35 years. really!

today is my birthday. the big 3-5. i honestly don’t feel 35 (however that actually “feels” i’m not sure, i just know that i don’t). i remember waaaay back when i was fresh out of high school thinking that i had a pretty solid plan; get married to my high school crush and pop out a few kids by the time i was 25. there was no way i wanted to have kids later, because, who wanted to wait that long? and who wanted to be that old having a baby? well, i can tell you that things did not work out that way, and i am extremely grateful and beyond ecstatic about it. why you may ask? well, turns out that my high school “crush” (of almost 10 years of dating) ended up being a lying, cheating, manipulative and self-centered a-hole. i found out that the man i (used to) care about was not only sleeping around, but having full on relationships with other women. don’t ask me how he managed to do that, as i still can’t wrap my mind around it. looking back i suppose there were little things i could’ve picked up on but honestly, who wants to believe that the person they’re with isn’t who they thought they were? and, after being together for so long, you just sort of assume that this is how things are and that they aren’t going to change. boy was i wrong. and i’m sooooooo glad. it all seems like a soap-opera or a crazy movie plot when i think about it (or when i tell anyone the short-short version). that chapter of my life is over, and thrown in the trash! i can honestly say though that if i didn’t live the life i had, then i wouldn’t be who i am today or married now to the love-of-my-life.

i remember when my ex and i split up (or rather, when i dumped his slimy, pompous ass) thinking, oh my. for the first time in almost 10 years i was single. i had no commitments (except work). how was i supposed to do this thing called “dating”? how do you go about meeting someone when you’re in your late 20’s and you’ve never been on a real date in your life? i decided to avoid the whole thing for almost a year. i did whatever i wanted, whenever i wanted. it was amazing and liberating! i went out with a girlfriend and got belligerently drunk on a Monday night. just because i could; and i had a blast! then one day i thought, hmmm, maybe i would like to meet someone, but how do i go about that? i don’t want to go the pub and meet someone that way and i definitely don’t want to have my friends set me up with someone.

i was working full time at a newspaper and part time at a tanning salon so i didn’t have a ton of spare time but i met a few cute prospects. i contacted one of them and we went on a few dates and hung out a few times. then things got a little odd and we sort of stopped contacting each other (to be honest, he was a little quieter than i like, and didn’t exactly enjoy doing the things i did and he sort of lived in a small little world of his own). after that i met someone on myspace who lived just over an hour away from me. we went on a few dates and chatted online but i found out that he still lived with his parents (he was 35, I was 27) and he had a 15 year old daughter; 2 things that i really wasn’t overly comfortable with. plus the more we chatted, the more he would talk about “our future”; i’m sorry? what future is this you speak of? i gently broke things off and decided maybe i wasn’t really ready for the dating world. i mentioned this to a friend of mine and she suggested going online to a dating site. i snorted under my breath and thought, really? (mind you, this was back in 2007 when online dating wasn’t as popular or as common and “normal” as it is now – there are far more regular people out there looking for exactly the same thing that you are) … she said to me, listen, you don’t have to necessarily go on serious dates, just keep your options open, you never know what you’ll find. i decided to give it a whirl and signed up for a free account on lavalife. i added a few pics, updated my profile, let out a sigh and started browsing through the pics and profiles of potential datees.

i had a few men contact me right away; the majority of which were at least 10 years older, which i wasn’t thrilled about. i wanted to find someone closer to my own age, who had similar interests and who i could possibly see myself having a future with (crazy, right?). i finally had one person contact me and agreed to meet up for a drink at a local restaurant. after a few hours of chatting i could see that he was put off with how comfortable i was with myself and that i was the type of girl to speak my mind. we parted ways and that was that. a few hours and a few free drinks. harmless. but boring! urgh. back online i went.

