Friday, October 21, 2011

Hutton's 1st Birthday Party

The idea of having an airplane-themed birthday party actually started when I was thinking about Keaton's 2nd birthday.  However, when the time came to start planning it was wildly apparent that a train party was in order.  So when it was time to start thinking  about Hutt's 1st birthday the airplane theme popped back in my head.  That's one of the beautiful things about the first birthday party, it's really up to you.  At one year old kids aren't typically into things yet and so, as the parent, you get to decide.  Just one year later, when Keaton turned two, that was all over.

Months before the party I started scouring Etsy for party supplies and when I found these invitations and coordinating accessories by Mary Had a Little Party I instantly fell in love.  Right then, at midnight on a Wednesday while sitting at the dining room table by the light of the computer, plans for a vintage bi-plane 1st birthday party were set in motion.

We started the party with a cook-out type lunch.  Burgers, brats, hot dogs, pasta salad, potato salad, veggie tray, and a fruit bowl, among other things.  And then it was time to strip a certain little boy down for cake.

Before singing to Hutt we had a special practice run for Auntie Kira, who was celebrating her birthday on Hutt's party day.

And then it was time to let him dig in. For Keaton's first birthday I ordered a special cake.  For Hutton's I decided to get the cake topper and coordinating cupcake toppers and make our own cake.  And a smash cake, all for Hutt.

About mid-way though his cake I looked up from next to his highchair and caught the sight of everyone here, helping us celebrate and I felt incredibly blessed. So, I grabbed my camera to snap a shot of the crowd.  Hutton had about 50 family and friends who came over to celebrate his 1st birthday. 

While Hutton enjoyed his cake, he liked sharing it even more.

Following cake we moved into the living room for gifts.

From the mantle I strung a photo banner of one picture from each month of his first year.  I got the idea from Beth at I Should be Folding Laundry - who made one for her son's first birthday party.  It was super, super easy, all you need are your pictures, a hole bunch and some ribbon.  I included a sign in the middle that said "My First Year flew by..."

I have to admit, I ended up opening the majority of Hutton's gifts.  At one year, he just wasn't overly interested in it all and once he opened this ball it was all over.  Ball!  Ball. Ball.  That's all he wanted.  He got so many awesome gifts, balls, trucks, books, and some adorable clothes (Mama especially likes those) and while he might not have been too into opening them, he loves playing with them all now.

After gifts the kids each got an old-fashion glider and got to take a trip through the candy buffet.

While the festivities ended around 3 pm, we had people here celebrating until late into the night.  Which makes it perfect that this post and my thank yous are also coming so late (seriously, I'm only about 1/4 of the way through thank yous, but I am working on them.  Just....slowly.)

Many, many thanks to everyone who came out to help us celebrate, we so appreciate it and appreciate all of you.

A special thanks to our parents, who helped us clean and cook, Amanda, who came two days early to help me get the house in order and cook and bake, and Cas, who so graciously served as my photographer for the day.  The majority of the pictures in this post were taken by CaSondra Shim Photograpy.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

His Promise


I've had a lot weighing on my mind lately and a number of things and people I've been praying for.  Last night I walked outside with Keaton and saw this. 

A full rainbow.
A double rainbow, if you look closely.

It was so big I couldn't fit it in one frame, but it was so bright and so beautiful I had to capture all of it any way I could.

The sight of it almost instantly brought tears to my eyes.  My heart lightened and right then I felt like, everything is going to be okay. 

A rainbow in the Bible symbolizes the new covenant, His promise to us.

Today I received good news from three different people.

God is good.  Life is good.  If you have something weighing you down, I hope you will soon see your rainbow.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Proud Parenting Moments

Last night we were sitting at the dinner table and Keaton strategically placed his cloth napkin between us and said, "we share."  It was immediately after I'd taken a bite of my sandwich and had ketchup running down my hands (hey, I like ketchup) and so I picked that napkin up and said "Thanks, honey.  I will use that.  I have crap all over my hands."

