2nd Birthday Bonanza

EH's second birthday party was SOOO much better than his first.  Besides the fact that he napped horribly on the day of his first bday party, I tried to do everything myself just to save money, which I know now is so terrifically stupid.  It is worth EVERY PENNY to spend the money to make the day less stressful and more enjoyable.  I would gladly spent a thousand dollars and relax than save a hundred and stress.  Oh how perspective changes in just a short year!

We started the day by sticking a candle in some cream cheese and trying to teach him how to blow it out.  He found this to be great fun - and he was actually successful a few times - but after he grabbed the candle and got hot wax on his hand, we decided it was enough practice. 

This year's party included many more little kids than last year, so as a party favor we gave every child who attended a twisty straw cup, like the one you see in EH's wheelbarrow below.  We also got out all of the fun outdoor toys that we owned, so that there was plenty for all of the kids to do. 

The swing set was a huge hit with everyone.  The day had started out overcast and slightly rainy and we were worried that we were going to have to shift the entire party indoors or into the garage, which is definitely NOT the ideal scenario.  Fortunately the weather cleared up, the sun was behind the trees by the time people started arriving, and the low humidity meant that everyone was comfortable and happy!

For birthday cake I ordered an almond torte and gobs for the adults, and a little personal smash cake for EH.  I added the little dino figurine from Toy Story to make it a little more personal.  This year he didn't even try to smash the cake at all! So, I was able to cut it up into 4 pieces - EH got 1 and three of his friends got the other slices. 

When it came time to actually blow out the candles, our morning practice didn't do much good.  You can't tell from this picture, but he's actually trying really hard to blow those candles out.  He just didn't open his mouth in the right way to direct the air.  So during one of his blows, DH sent a gust of wind from behind and blew them out.

As expected, he loved his birthday cake.  And the novelty of the straw cups and the fact that I only put water in them meant that EH drank more water that day that he probably had in the entire month prior.

Then it was present time. I wasn't able to get many pictures because I was busy helping EH with opening, but let's just say that he got LOTS of trucks, lots of games, and some cute clothes!  He had fun opening his gifts this year.

After that it was back outside for more fun.  EH enjoyed his new dump truck by sitting down in the middle of the corn hole game and declaring "It's my birthday and I'll do what I want!" 

We let him have his day.....

He stayed up until 9:30 p.m. - an all-time latest record since he started sleeping through the night.  He did sleep in some the next day, but not enough to make up for the late bedroom, so it took another day or so to get him back on schedule. 

But all in all, it was totally worth it.  Worth every penny spent and every minute of cranky toddler the next day (which wasn't much, honestly.)

I can only hope that his future birthday parties are just as enjoyable!

Be Good, Be Safe, Have Fun Run blog post

As some of you might know, DH's family is planning and hosting a 5K Fun Run/Walk in November in memory of his mom, Cathy Hartman.  It's called the "Be Good, Be Safe, Have Fun Run."

In an effort to raise awareness for the event and donations for their chosen charity, they've set up a blog where people post memories or stories about Cathy, and then ask readers to support them as runners. 

I've written a post, and mine will be going up in the next couple of weeks, at which time I will surely post about this event again, and even shamelessly ask you to support me in making a small donation. 


But today is DH's day, and in many ways, I think it's even more important to support him and his brothers in their fundraising efforts.  So I promise that if you decide to support DH as a runner instead of me, I won't hold it against you.  In fact, I consider any donations made to either DH or I a donation to both of us as a team.

Click here to be redirected to DH's post on the Be Good, Be Safe, Have Fun website.  Read his post, wipe away your tears, and then go back and read the ones that have already been posted.  Then, be sure to come back in a couple of weeks to read all of the news one that are up (there are only a few there right now.) 

In case you need motivation to click over to the site, here's a little snippet from his post:

What do you do when your Mom dies?

What do you do when the most relentlessly positive force – who had been there for you throughout your whole life – loses a long and draining battle to cancer at the age of 63? When she was the parent you called every single day for your entire adult life, not out of obligation or immaturity, but because she was someone worth talking to, because she had stories to share, advice to give, and oodles of support for everything you attempted?

What do you do when you hold your Mom’s hand as she dies in a hospital bed, and blink to find that it’s 10 days later, and you are holding your wife’s hand as she gives birth in a hospital bed, to a perfect first grandchild your Mom couldn’t wait to meet?

What do you do when a newborn’s tears are flowing before yours have even begun to dry?


Please go and read the rest, and consider making a donation if you are able.  Any amount, no matter how small, will help a charity that supports children who are mourning the loss of a parent.  It's a good cause - I promise.

He's 2!

August is a bad time to have a baby for someone who works in higher ed.  August means long nights, weekend hours, and not much time to celebrate a birthday party!  We had a wonderful party, but I've been working so much that I haven't had time to post a single picture!

He's 2.  TWO.  Can you believe it? I can't!

I have some posts started to recap his second birthday party (which went sooooo much better than his first, for a thousand reasons I'll outline in a post soon, I promise!)