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Posts Tagged ‘party’

A week and a half ago, we celebrated baby’s girl’s impending arrival with a second baby shower!

My mother-in-law and sister-in-law volunteered to throw a shower, and they did a wonderful job! For decorations, they chose to use washcloths to make adorable flower centerpieces and little washcloth babies!

This time, I didn’t need to worry so much over diet! I enjoyed the pasta salad, cheese and crackers, fruit tray and little sandwiches! And of course, the cake!

While we ate, we played a few games, including the baby playdoh competition and baby word unscramble.

It’s good to be the judge! I selected three winners, including a baby that was on it’s belly for tummy time, a baby sitting up, and a baby with full scenery around it! There were a lot of fun playdoh babies, and I think this was my favorite baby shower game ever.

While you might not think to need a second baby shower or consider if frivolous, I think it is always appropriate to celebrate a new baby if there is opportunity!

Plus, there were definitely some items we still needed. Would you believe we made it through Jameson’s entire baby-hood with just 6 bottles total? I washed those every single night!

Here are a few things I found I needed for a second baby, some of which I registered for and some that I’ve purchased:

  • An umbrella stroller (this is really so that Jameson can also sit in a stroller! And is a cheaper option than the limited time use of a double stroller)
  • Newborn nap lounger (they didn’t have these when I had Jameson, but I heard from recent mothers that they are really nice!)
  • New diaper rash cream
  • More diapers and wipes!
  • New diaper bag (one zipper on ours no longer worked)
  • New bottle nipples for the bottles we currently have, in all ages/sizes… as well as extra bottles since we didn’t have enough last time!
  • A few replacement parts for my pump
  • Bottle warmer! (a real wish to have item that we didn’t get last time)
  • Another cool mist humidifier
  • New pacifiers and several sizes
  • A bath and nursery organizer, since some of that storage stuff went to Jameson’s new room
  • I’m a Big Brother book
  • Pink version of the lullaby glow worm that Jameson loves
  • More plug covers
  • Microwave sterilizer

Even though I registered for a lot of new items, for the most part, baby girl got clothes! Which is okay by me! People love to by little girl outfits, and while I have a lot of gender neutral newborn items, it was nice to receive girl clothing for most of the other baby ages.

About 6 weeks out from our due date now, I’ve already washed a lot, though we are still waiting on baby girl’s new dresser to arrive.

Jameson and dad arrived, and Jameson was a little ball of energy and wanted to be a big helper!

He enjoyed his cake, of which he ate most of the icing and little of the cake part, of course.

It was a wonderful shower, and I had a great time. A big thanks to Emma who took all the photos at the shower for me! After the shower, we had a very-mini-reunion with my friends I grew up with including Emma, Jamie and Tara. I only wish I could’ve enjoyed a drink as well!

And a even bigger thanks to my mother and sister in laws who threw such a wonderful shower for our little girl!

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We weren’t originally going to have a party for Jameson, but I got it in my head to make some invitations and it was all over after that.

elmoinvite-web

We did tone it down quite a bit as compared to last year, and banners and party favors were purchased at a party store. They make it so easy! We also invited quite a few less people so the house wasn’t so crowded.

The other Elmo touches were brought in by our cupcakes and fruit tray, inspiration courtesy of Pinterest.

Elmo Cupcakes

Elmo Cupcakes

The cupcakes themselves were a box mix (had to make something easy!); the mouths are Oreos which were tough to cut right. The eyes are large marshmallows, cut in half, and topped with store-bought brownie icing pupils. The noses are candy orange slices.

The icing was the hardest part. I borrowed a fancy icing tool from a friend and used a star tip to get the fur effect, and by the end my thumb was numb for a day or so! We used the red food dye in a tube from the bakery aisle to get the very red color, and used the majority of the small tube for it.

Elmo Fruit Tray

Elmo Fruit Tray

We thought we would half left-over fruit for sure, but as it turns out, young kids love fruit! And parents love giving it to them. We had no fruit left! Brian also made little hot dogs, buffalo chicken dip and a jarlsberg cheese dip. We didn’t actually have that much food left over this time.

And that was about it for Elmo decor! From there, it was all about Jameson, his friends, gifts, blowing out the candle and capturing all those moments on camera.