i was only signed up with lavalife for a few weeks when i saw a pic of this pretty cute guy; ball cap, tattoos and a little scruff/beard. hmmm i thought. so i sent him a “smile”. he sent me a private message and we started chatting back and forth. i felt like a teenager with butterflies in my stomach as i typed messages to him and he wrote back right away. we got talking more and more and decided to add each other on messenger so that we could chat easier (and faster). we started talking about tattoos and he wanted to show me his sleeve (based on his scottish family heritage) so we added each other to Facebook. i didn’t think anything of it until down the road when he told me that my profile picture was one of me in a bar holding 3 different kinds of beer up to my lips. classy. he said he laughed and thought, that’s pretty awesome. (whew!). we planned to meet up and after maybe our fourth date we were lying in bed (just chatting! get your mind outta the gutter!) and he said to me, so where do you see this going? what do you want out of this? i replied, honestly, i want to be with someone who wants me for me. i don’t have time for bullshit. i just want to be happy; what do you want? he said, that’s perfect. exactly what i want. and from that point on we spent every day with each other and have now been together for (just under) 7 years and married for 3 of them. i didn’t ever think that i’d be 31 when i got married and 34 when i had my first baby. but to tell you the truth, i’ve never been happier or more comfortable. i don’t have to “try”.

one son, one hound dog and lots of laughs later, i can honestly say that i never imagined things could be this amazing, and this easy. in my 35 years on this earth i’ve never been happier. a successful, positive and happy relationship should be one where you don’t constantly need to go above and beyond to impress the person you’re with (whether it be dating, engaged, common-law or married). you should just be able to be YOU. no strings attached. nothing complicated. just easy.

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busy busy, fun fun.

as much as i love blogging (a.k.a. venting, mostly) life has been über busy lately. our little man will be 17 months old as of this weekend. holy crapola, where has the time gone?! i’ll tell you where; to late night nursing and cuddles, to walks with our hound dog, visits with friends and family, learning to sit up, crawling, standing, feeding himself, walking (and now running), talking, playing and learning. and the list goes on. it’s hard to remember what it felt like when he first came into our lives; a tiny little bundle of love; a little babe who it seemed would stay young and sweet forever. i didn’t realize how fast time truly goes by until i had a baby. i fondly remember sitting in the rocking chair in his room nursing him and just staring at those big, beautiful blue eyes (and ridiculously long lashes) and touching his amazingly soft skin. just sitting and cuddling on the couch not caring about anything but this perfect little man … but now, oh boy, now is different! good, but different. constantly running after him, wondering what he could possibly get into while i try run to the bathroom and pee as fast as humanly possible before those sweet little hands of his open the bathroom door and he peeks in to say “pee!”  … keeping up with the laundry, dishes and sweeping (urgh, the sweeping!) picktwo_parentingthat comes with owning a coonhound, not to mention the regular things around the house that need to get done, and that i’d like to get done (say, tidying the kitchen? bedroom? basement?). most of those things get left on the backburner until hubby gets home from work to help parent. which reminds me, i saw this awesome cartoon the other day that perfectly depicted how things are at our house right now (most of the time anyway) with a toddler on the loose … if you have young children you’ll understand why this is so great.

i really should be working on photobooks (for my awesome friends over at Renaissance Studios) and my freelance design right now (check out my facebook page here) while hubby puts the little guy to bed but, i felt the need to blog, vent, etc. i enjoy writing about our son and what’s going on in our lives. i plan to (one day, not sure how soon) print out my blogs and save them in a little notebook/binder etc so that i can look back and remember the good, the bad and the, sometimes, ugly. there are so many things i still want and plan to write about, like last week when our little guy pooped in his kiddie pool, not one, but two days in a row, and one of the days daddy wasn’t home to help clean up, good times i tell ya. about how he runs around the house yelling mom! mom! how he randomly will yell Da! daaaaaddy! while out grocery shopping (and his dad is not with us, but at work) and how he calls grandpa “bap ba” and grandma “mah ma”. how he hoots like an owl whenever he sees any bird (owl or otherwise). and how so many things you never imagined could be “dut” (stuck) or dirty or “dot” (hot).

and one day, i hope my son will read some of these ramblings and be able to get a sneak peek of how things were growing up, the good, the bad, and the, sometimes, ugly.

