Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Curious George Party

This year we had a Curious George themed birthday party for Jackson's 2nd birthday, which I'm sure came as no surprise to those that know him. The party was much smaller than last year (I learned the hard way that our house cannot handle 40 people), but was equally as fun!


I made a simple garland, like last year, and hung some of my favorite pictures of Jackson from this year. I also made the yellow, red, and blue circle garland that is hanging from the ceiling (which was inspired by this blog). The wooden "2" was purchased at JoAnn Fabrics for a couple dollars- I just painted it to match the party colors and taped it to a frame that we moved from Jackson's room to the dining room for the party. Finally, I added some fresh flowers and colorful candies to the table. Easy!

The cake was made by the very, talented Katrina from Nicely Baked. She was in ECFE with Jackson and I and just started her own business. The cake really brought everything together. It was so cute I didn't want to cut it (but I'm glad that we did because it was also delicious)!

We kept the menu really simple this year, too. Here is what we served:
We also had some veggies and chips and dip. Of course, we had the cake for dessert (which was marble with buttercream frosting).


Thanks to everyone that came to help us celebrate Jackson's birthday!!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

24 Months!

Weight: 28 pounds (50%ile)
Height: 37 inches (97%ile)
Head: 19 inches (40%ile)
Where has the time gone my sweet boy? It's hard to believe that two years ago today daddy and I were sitting in a hospital room holding you for the first time. (All five and a half pounds of you). It has been amazing to watch you learn so many new things this year and grow into such a happy and confident toddler. Daddy and I are so proud of you!
We had a pretty quiet day today. Daddy had to go out of town this afternoon, but he was able to spend the morning with us. We opened presents, had breakfast, and went to music class (where everyone sang Happy Birthday to you). The big celebration will be on Saturday!
Although you have just turned two, I think we are deep into "terrible two" behavior (at least I hope so because I don't know how much more I can handle). I hate to be negative on your birthday, but you have been a handful this month! I think this was partially due to the fact that you were pretty sick for the first half of the month. You had influenza, which triggered your breathing problems again, which led to an official diagnosis of asthma. While you were your sickest, you needed a nebulizer treatment every 4 hours. The doctor also added a steroid to your regimen, which doubled the treatment time from 6 to 12 minutes. This may not sound like a big difference, but it's torture for an active toddler. (Even one who is being bribed with television). It was a long couple of weeks, especially since you couldn't go to any of your classes or activities. You even had to miss your friend's birthday party!

Your transition from being home-bound back into the normal world was NOT a smooth one. I'm not sure if you just forgot how to behave around other kids (okay you probably haven't learned this yet at all) or you are just now delving into the "terrible twos." One morning, after you were feeling better, I decided to take you to Lifetime. I dropped you off at the kid area and told them which class I was going to be in. I set up my spot right by the exit because, more often than not, I get pulled out to tend to you for whatever reason. I was pleasantry surprised when that didn't happen. However, as soon as I left the class I could hear my name being called over the loud speaker. (You can't hear this over the loud music in the class studios so if they know you're in a class they will come up to get you). I immediately knew there had been a miscommunication and panicked. I ran down to get you and was told that they had been trying to find me because you were being aggressive. (That was a new one!) Apparently, you were pushing other little kids "unprovoked" AND you didn't "respond nice" when the teacher told you no. I'm not quite sure how they expected you to respond or what you actually did that wasn't nice, but I've been afraid to go back ever since (and I can feel it in my jeans). I kind-of blew this event off. I don't take you being aggressive with other kids lightly, but I know that a lot of kids go through this stage. Plus, I have to admit, it seemed like a stressful environment when I dropped you off. It was really busy, there were lots of screaming kids, and your favorite teacher wasn't there. This was a recipe for disaster and I should have known better. I realized, afterwards, that you were also still tired from being sick because as soon as we got into the car you fell asleep. When we got home, I set you on the bench so I could hang up my coat and when I came back into the kitchen (two minutes later) you had fallen back asleep.
At this point, I was feeling totally responsible for what happened. However, a few days later, we went to Edinborough Park and had another, more traumatizing, incident. This time, you were jumping in a bouncy house with a few other kids. All of a sudden you were on top of another little boy, hitting him. It all happened really quickly, but I didn't see him do anything to provoke you, except for maybe getting into your bubble. Before I had a chance to grab you, the mom of the boy you were hitting started screaming at you (right in your face). I quickly got in between you and her and swept you away (after quickly apologizing to her). It seems that every day I learn something new as a parent- new situations arise and different emotions present themselves. This day, I felt the strongest "mama bear" feelings I have ever felt. The more I thought about the situation, the more upset I became. I obviously felt horrible that you hit a child and made him cry, but I was also mad at myself for not saying anything to that other mother. I am pretty sure that her (extremely inappropriate) reaction was the result of her own motherly instincts, but she had absolutely no right to scold you (especially in such in out of control manner). She didn't even give me a chance step in. I was so shocked (and shaken up) by her response I didn't know what to say. I'm sorry for not sticking up for you, but believe me I'll be ready next time. (Let's hope here isn't a next time, though). Since then, we've had several social outings without any aggressive behavior, so we're on the right track! Go, Jackson!