Playing with Grandma

Jameson’s cousin Griffin loved playing with the boys. He played fort, ball, and assisted wherever he could! Jameson and Jonathan loved him.

Playing

Playing

Lily, another one of the older kids of the bunch (though only by about 6 months or s0!), also wanted to be a helper! Jameson didn’t mind at all. He’s pretty expert at opening gifts now, but extra hands never hurt!

Opening Gifts

Opening Gifts

Opening Card

I had dad help with most of the unwrapping so I could capture the moments on camera. Jameson was very serious about his gift opening, rarely pausing to relax. This was one of the photos where I actually caught a reaction from him.

Books

Jameson got some new books from mom and dad!

Mr Potato Head

One of the other big hits was the tools. Brian said yesterday Jameson was playing with his toy tape measure and wrapping it around his head (like they did at the doctor’s office just last week!)

Tools

Brian’s Uncle Mike and cousins Gabrielle and Griffin gave Jameson extra large gifts!

Big Gifts

Big GIfts

Perfect for his current love of the Lion King and wild animals! Jameson got a couple wild animal playsets. We can’t wait to get these set up for him!

We followed gift opening with dessert!

Dessert

Blowing out Candles

Jameson actually blew out his own candle! Way to go Jameson!

Eating Cupcakes

Cupcakes

He knew they were Elmo cupcakes! Jameson’s friend Jonathan also knew it was Elmo and got very upset when his dad pulled off one of the eyeballs, it was too funny!

After dessert, it was play time again!

Playing Keep Away

Included in the party favors (which I may or may not have forgotten to mention to the first party-leavers, oops!) were whistles, which I’m sure all the parents loved. Jameson’s doesn’t leave his mouth!

Whistles

We had been telling Jameson “Happy Birthday” all day long, with his response occasionally being “happy day”. Without prompting, at bed time and after goodnights, he told me “happy day!” so sweetly. Yes it was Mr. Jameson!

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Little Gym

The weekend prior (Nov. 10), we had a birthday party to go to at the Little Gym! I was pretty excited to go, since Jameson has never been in a real gym like that, and I thought he would love to climb around. I was right!

Jameson loved climbing over the gym materials, and walking along the balance beam as if he’d already done it before!

He was one of the younger children there, but he enjoyed watching the bigger kids run and jump around too, and taking his own turn when the space cleared up.

They got out the parachute, and he wasn’t sure what to do at first, so I walked him over and helped him hold on to one of the handles. After that, he followed along himself really well!

He didn’t scramble underneath or into the middle with the other kids, but sat on our lap for those activities. I am enjoying my timid little boy while it lasts! I’m sure it won’t be long before he’s jumping in like the rest.

Just this week he seems to start understand how to jump, but that weekend it was all still a mystery for him, and he continued to lift one leg up really high and taking a big leap to try and jump!

After a bit more free play, they rounded up the kids to have snack and open the birthday girl’s gifts. Jameson drenched himself in a cup of water, but luckily we had an overnight bag with spare shirts in the car, ready to take him to grandma’s for the night while we finished more of his big boy room!

He ate all the icing from the cupcake and clearly enjoyed it. He told us he had fun, and we enjoyed watching him run around.

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Sasha’s Party

Saturday, we had a little birthday party for Sasha, who turned 10 years old on October 1. Many of her favorite people were there, and it was conveniently timed that Jameson napped through the arrival of most of them, so she could greet everyone herself with no interruptions!

She did get a couple treats and toys out of it, but mostly it was just a gathering involving extra belly rubs! We had photos up of her along the stairs and mantle, and displayed her pedigree chart on the table along with photos of her mom and dad.

Then Jameson woke up and stole to show!

Lily came over with her brother, who was a champ the entire time.

Jameson showed off his skills with the empty dishwasher tab canister. Yes, we saved it for fun. Jameson also likes to bang with his drumsticks on the other side, since it obviously makes more fun noises than the plastic drum he has.

My parents even drove all the way up for a couple hours, though Jameson didn’t say “Meemaw” as he had for the first time just the night before during FaceTime!

I made pumpkin pie for dessert (Jameson only wanted the whipped cream), a crust-less version which recipe I got from Laura and Dave, who also came with their daughter Rylan.

