Yesterday we had a Super Bowl party with a lot of our friends, including many toddlers. There was a lot of energy and chaos in the house! We had a Mexican buffet, so I made a margarita cake. Several months ago I bought about 30 cake mixes for next to nothing as a result of my excessive couponing. Because I need to use the stockpile up that I have created, I decided to also make some miniature cupcakes with chocolate frosting (I also got about a dozen tubs of frosting for free on a separate deal).
While we were getting the house ready for the party, I told Catherine we are having a Super Bowl party. Of course she didn't know what the Super Bowl was, so I told her it was a football game which Daddy liked to watch. I told her the children could play while he watched the football game.
She reminded me that she had had a princess party and Sabrina had had an Elmo party. She said "So Daddy is having a football party?" I said yes. Then I finished getting ready for the party - cooking and cleaning all afternoon.
Late in the game I put Catherine down for bed while the serious football fans watched the rest of the game. By this point I had completely forgotten about the conversation we had had earlier.
As I was tucking her in, she said "we didn't sing for Daddy." Sometimes we sing songs at bed time, so I told her we could sing tomorrow. She said "we were supposed to sing "Happy Birthday" for him." I said it is not Daddy's birthday. Ever the logical, observant child, Catherine said "But you said he was having a football party and we had cupcakes." At that moment I remembered the conversation we had had that afternoon.
I realized that "themed party + cupcakes = birthday party" in Catherine's mind, a fairly simple equation, but wrong. I just assumed that she knew the Super Bowl was an event we celebrated just "because." I had no idea that she would equate cupcakes with birthdays. I have to be so careful as to what her expectations are, either spoken or unspoken.