a day (sort-of) in the life of a stay-at-home mom

i have been tired lately, so tired. mentally drained. i love my son more than anything in the world (as i’m sure i’ve mentioned many times in my posts here) but being his mama (or just a mama in general) tires you out more than any job you’ll ever have. trust me. there are 168 hours in a week … subtract maybe 7 a day for sleeping (if you’re lucky) and that leaves you with 119 hours of being on the job. yup, the job of being a full-time parent. i’m not saying that those who go back to work after their maternity leave aren’t tired, but they don’t put in 119 plus hours per week with their children. it’s long days and (sometimes) even longer nights. my son relies on me pretty much 24/7, and as much as i’m ok with that arrangement, sometimes mama needs a break. even going to the bathroom with the door closed (i wish) or having the door closed and not having a little voice saying mama! mum! and banging away with a random toy would be a welcome change some days.

here’s my day today …

• woke up my son at 8:45am (if i let him sleep as long as he wants he won’t nap in the afternoon and sure as shit won’t go to bed on time, or willingly, or even at a decent hour)
• gave the little guy a bath
• got myself dressed, did my hair and makeup (somewhat) while hubby got the little guy dressed, bum changed etc
• changed the sheets on his bed as he soaked through everything last night
• fed him breakfast
• ate my own breakfast while getting him more to eat during my eating time
• checked email, Facebook and instagram
• paid a few bills
• washed his face and hands and highchair
• put him down to play for a little while
• kept him away from our dog and my parents’ dog ( a 100lb doberman who’s here for the week while they’re away) even though he was insistent on following them around and trying to whack them or bite them while squealing with excitement the entire time
• washed the dishes and all our new tupperware (oooooooh!)
• hubby took the little guy outside while he bbq’d up some lunch so i could finish tidying the kitchen
• swept the kitchen, dining room and living room floors
• brought my son inside and gave him some milk and a snack (his pre-naptime routine) in the kitchen while he played with toys and came back for more snacks, stopping continuously at the patio door to bang on it and yell at his dad who was outside trying to trim the dogs nails
• took him outside and cut his fingernails and toenails while his dad was outside
• brought him upstairs to change his bum and get him ready for a nap
• said bye to his dad and then rocked him to sleep, after fighting it for about 10 minutes, which he does everyday – laughing, playing with my hair, trying to pinch me, etc. good times.
• went down to the computer to finish up some design work on the winner of the free business card design contest that i held on Facebook after hitting 200 fans (woot woot! check out my page here), check emails, Facebook etc
• little man woke up after 30 mins instead of his usual 2 hour nap
• tried to console him and get him back to sleep … after 45 minutes and some tylenol (pretty sure he’s getting his molars so i thought maybe that was the trouble) he finally stopping whining and crying but didn’t go back to sleep
• brought him downstairs and cuddled with him while i finished up my design work for the contest winner
• back upstairs to give him a snack and drink
• swept the floor again (having 2 big dogs does not make for a nice clean floor – at least it’s only for one week!)
• let the dogs out for a pee
• packed up the kid (plus a drink & snack for him) and headed to the grocery store
• while at the grocery store he decided to play with the cinnamon buns in the cart (pillsbury ones, where you just pop the container and put ’em in the oven) … he always plays with the groceries so i didn’t think anything of it, (because it keeps him entertained, even though he has a drink and snack with him, the groceries are more interesting) until the lid popped off and 3 of the “rolls” flew out onto the floor. and of course there were no employees anywhere to be found.
• back home after an hour out and about
• gave the little guy a spoon and yogurt container to play with while i put the groceries away
• tried to keep him away from hitting and chasing the dogs around (again)
• let the dogs out, this time it was raining so i had to wipe their feet, backs, faces, etc to prevent big wet footprints and hair everywhere (mostly)
• stopped part way through putting groceries away to get the little guy started on dinner because he constantly was wanting to be picked up but it’s hard to put away groceries one-handed with an almost 25lb weight on your hip
• finishing putting away groceries
• ate my dinner that hubby made for me before he left for his afternoon shift (YAY!)
• gave little guy more to eat while i tidied up my dinner mess
• cleaned up his hands, face etc and set him down to play while i washed the dishes and swept again (sick of it yet? i know i am!)
• took my son upstairs to change his poopy bum and get his jammies on
• put on my comfy clothes and got the laundry ready to take down
• let the dogs out again
• watched cartoons with the little guy while he had his bedtime snack and we played
• put away his toys and took him up for his nighttime routine (teeth, playtime, bum change, stories, cuddles)
• after little man was asleep, brought the laundry downstairs
• had a little snack
• started the cloth diaper laundry and sat down at the computer to type this, check email, and do some photo book design work (for Renaissance Studios, check them out here!) etc etc

now i’ll wait for my hubby to get home in approximately half an hour when i’ll be exhausted but still plugging away. i turned on the ball game in the background for some noise (and well, i like watching the Blue Jays, what can i say) but now i hear that the washing machine stopped so back in i go to add the rest of the little guy’s clothes to finish washing up.