Meanwhile, Lily and Jameson started running around the dining room table, which I thought was pretty hilarious. Lily did fall and burst into tears, but all was well!

I love Jameson’s sneaky face in this one. He appears to have stolen all the cloths from the baby wipes case that Rylan was playing with.

Sasha alternated between her bed and the front door, being exhausted by watching out for all the children!

It was time for my parents to say goodbye, which signaled the beginning of the end of Sasha’s party. We had plenty of left overs of pulled pork, raw veggies and pumpkin pie throughout the week.

The crowd left a really tired puppy! And Jameson has enjoyed looking at all the pictures of “Sashy” all week since we left them up.

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I was so excited to attend his school’s Halloween party on Halloween since I haven’t spent much time there with him. I loved seeing all the other kids, him in costume, and watching the teacher/student interactions.

When I arrived, Jameson jumped up out of Cara’s lap and over to me. We were waiting to start the parade, so we sang some songs and then did a dance. Jameson seemed a little out of sorts, already in his costume.

Jameson put his blanket on the cots and all the kids lined up and out to the central area to begin the parade through the rooms.

Okay, it was really scattered. It must have been their ages, but there wasn’t a lot of structure to our parade. I took hold of Jameson’s hand since he seemed a little lost and we went through just a couple rooms before returning back to ours.

I think that he was a little warm in the costume actually, and when we got back to the classroom he cried a little trying to unzip himself from the costume, poor thing!

I helped him out of the costume, and everything was immediately better. Also, it was snack time!

They gave the kids cups with a little apple juice in it, and Jameson did really well! I was impressed, since at home he was dumping water on the floor from cups on purpose.

After about 3 refills (about half a cup of straight apple juice), I suggested maybe he might want water next instead hehe! ;)

And here’s Mr. Nathan again, smirking when he saw me taking photos of him!

I also got a picture of his Star of the Month board. He was showcased during October, so Halloween was his very last day on the board.

And I finally captured a smile from Jameson! I commented to another mom there that I could finally put away my camera and she laughed and said she does the same thing. We are all the same, and all different, us moms!

I did escape before snack time was over so that I didn’t need to clean up. I had to get to work, and also change into my own costume.

Here is my team, much bigger than just a few months ago. It was a good time, and we walked into the work cafeteria blasting some Spice Girls.

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Saturday was Miss Vivienne’s 1st birthday party! It was unseasonably cool (in the 60’s) and neither Brian nor I knew that it was going to be held outside. So, when we arrived and discovered how chilly it was outside, Brian headed home for some jackets for Jameson and I.

In the meantime, food arrived, and I imagined my terror toddler squirming out of my grasp and/or grabbing at the food to dump it all over me. I was grateful that JP & Lisa were there with Jonathan so that if necessary I could have an adult helper!

However, Jameson was in rare form, and sat still in my left arm while I also held the plate of food right next to him and which I ladled onto with my free hand. I was impressed with myself, for sure.

He then sat like a little angel on my lap on the picnic table, eating off the plate politely with me. Pizza, blueberries, a little pasta. I also enjoyed the meatballs and chips and cheese dip, which Jameson tried at our second helping and enjoyed as well despite a little spice.

Finally, Brian returned with our jackets, and while he ate, we took the kids off to play with the toys they had around!

It was breezy, so it was easy for Jameson to “blow bubbles” by simply holding up the wand at the right angle. He was so excited. He loved playing with the bubbles.

The breeze didn’t stop him from trying to blow the bubbles out himself though:

He didn’t try to dump out the bubble solution either. We were pretty impressed with his maturity; we’ve considering picking a big bubble wand up from the dollar store. It was a long time of entertainment, and would’ve been longer, except that we had to share.

Before Vivienne opened her gifts, we took a break and went down to the nearby playground, which Jameson also loved. It was a perfect location for a birthday party!

After break time, we headed back up for a diaper change and gift opening. I went with my practical-but-still-seems-frivously-awesome StrideRite gift card for shoes for the soon-to-be-walker, and then I also found this gem: Wooden Shape Sorting Clock. It says 3 and up, but the pieces didn’t seem too small for a 1 year old as long as that one year old isn’t insistent about stuffing their face with wood.

