While it’s probably the most stressful minute of my year to try to capture that shot, I’m going to try to do it every birthday. (And yes, I realize that the date format is in European style in that shot. Oh well.)
Here are previous years’ clock photos:
Her first birthday clock photo didn’t go so hot.
Getting GB’s clock photo will prove a bit more difficult, as he was born at 2:31pm (despite his birth certificate saying 2:41pm–trust me, I remember. Oh, I remember.)
Sorry, I’m going to have to embarrass you at school every year, Buddy! All in the name of tradition.
So for her third birthday this year, I decided to go with what we know and have a breakfast pancake party… a Princess Pancake Party.
We took over the mezzanine level of our Central Market House downtown. The Market is closed on Sundays, but Mezzogiorno at the Market is open and happens to make bangin’ pancakes.
I decorated the mezzanine with Dollar Tree finds, in pink of course. And yes, those are frappuccino bottles doubling as vases. I saved a case of them after seeing a cute Pin for a milk and cookies party theme. No, I never had a milk and cookies party. Yes, this is the first time I’m using them in two years.
I gave the kids a table of their own and filled it with activities to (hopefully) keep them entertained while waiting for pancakes.
Coloring books, crayons and glitter pens to decorate their individual princess hats (again, all Dollar Tree).
Breakfast snacks consisted of a breakfast pastry platter, fruit tray, coffee, mini bottles of chocolate milk and orange juice… and mimosa fixings for the grownups (especially for me).
The birthday girl was so excited to see all her family and friends gathered to celebrate her.
It was a perfect #whatholdywore opportunity to capture her party ensemble.
Holdy and her friends had fun coloring and decorating their hats.
And the moment we were all waiting for: Birthday Pancakes!
After we all ate pancakes and Holden opened her gifts, the party was over, lasting about an hour and a half in total–my kind of kids’ party!
Oh, and I’ve been trying to find theme-appropriate t-shirts for myself to wear to each party. I found this tee at 5 Below (flower crown is my own!):
I’m thinking this may be our last birthday party for a bit. Although this party was relatively easy to pull off, I’d like to focus on fun activities/experiences, rather than a party, for the next few birthdays. Remind me I said this next year!
While GB’s First Birthday party was Saturday, today, March 23, marked the one-year anniversary of his arrival. March 23 at 2:31pm, to be exact (despite the fact that his birth certificate incorrectly states, “2:41pm.” I was there people–I know! They also originally spelled his name, “Gatsy” so clearly they cannot be trusted.)
Holden was born at 7:23pm, so the time is a bit more manageable. She, of course, is not so manageable.
To capture GB’s 2:31 photo, I skipped out of work for a bit (sorry, Boss). When I got home, he was napping. I figured I’d just sneak in and snap a quick photo while he slept. Hey–at least it would be kinda funny, right? When I got up there at 2:30, though, he was awake in his crib. Even better. We’ll just sit the clock phone with a clock display in there and snap a shot easy peasy.
I mean, at least it’s better than this, right?
Tonight after dinner, I let the little hoss enjoy more birthday cake. While he was a little tentative at his birthday party at first, he seemed to have gotten the hang of it the second time around.
My sweet, sweet GB. I could tell while I was growing you that you were going to be a gentle soul. You waited until your exact due date to come into this world. I say it’s because you just wanted to hang out with me as long as possible, and you have, indeed, been a Mama’s Boy this first year of your life. Not in a derogatory way, but in the way that you and I have a special bond that is impossible to describe.
You are remarkably easygoing, for which I continue to count my blessings because, as we all know, your sister is not what you would call easygoing. You’ve been pleasant and content the entire first year of your life. Once you learned how to smile, you pretty much haven’t stopped. When someone smiles at you, you smile right back. You now have a big toothy (7 teeth!) grin that’s infectious. And you have a special smile that’s just for me that melts my heart every time. You give me the biggest kisses (sometimes with tongue–lol you’re going to be so embarrassed to read that later).
For the longest time, really the only thing that ever upset you was not being held enough to your liking–as I said, “Mama’s Boy.” I’ve taken advantage of holding, hugging and snugging you as much as I could this past year. You pretty much shared my bed for the first two months of your life. Now that you’re crawling and almost walking (!), your desire to be held is weaning 🙁
And oh boy, do you crawl. You climb the stairs like a champ all by yourself. You pull yourself up on everything. You’ve had a few tumbles into the coffee table… sorry about that. You’re strong and determined and persistent. Before you crawled, you rolled everywhere to get to your destination–I would watch you identify your target and then roll across the room to get there. You’re curious and investigative and full of joy. You’re obsessed with doors for some reason.
