We celebrated Ellie’s first and second birthdays at the house with some fun themes (a lemonade stand and “two-two” party). This year, with a new baby sister at home, we thought getting OUT of the house would be a better bet. For her third birthday celebration, we had a fun “birthday at the bay” party. Mission Bay in San Diego is our “happy place” and so we thought it would be perfect to share with friends and family for Ellie’s special day.
I’m not sure why fully committing to a baby name is so difficult for me – is it this way for everyone?! I know I tend to be indecisive but even once we’ve decided on a name, I still find it hard to declare her name to the world or do anything “official” like decorate her room with her initials. It’s just so final, before things are final, you know?
ORIGNAL POST WAS POSTED IN MAY 2015. I HAVE SINCE UPDATED IT WITH A YEAR UPDATE
(FIND IT BELOW ORIGINAL POST).
Original Post —- May, 2015:
We started potty training Ellie a week and a half ago, coincidentally on her 21-month birthday. I thought I’d share about our little mini-journey: the steps we followed and guidelines we’re still following. Looking back I think it’s almost more about when the parents are ready than the child. There are going to be messes, frustrations and your patience will be tried. But your kid is bright – and they’ll get it!
I love Cinco de Mayo but had honestly forgotten today was the holiday until Ellie’s Uncle Chris reminded me about the adorable dress he bought her on a recent trip to Mexico. With only an hour of sunlight left in the day, we managed to squeeze in a little photo shoot. A “pretty dress,” fun props and a hose got little miss to cooperate quite well…and end up quite soaked.
Call me cheesy, but I think activities at birthday parties (or any party for that matter) are a lot of fun! Anything that gets people involved and having a great time is a good thing.
I didn’t have a particular theme in mind when planning Ellie’s 2nd birthday party. All I knew is that I really wanted to create a tutu – actually a “two-two” – making station and have all her little friends make and take a tutu of their own creation. The play on words was too good to pass up (again, call me cheesy)!
I knew I wanted to document Ellie’s growth and progression in monthly baby photos but I wanted to do something other than the standard number on a onesie. Don’t get me wrong – I think those are super adorable but I wanted to see if we could come up with something a little out of the box. I tend to like to complicate simple things, even when I have a brand new baby apparently…
A simple formula for getting cute 4th of July photos of your toddler: buy a $5 balloon and put her in front of a simple background. Don’t expect her to look at the camera.
I forget exactly how the quote goes but it’s basically about the moments in life that matter being the ones that happen “in between” or when you’re not expecting or forcing them. Although I’m a planner and am particular about things being the way I like them, I realize more and more that the good stuff comes when plans aren’t being made, when moments just happen on their own. I had a small example of that happen today. I was taking pictures of Ellie quietly eating her snack by the back door (a rare occurrence that must be documented). It was a cute moment that looked like it could make a cute picture. But what happened next was even better.
I’ve always had a favorite baby picture of myself, I’m in the cutest little hooded poncho made by my Gramma and wearing baby Nike Cortez shoes. Not too long ago my mom came across the poncho and naturally I vowed to recreate the picture with Ellie. And then months went by and I (naturally) forgot about it. Since I don’t trust such an “important” picture to my still-developing photography skills, I enlisted E’s Uncle Chris. We got her decked out in her poncho (a little small for her now) and somehow she cooperated and let him snap away.
This Mother’s Day will be my second. I remember being surprised last year at how much the holiday meant to me, and how happy it made me. I was in the Mommy-club, and surprisingly I felt like I belonged, like I earned my spot. My baby was almost 9 months old, I was starting to settle into our “new normal” and the first couple months were fortunately just far enough away to start becoming a blur. So on that Mother’s Day, I felt good. I felt PROUD.