Anyway, it seemed like a great grow-with-me toy, and our lucky day, this lucky lady likes to sort shapes like crazy so I’m sure she’ll enjoy it.

Jameson was a champ, but since he had an interrupted nap in order to arrive in time for the party, he was starting to get a little antsy. He said goodbye to Vivienne’s mom Lisa, and gave high fives all around. He’s always adorably shy around Vivienne which makes me laugh.

It was a great time, despite the cool weather (which I argue is better than 100 degree weather any day!). The location was ideal, and makes me wish Jameson’s birthday was in warmer weather. Oh well… we’ll just have to find other excuses to party in the summer!

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Last weekend was a party weekend! On Saturday the 30th, we went to an old co-worker-friend’s surprise birthday party! Frank was turning 50, and was totally in shock. It was also fun to see other old friends from those days when I was the intern dating the full time employee… those were the good old days ;)

Jameson mostly ate pineapple and pretzels with the salt scraped off of them, and played with another empty bubble container. (That was fun, walking into the house with all those people and emptying a brand new bubble container)

He was great for the most part, until the end. Then we commandeered a stroller from one of our friends for him to settle down a bit, and he was entertained by their daughter. They played the “dropsy” game over and over again. At least, Jameson did, and Abigail obliged!

Sunday we were excited to fry another turkey for a party at JP and Lisa’s house. Friends Rob and Christina came up from Florida for another visit, so we were very excited to get all the boys together again + the new lady miss Vivienne!

When we arrived, everyone was already there. At first, Jameson was extremely shy. I was surprised, since I assumed that since he was in daycare, he would naturally be more outgoing. But he has a definite stranger awareness now, and he didn’t remember our recent visit, or the activity scared him at first.

Within about 15 minutes, he was collecting toys to stack, and within the hour, he was playing with the other boys.

(Kitchens are full of good toys. I liked that JP and Lisa let Jonathan get into the cupboards like Brian and I do for Jameson at home. This totally occupied them for 15 minutes)

I will say that for a few small exceptions, Jameson is a very good toy sharer. And even though he was afraid of the baby, he gave her her toy back after she lost it and cried out, pointing at it.

A note: One of the most valuable lessons we took out of sign language class were learning that babies and toddlers don’t understand sharing. What they can understand is taking turns, and that is what we’ve emphasized (not using the work share) in dealing with Jameson sharing. And since he frequently changes his mind and moves onto something else, its very easy for him to give up his turn for a little while.

Here is Vivienne, showing off her two bottom teeth. She’s just couple couple months shy of one year old, can you believe it?! She loved the ball, and she also enjoyed hanging onto a little car. She’s a pro crawler now.

Well, there was a turkey being fried somewhere during this time but I only got the finished product:

Jameson sat nicely on the table for about ten seconds before he wanted to walk around and eat, so we brought him on our laps. He enjoyed the fried squash (yellow; if it was green, he didn’t want it).

Jonathan however ate at the table, and he very much enjoyed the turkey…

After dinner, Bobby and Jonathan soaked themselves in the sprinkler, but Jameson wanted nothing to do with it. I was disappointed, though it was kind of ironic since Jameson was the only one in a swimsuit.

Jameson was more interested in rocks, and the slide.

Jameson’s gotten very good at the slide. He can get his legs out from beneath him now without help, and goes down without hold anyone’s hand (most of the time). A recent daycare report said he went down the big spiral slide they have in the gym all by himself!

After everyone was dry and inside, we decided to take some group photos. Last time, the boys were happy enough to lay on the ground for our photo.

This time, we were simply impressed they were all sitting still, let alone smiling! Lisa was a brilliant attention- and smile-getting clown; she was fabulous.

I cranked my ISO way up for that shot so I could capture it in natural light; but I’m not too happy with the grain. Next time I’ll bring my flash for sure, but it still turned out great. Please note that last time, Jameson was the only one missing pants, but this time he was the only one with pants! One of these days, we’ll all the get the right pants memo.

And next time, we’ll be sure to get these shots with Vivienne in them too; unfortunately, they had to leave before we thought to get a group shot!

We followed the shots of the three together with the adults, but that was much less successful.

The ladies were better at it ;)

Also, I totally cheated for that smile. I tickled Jameson’s armpits. He’s ticklish there, and it works for a smile without fail most every time.

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