then i’ll sleep, wake up, and do it all again – with a few changes of course. gotta keep things interesting.

a little sickness here, a little sickness there

our little man has had a rough go this past week … last Monday he woke us up around just before 1am. i went into his room to console him and try to get him back to sleep but upon entering his room i saw that he was sitting up at the end of his crib looking rather sad and out of sorts. when i leaned in to help him lay back down i noticed he was warm, no, hot. really hot. and sweaty! i picked him up and my hubby came in to help change him out of his sweaty, wet jammies and a soaking wet diaper. he had a raging fever but our oh-so-helpful ear thermometer was reading that he had a normal temperature. everything in me said he didn’t. i know he had one. we gave him some tylenol to try to make him a little more comfortable and i sat down in his rocking chair to try to get him back to sleep. not even 5 minutes passed and i felt his little body heave and he got sick, all down my arm and onto the chair! i think it surprised both of us. hubby came in to help clean it up while i took the little guy into the bathroom to sit on the edge of the tub (just in case). thankfully we were in there because with his head back on my shoulder he was sick again. poor little dude. i’m sure he didn’t understand what was going on as this was the first time he ever really threw up (not counting little spit ups when he smaller and nursing). as i attempted to get him out of his sleepsack and second pair of wet jammies, he kept reaching and clinging to me. i tried to reassure him that everything was ok as i was stripping him down again. we gave him some advil this time (as i’m sure most of the tylenol came out but we didn’t want to pump him full of too much of one medicine) and tried sitting with him again. he passed out within 10 or so minutes and i sat with him for a while longer. i felt the tears welling up in my eyes as i held my little man and prayed for him to feel better soon. seeing him sick and confused tugs on my heartstrings. i decided to keep him home instead of going to toddler class on Tuesday morning as he awoke with a fever again (this time i used our other thermometer in his armpit) and he was out of sorts still. on Thursday morning he seemed to be back to his regular self but was starting to sneeze! by Friday he had a full blown, snot-out-your-nose-when-you-sneeze cold, accompanied by a dry cough. talk about not catching a break! thankfully the snot-face only lasted until early Sunday morning and he’s been on the mend since (whew!). he still has a dry cough every now and then but a little homeopathic cough syrup seems to be helping with that 🙂

dealing with a sick and sulky toddler is something that everyone should have to endure at some point in their life; just so that they know what it’s like to have a snot-faced little ball of cuteness clinging to them for 2 -3 days. you’re welcome.

frazzled, exhausted, and did i mention, tired?

it’s been a while since i’ve blogged, but i have some pretty good reasons (i think anyway). i’ve been keeping busy with a little freelance design work, wedding photobooks for photographer friends, and my son, who doesn’t want to sleep without my arms around him.

as i write this, my fingers, toes, and any other extremity that could possibly be crossed, are crossed, in hopes that my 15 month old son doesn’t awake from his slumber (as i watch him toss & turn on the video monitor). these past few months have been tiring for all of us. our awesome little sleeper has turned bedtime into something we’ve all come to dread (mostly). i used to look forward to the peaceful few hours that we had to ourselves, but now i start to worry in advance; how long will it take to get him to sleep? how long until he wakes up? will he wake up 2, 3, 6 times tonight? will he soak through everything and need a bed and bum change at the crack of stupid? will i fall back asleep? will my hubby have the mental and physical capacity to function properly at work without an adequate amount of zzz’s?

