This was her second big surprise of the day. Her first one was that her daddy spent the day at her school, volunteering in the "Watch D.O.G.S" program. The Watch D.O.G.S. (Dads of Great Students) is a school-based father involvement program. The dads spend at least one day a year helping in their kids' schools by reading with students in small groups and doing other things as assigned by the school principal. Of course, Clara was proud as punch to have her daddy at school all day long.
In the evening, we went to the Rain Forest Cafe for Clara's birthday dinner. Dan and I had never been there before, so it was as exciting for us as it was for the kids. The interior of the restaurant is like a jungle. There are all sorts of life-sized animatronics inside, including elephants and gorillas which were the noisiest of the bunch. Every few minutes a huge thunder and lightning storm occurs, and the animals go pretty crazy. All of the noise was a little overwhelming for the kids. Robert always hid his ears and sometimes covered his eyes, as well, while he waited for the storm to pass and the animals to calm down.
For dessert Clara got the chocolate VOLCANO. It was really pretty, with a sparkler in the top and lots of chocolate syrup running down the sides of the decadently rich chocolate cake slices which cradled vanilla ice cream. Yum! The wait staff brought it out singing a loud Volcano song, with lots of clapping.
Once we got back home, the kids took their showers, got into their p.j.s and then got to watch a Frosty the Snowman video before going to bed.
This morning Dan and I went to a nearby hospital, where Clara's school choir (3rd through 5th grades) performed. Kelsey was volunteering at the school for their Santa's workshop, so couldn't be there. I took pictures and recorded some videos for her, so she wouldn't miss out, completely. (This is just a short clip.)
I didn't have any trouble finding Clara in the crowd!