As soon as the words came out of my mouth I cringed and looked a Collin, mouthing "I shouldn't have said that." 

I was expecting him to parrot it back immediately, but he didn't.  He took a bite of his sandwich and as he chewed we were dead silent, hanging on suspense.  Finally he picked up the napkin, rubbed his hands off on it and said "Tee use napkin too.  Tee has a lot of crap on my hands." 

This reminded me off a story from a few weeks ago, it was a Wednesday morning and we had plans which meant we needed to be out of the house at a very specific time.  I wheeled the highchair and booster seat into the kitchen so the boys would be right next to me during breakfast as I packed their bag.  I was filling snack cups for the ride and pulled out the sippies for water.  I unscrewed the first one and the plug that prevents the sippy from leaking was missing. 

God Damnit.  I said in my mind.  Who puts the sippy away not put back together??!!

Then I unscrewed sippy number two and the. exact. same. thing.

"What the fuck?"  I muttered.

Immediately, from two feet behind my I hear:

"Momma say, wha da fak?"

I know it's best not to make a big deal about this so very calmly and sweetly I say to him:

"Oh no.  No, we don't say that."

But as I turn around I see his eyes are big and he's slowly nodding his head in the affirmative.

"Yeah.  Momma say.  Wha. Da. Fak."

And all I can think is, well that's going to be terrific when he repeats it in public.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

apple week

These are the apples from our trees.  Unfortunately they had to be picked before they were quite ripe because our trees are still babies and the weight of these little guys was threatening to break the limbs.  But we've been enjoying them anyway.  Before they were picked the boys would eat them right off the trees.  Keaton, yanking one until it was free. Hutton, biting into it while it was still attached.  Since we picked them they have been in a box in the garage, taken out as snacks and waiting to be made into sauce or crisps. 

Today I'm taking the boys to Lapacek's Orchard to visit my friend and college roommate, Karma, and her family (including Kim!)  I plan to come home with loads more apples, some for eating and some for baking, along with some other goodies like squash and caramel apples and whatever else I find in their store. The rest of this week I plan to do a little apple-ing: coring, slicing, steaming, baking, saucing.  I can't wait.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

a weekend in the woods

Things we did this weekend:
*Had a Friday night fish fry with the bass and bluegill Papa Grizz caught in the lake
*Went on walks
*Got cranberries and craisins at Cranberry Fest.
* Went fishing
* Took a long nap
* Paddle boat rides!
* Played in the leaves and (pretend) cut down trees
* Had beer can chicken off the grill
* Watched the birds
* Read books

Things we did not do this weekend:
* Work on the boys' Halloween costumes
* Get a family picture in front of the Hodag
* Take the pictures posted above

We got up to the cabin for one last weekend before the boys close her up for the winter.  Nothing quite compares to a weekend in the woods.  It does wondrous things for your mind and soul.  Unfortunately this year it has made me way too relaxed, so much so that I haven't even taken the time to snap some pictures documenting our time up there.  The pictures above were all taken when we were up over Labor Day.  Now the trees are changing from green to yellows and brilliant reds.  While I wouldn't say it was peak color, by the time we left on Sunday it was getting close. The air is cooler now, the wind a little brisker.  You need sweatshirts and coats.  But the sun was shining and it felt so good on your skin.  It was a perfect fall weekend.

The Hodag is the symbol of Rhinelander and I had wanted to get a picture of us in front of the big statue when you come in to town each year.  I didn't get that shot this year, but over Labor Day a kind stranger took these off the boys outside of a restaurant downtown.  My phone (camera) had gone dead, so she took them and emailed them to me immediately.  People are good.

The only pictures I did get this weekend were of our paddle boat ride.  It's rare that we get a family picture, with all four of us, so though I didn't get out my camera as much as I should have, I am pleased with what I got.

Until next summer, Cabin. 
May you rest well this winter and be ready for our return in May. 
We know we'll be ready to see you.