Your antics amuse daddy and I on a daily basis. You really are a funny little kid. This month you have decided to call daddy and I by our first names. While it's pretty hilarious to hear you calling for Er-ca or John, we would much prefer you to call us mommy and daddy. You love walking around with my glasses on (upside down), playing hide-and-go-seek, tickling, and pretending you're a monster (however, you get really upset when anyone else is the monster). Anytime I take my eyes off you for a second you're into my lip gloss.
Earlier this week, you had your very first snow day. We got around 10 inches of snow overnight on Monday, so your Tuesday morning block time class was cancelled. Daddy got out of work a little early that afternoon and we took you sledding.
You only made it down the hill four times (twice with daddy and twice with me), before you were saying "no sled." We ventured over to the park and played in the snow cave for a little bit before heading home. It's safe to say that we have all had enough of winter. Bring on Spring!!
I'm sad to say that you lost another great-grandma this month. Daddy's grandma Barb passed away the day after Valentine's Day. She was such a sweet (and spunky) woman. We will miss her dearly, but I am so glad that you had the chance to meet her. She took the whole family out to celebrate everyone's birthdays throughout the year, at a restaurant of their choice. This was taken at the first birthday celebration dinner you attended when you were just a few weeks old. Rest in peace grandma Barb.

Finally, I've decided to do a questionnaire each year on your birthday. Since you can't really answer on your own this year, I will do my best to answer for you...
  • What makes you happy? hugs, blankie, bear, kisses from KG
  • What is your favorite animal? monkey
  • What is your favorite thing to eat? clementines
  • What is your least favorite thing to eat? you're not a very picky eater, but will randomly refuse to eat things that your normally like
  • What is your favorite thing to drink? milk (you also really like orange juice, but for some reason you call it apple juice)
  • What is your favorite thing to do? play with daddy, tinker with tools, play doctor, listen to music (while singing, dancing, and/or playing your drums)
  • What is your favorite TV show? Curious George (you also really like Sesame Street)
  • What is your favorite movie? Monsters, Inc.
  • What are you really good at? playing the drums
  • What is your favorite color? blue (this is a tough one, but it's the only color you know by name)
  • What is your favorite song? Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star (you request it every night before bed) and Hey, Ho by the Lumineers

  • Who is your best friend? Christopher
  • What do you and your mom do together? EVERYTHING
  • What do you and your dad do together? watch movies, get donuts on Saturday mornings
  • What is your favorite sport? football (you call it "game")
  • Where is your favorite place to go? the park (I would have said Edinborough Park before "the incident")
  • What is your favorite book? Baby Animals (you also love any Curious George book and Harry the Dirty Dog)
  • What do you want to be when you grow up? daddy (or a drummer)
  • Three words that best describe you: lovable, gregarious, curious
Happy 2nd birthday my sweet, darling boy! I am so lucky to be your mama. I can't wait to see what the next year has in store for you!
Love, Mom

P.S. This will be the last "monthly" post. I'll definitely continue to post about your adventures and milestones, just not on a specific schedule. Stay tuned for your second birthday party post... (Hint: it's a Curious George theme).

Saturday, March 2, 2013

February Monthly Challenge- Food

I am so excited to be involved in a monthly photography challenge with such a talented group of photographers. This month's challenge was food. I prefer to photograph people and was feeling stuck until, one Sunday morning, my husband decided to teach our son how to make Ebelskiver (traditional Danish pancakes). It's a recipe that he learned to make from his grandma and mom. Without this challenge, I probably wouldn't have taken pictures of this, but I'm so glad that I did. Jackson thinks daddy is the absolute coolest and I think that's apparent in these pictures.
Be sure to check out my link partner Jessica!
Check out the other talented photographers in the group: Ashley, Angie, Caristy, Angela, Maria, Gina, Anne-Lise, Courtney, Megan, Rebecca, Muriel, Sarah, Ana, and Pam