little man was always a great sleeper, right from the get go. yes, he was! i know people will say this about their child when it isn’t necessarily true, but he really was. around 6 weeks old he started to sleep in 6-7 hour bouts, wake to nurse and then fall back to sleep for 2-3 hours. it was pure bliss because i knew that when he finished nursing we could all get a little more shut eye. man, those were the days: stick a boob in the baby’s mouth, he was relaxed, full, content and wouldn’t you know it, sleepy. and then he started to grow, and change, and learn more and more each day. and he started to eat people food! not just his beloved breastmilk. around 8 months old (ish) he started waking at least once a night and wouldn’t go back to sleep without being rocked (insert very big thank you to my husband who has always taken his role as daddy very seriously and believes that i need breaks to keep my sanity! go hubby!). looking back, that wasn’t so bad. in fact, i’d take the once a night wakings if it meant that we could all get a little more sleep.

mid-march is when things started to go awry. the little guy went to sleep with his usual routine; jammies, snack and cartoons, then upstairs for teeth, bum change, sleep sack, stories and then cuddles in the rocking chair in his room until he fell into a peaceful slumber. and then he decided to wake up less than an hour later. we tried everything we could think of but no luck. he didn’t fall back asleep until the crack of stupid a.k.a. really super early in the morning, the time when usually you’re coming home from a fun night out of drinking and dancing, wait what? (see my post “sleep, what’s that again?”). basically things have been kinda off since then. the frustrating thing is he’s pretty good about going down for naps. we cuddle and rock in his room, he falls asleep and i lay him down, no complaints, no fuss, no crying. just sleep, usually for 1-3 hours.

over the past few weeks things escalated. he decided that he would not sleep at bedtime unless he was being held. this honestly came out of nowhere, or so it seemed. perhaps this was coming and we just didn’t realize it, i’m not sure. one Saturday the little guy decided to wake up every 2 hours and then stay awake for 1-2 hours. urgh. and at this point i have no liquid gold (a.k.a. breastmilk) to offer him, but boy, i wish i did. Sunday night was pretty much a repeat of Saturday. not fun.

my patience level was at 10% and quickly decreasing. i was ready to break. don’t get me wrong, i love spending all day with my son, but there comes a time, usually at the end of the day, that i need a little “mama” time and he was not co-operating.

i began reading books, articles and anything i could find in hopes that someone could give us a some guidance (and maybe teach me a little more patience) but the only things i kept finding were about letting my child cry it out (CIO). i am not a fan of this method. i have my reasons, which you may or may not agree with, to each their own. here are a few good articles to read 10 Alternatives to Crying It Out, Science Says: Excessive Crying Could Be Harmful, and ‘Cry it out’ isn’t more effective than ‘no cry’.

i finally found something helpful in The No Cry Sleep Solution book by Elizabeth Pantley. (buy it here). it was close to the end of the book (pages 207-213), for those of us parents, who are “at their wits end”, who are ready to snap and who really don’t want to use the CIO method. it didn’t solve our problems but shed a little light on the situation. i also found another great article or two online (and of course i can’t find them now to add links!) that talked about babies who were nursed and rocked at bedtime and a few different suggestions on how to get them to fall asleep on their own.

a lot of what i found was frustrating because they talked about creating a routine and sticking to it being one of the biggest things to establish. well, we have a routine. a damn good one if i do say so. and we’ve had a routine since little man was probably 4-6 months old (which we’ve changed as necessary as time goes by and his needs change). the articles & books that finally helped me to understand really what was going on basically explained that the reason our son may have decided he doesn’t want to be put down is that he only knows how to fall asleep by being held/nursed/cuddled etc. it made sense when i thought about it, and honestly, i don’t know why i didn’t think of it before! of course: 95% of his entire life he fell asleep in my arms (the other 5% belongs to his dad but it’s now closer to 70-30 as my hubby has been amazing with giving me “breaks” from mama duty). i started reading more about different ways to try to get my son to fall asleep on his own because this new “don’t you dare put me down” attitude was becoming mentally and physically exhausting for us.