You’ve been a wonderful sleeper your entire life. Now when you’re tired, you’ll lay your little head right down on the floor–or on me–and I know it’s time for bed. No fights; no fussing. You’ve slept through the night (10-11 hours) since you were about 15 weeks old. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. It really has made raising two kids under the age of three just a little bit easier.
Speaking of the second child thing… I’m sorry, Buddy. I’m sorry I only got your photos professionally taken once. I’m sorry I have yet to make a Shutterfly album for you when I made three for Holdy in the first year of her life. I’m sorry most of your toys are your sister’s hand-me-downs. I’m sorry I would sometimes prop your bottle up on a pillow because I wasn’t able to sit and hold you while you drank. I’m sorry that I work long hours and I can’t be with you all the time. It’s tough sometimes, Buddy. I hope you’ll understand. I will make you at least one Shutterfly book though, I promise.
You love to “drum” and I swear, a few times, you’ve mimicked my patterns and rhythms. You and I will have screeching sessions and you’ll match my tone and volume. Your laugh is contagious. You love when I dance like a dork and make up silly songs for you and your sister.
Oh man, do you love your sister. From very early on, you’ve only had eyes for her. You love to watch her and try to join in what she’s doing. You’ll both probably kill me later for saying this, but you guys love taking baths together. You shriek and laugh and splash, so much so that I usually end up as soaked as the two of you.
For her part, Holdy is a wonderful sister and is very good about sharing with you (or at least giving you a consolation toy when she takes one from you). She may get a little rough sometimes with her affection, but she loves you just as fiercely. I can’t wait to watch you grow and play together. I hope you’ll always remain so close. I always tell her if she doesn’t start to eat, her little brother will soon outgrow her so she better treat him nicely.
Whoa boy, you love to eat. Since we started you on solids about six months ago, you can’t get enough of food. Often you’ll get hangry and yell at me for not feeding you fast enough. I’ve improvised by mostly allowing you to feed yourself so you can eat at your desired speed. Needless to say, mealtimes around here are messy. You and I usually share dinner… with you eating about 75% of it. We just stopped nursing in the last week or so. I have to admit it makes me kind of sad, though I’m also relieved to take ownership of my body again. I’m proud to say I nursed both of you for a year.
GB, it has been my absolute pleasure to be your mom and watch you grow this past year. You’ll probably never understand this, but your arrival into my life saved me. I was forever changed when you were first placed on my chest.
Raising you and your sister has been the hardest thing I’ve ever done but it’s also the most important and rewarding thing I’ve ever done. Sometimes I don’t feel like I’m doing a great job. Sometimes I get frustrated. Sometimes I break down. But please know I will always try my best to do right by you and Holdy and to make you proud. I hope you’ll always want to be your Mama’s Boy.
Holden’s first birthday is two weeks away (tomorrow!), so it’s been my goal to get her baby book into shape. At this point, it’s become more of a baby box, with her baby book inside it.
I ordered a Carter’s Keepsake Chest from Amazon. It has a top compartment that fits her (pretty thick) baby book, with two drawers below for various ephemera. So what do we have in this bad boy? In addition to the standard height/weight/visitors/price of a gallon of milk/first tooth/first words/etc. information, here are some extras that are in our baby book:
I had tons of photos and various sonograms that I wanted to include, so I taped envelopes in the book, flap-out, for more storage.
I love that pic of me-as-a-baby next to Holden. Our noses were pretty different, but I got so sick of everyone immediately saying she looked like my husband!
I included the front page of our local newspaper from the day she was born (folded up in another taped-in envelope)
My mom had a tiny pink rose waiting for Holden when we got home from the hospital. I pressed it and included it in the book.
In the drawers of the baby box, I included various mementos:
Cards, photos, the “First Trip” button from our trip to Disney World, the card that came with the flowers her dad sent her for Valentine’s Day, etc.
My favorite memento in the baby box?
I printed out the announcement I made on Facebook after Holden was born. I think it’s a cool way to capture all the well-wishes, and can serve as a reminder of our times for the future. I’m assuming one day I’ll have to answer when Holden asks, “What was Facebook?”
Did you get your baby’s book finished? Did you include anything fun that I’m missing?