’s going to be so excited,” he said.  As the day got closer J really did make a card.  Then, because Daddy had helped him make the card, I felt that I had to help him make a cake.  So, on Sunday there we were, making Little Bear a cake.  A real cake.  Not a pretend cake.  Not even a cardboard cake, but a proper bone fide birthday sponge cake.  In the shape of a bear.  Problem was J made the cake mix then went to a birthday party (of a classmate, a real person that is) and of course the first cake got stuck in the tin.  The second attempt didn’t really rise properly so then I couldn’t let J down and made another batch of cake mix.  The third cake was fine.  When J returned from the party we iced the cake and hid it in a tin “so that Little Bear will be surprised”.

11th January arrives.  It is Little Bear’s birthday.  We all wish Little Bear a “happy birthday” and J promises him lots of surprises when he comes back from school.

We have a birthday tea during which we all laugh hysterically when Little Bear sits on the whoopee cushion.  We cheer when J hands over his card and present (which of course is the house) and ask what Little Bear thinks of it (apparently it’s “ace”).  We coo as Tilly produces a card and present that she has made.  Joshua and Tilly light the candles on Little Bear’s cake and we all sing Happy Birthday.

Apparently Little Bear is over the moon.  He thinks it is the best birthday he has ever had.

I am thinking that we have all gone a little loopy.