we decided to try one method that suggested rocking him until he was drowsy but not quite out and then laying him down to fall asleep on his own in the crib. sitting beside his bed, letting him touch us, hug us, etc, whatever it took to make him feel comforted and know that mom & dad were still there for him and not leaving him when he felt he needed our “touch”, just not holding him. the first night took 3 hours to get him to bed. 3 HOURS. we put his glow worm beside him and the soothing sounds seemed to help lull him to sleep. and so we thought, ok! the glowworm might be the trick up our sleeve that we need to help little man fall asleep on his own! along came the next night … one hour till sleepy time! the third night, one again! when we first put him in the crib, he whined and cried but only for less than 5 minutes. as each night went by the crying and whining stopped! we thought we may have figured things out and then the 4th night came along: 2 hours to get him down. the same for the 5th and 6th, etc … he would start out very sleepy and relaxed in my arms, i’d lay him down and he’d immediately sit up and then stand up at the edge of the crib reaching for me. i ignored him and started the glow worm in hopes of distracting him. this worked, sort of. and then he’d play with the glow worm, then stand up. then play with Mr. Owl (his cute little owl/blankie toy). then lay down. and repeat.

i basically was fed up and starting reading again. reaching for something and then i thought, he’s so young. he just wants to be held. what on earth do i have to do that’s more important than cuddling with my son and making him feel relaxed, comfortable, safe and loved? i decided to forget everything i had read and try going back to a modified version of what i was doing before. i rocked my son until he fell asleep and when i laid him down in his crib he stayed asleep! i tried again the next night and he fussed when i transitioned him from my arms to his crib, so i started the glow worm and patted his back; he relaxed and passed out again. we’ve been going strong since (knock on wood).

my son needs me. he’s my baby. the most important thing in my life. he’s my world.  i’m his support, his lifeline, his comfort, his safety and most of all, his mama. this cuddle time will only last for so long and before i know it he won’t want to be rocked. he won’t want to have so many hugs and kisses. he won’t need me like he does now. i think we, as parents, need to stop wanting our kids to grow up so fast, because when they do, we’ll miss these days more than we realize. xo.

the mommy truth

no one ever talks about the ugly side of parenting. sure, we all love our kids. whether you have 1, 2, 3 or 7 (or however many you decided upon) you love your children, it’s a fact. BUT there are many, many, MANY times where we don’t like them, errrr, i mean, their behaviour. it’s true and yes, i said it. being a parent isn’t always easy. i know that my husband and i have many years of parenting ahead of us (being that our little guy is still pretty young) but no one can prepare you for the roller coaster of emotions that you will feel.

when they first arrive you are elated; overcome with joy, love, fear and pure bliss for the little person you have brought into this world. you can never imagine being angry, upset or frustrated with such a perfect little being. and then they start to grow. and move. and talk. and learn. all day, every day. i love my son, more than anything i ever thought i loved before. he’s the best thing that’s ever happened to me. he is my greatest accomplishment, my little teacher and tester of my patience and he just turned one in February! … but i never knew what true frustration was until i became a mother. sure, friends do stupid things, partners and siblings can be annoying but nothing can make the screaming banshee come alive like being a mother with sleep deprivation. every little thing starts to annoy you. you get to the point where you are ready to scream (and just might have to) and then tear someone’s head off (which you probably shouldn’t do). another thing that causes this is being with your child 24/7. every parent needs a break. whether it’s running to the grocery store, going for a drive or hiding out at a hotel and not telling anyone where you are (wouldn’t that be nice?).

i read an article today on the Huffington Post about kids and bedtime, and although my son is still young, it really hit home (read it here). one particular paragraph spoke to me, and i quote:

“One of the myriad problems with this parenting gig is that they save the hardest part for last. BEDTIME. Bedtime should be in the morning — when we’re fresh and kind and sweet — and decent parenting still seems like a very real possibility. But no, the hardest parts — dinner and baths and bedtime — arrive at the end of the day, when we have nothing left. When the truth is, we are counting the minutes. Counting the moments until no one is the boss of us anymore. Until we can sink into that couch, book, Internet or glass of wine — whatever our victory lap includes.”

OMG, this is so true! i have often said, why can’t our son be full of attitude and frustration and incessant whining during the day? why does it have to be when i’m exhausted and at my wit’s end and ready to just have a little me time? especially when my husband is on afternoon shift and the whole afternoon, evening and bedtime routine is mom-only.

more parents (new and old) need to talk about the reality of being just that, a parent. the times when you have to go into the bathroom and scream into a towel just to get the frustration out because there’s no one else to take over for you (yes, i did that today). the times when you say things you shouldn’t to your kids (whether they understand or not) and the times when you just sit and cry your eyes out because you are just SO tired. the times when you can’t imagine your life without them. when they make you prouder than you ever thought possible. when they make you feel like the most important person in the world.

no one has, or is, a perfect baby, toddler, child, teenager, young adult or adult. if they say so, they’re lying. every parent has gone through hard times, they just might not admit it. we need to start talking more about what frustrates us, what we’re going through, the good, the bad and the ugly. i think if that happened, we’d all feel a little more normal. whatever that is.

first birthday bonanza

sort of … it really wasn’t a bonanza, but still a party nonetheless. a small-ish party with our parents, siblings and a some friends; actually, about 22 people, which filled up our little living room pretty good. we didn’t want to do anything big and crazy for the little guy since he wouldn’t really understand what was going on anyway. his first birthday is on Thursday, but we’ll be going up north ice fishing (about 6 hours north of here) so we figured an early birthday soirée would do the trick. first my parents and my dad’s mother arrived, the little man was excited to see them. then my in-laws, then my sister and her boyfriend, my brother-in-law and his wife, etc etc. as each guest arrived i could see the look on the little guy’s face like, what are you doing here too? you’re never all here at the same time, what the heck? he would squeal and chatter with excitement upon seeing the faces of his favourite people. however, as afternoon progressed he had a few minor meltdowns, likely due to the fact that we woke him up in the morning rather than letting him wake himself (in order to squeeze a nap in before the party started). we sat down to open his gifts with him but after maybe 2, he wasn’t really interested. he would pull the tissue paper out of the gift bags but had no desire to open any wrapped gifts! haha he just continued to play with his toys, so i opened them up for him 🙂

after the gifts were done we decided it was time to give him a birthday cupcake! this would be his first time having a cupcake so we thought it would be pretty fun for him, well it wasn’t as we anticipated it to be. he doesn’t really like having things stuck to his hands so upon squishing the cupcake (with a little help from mom), he looked at his hand with a disgusted face but then put it up to his mouth and gobbled up a few remnants of cupcake. this went on for about 5 minutes (with my hubby recording the whole thing and people taking pics). he kept looking at everyone like, why are you all watching me? why is this thing sticking to my hands? waaahhh! we all chuckled and said how funny this will be down the road when we tell him his first birthday cupcake experience was a flop, lol.

camocupcakes

the cupcakes, however, were fantastic! if i do say so myself. my hubby  helped me stay up late Saturday night making them and then we got up early Sunday morning to put the icing on. i needed his help because i decided i wanted to make camoflague cupcakes for the little guy. yup, camo. green and white and light brown and dark brown. very time consuming but well worth the end result! with hubby being a hunter, as well as my father and father-in-law, it only seemed fitting. we used piping bags and mixed up separate bowls to add the colours to the cake batter and then each took two to squeeze them into the cake pan. then pretty much did the same thing with the icing (but just 3 colours) and squeezed it all into my icing dispenser thingy – that’s the technical term for it – so that we could make the icing match. voilá! i don’t know how often i’ll make these, as they took alot more effort and much more time than even the little mini hamburger cupcakes i made a few years ago for a friend’s 30th bday (which were a huge hit too). those were more like a little assembly line (with one worker, me)

hamburgercupcakes

overall, it was a nice get together for our little man, but i definitely understand why people choose to go outside their homes to have children’s parties. we only had 2 other kids at our house and that was plenty for me. we were all pooped once everyone left, and after cleaning up the  mess and rearranging the dining room & living room back to their usual tidy-ish states, we were even more tired. hubby and the little man went down to the basement to snooze while i finished tidying up even more. although i was exhausted, having a clean house makes me feel better. especially the kitchen, when it’s clean i just feel like, ahhh.

we’re going to try giving our son another cupcake, but on his actual birthday, and without the audience. we’ll see how he does. we might get the same results as yesterday, but who knows. either way it’ll make for some good pics!