Monthly Archives: July 2011

birthday bear: part two

Previously on birthday bear: Mommy cast aside parenting norms with reckless abandon and Daddy baked a cake. Moving on…

When your baby turns one you get asked a slew of standard questions, most of which fall under the umbrella of mixed feelings about the event, which I answered, hopefully clearly, in the previous post. But perhaps the most oft asked question is “What are you doing for your baby’s first birthday?” The first 32 or 40 times I was asked this question I responded (somewhat honestly) by saying that we hadn’t really discussed it much and weren’t sure yet. That was when we were still a good month or so out from Norah’s birthday. But as we drew closer to the big day, and as I both wearied of that question and began to feel the judgmental glare of disbelief from those asking (really?! it’s a week away and you don’t know what you’re doing yet?! you clearly suck as a mother and person), I began to respond the only way I know how when a) I don’t have a good answer and b) I don’t really care to give one…with sarcasm1 (yes, that’s a footnote and yes, you should read it). Random person: “What are you doing for Norah’s birthday?” Me: “We booked a couple mimes, a petting zoo and a bounce house. And Rihanna is making an appearance. Because she’s a good role model (whips and chains excite me).” But really, we had no intention of doing anything extreme or elaborate for our baby girl’s first birthday. Not because we don’t love her and not because we aren’t awesome parents (absurd), but because people who spend a bunch of time and money on throwing a big birthday bash for a baby are either crazy or rich, or in most cases both (example: The Real Housewives of Orange County). The kid is not going to remember it and I assure you he or she won’t hate you later in life because you don’t have embarrassing photos and videos of some obscene affair celebrating their first year of life.

So what did we do? We went down the road to G&G’s (Grams and Grandma) and had a nice, quiet, happy family gathering. We ate a yummy lunch, Norah opened presents and then it was finally time to taste that gorgeous, chocolate frosted yellow cake that Pete made.

Commence obligatory first-birthday cake-face photos in 3…2…1…

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Elderland out. XO.

1. Chances are that if you’re reading this post, you’re not one of the people that annoyed me nor are you one of the people I feared judgment from because if you’re reading this you’re probably someone I like a lot, and people I like a lot don’t fall into either of those categories. Also, it was nice to have people ask about her birthday. The people I like a lot. Comprende?


birthday bear: part one

On Sunday our little bear celebrated her first birthday! Now, before I dive in to the delights of the day, just one little side note: I’m not at all sad about Norah turning one. It’s not a bittersweet moment for me. I don’t wish I could turn back time. This past year has been an amazing, exciting and emotional adventure, possibly the best year of my life so far, but that doesn’t mean I want to do it all over again. Yes, it’s crazy that she’s already one, but sooooo much has happened and I think it all happened at the perfect pace and I’m really, really happy. We’re really, really happy. And we can’t wait for all the new adventures that await us. Yes, yes, yes one day when she’s a teenager and screaming that we’re ruining her life because we told her she can’t spend the night at her slutty friend’s house due to the general knowledge that said friend has been seen many a night at the Stumblin’ Pig, we may experience a bit of nostalgia for the days when all she wanted was for us to hold her and hug her and play with her. But for now, things are just as they should be.

So, enough of that. On her glorious first birthday, a most happy and wonderful day, Pete decided he was going to make her a cake. He’s a damn good baker, that hubs of mine. He spoils me with scratch made biscuits every week and makes the absolute greatest chocolate chip cookies. It’s a good thing too because my baking skills are nill. I cook. Cooking doesn’t require precise measuring. For someone so anal retentive, controlling and semi-OCD you’d think baking with all its necessary precision and accuracy would be right up my alley. Tis not. I’m just not any good and Pete is better than good, so I’ll let him handle the baking and I’ll handle the eating. Poor me.

Cake making snappies!

To be continued…

orlando and then some

The second stop of our Memorial Day road trip (yes, in May, that Memorial Day. yes, I am still writing about stuff from more than a month ago) was Orlando, FL, home of the lovely Caseys – my cousin Dana and her hubs Denny. Dana and I, just two months apart, grew up together and have always been more like sisters than cousins (I think that may have been part of my toast at her wedding, but the 5-6 glasses of champagne I slammed before hand in an attempt to make an otherwise terrifying moment somewhat calm have left that moment a leeeeeeetle fuzzy). Since parting post high school (I to Gainesville and eventually NC, and she to Orlando) we’ve done our best to visit frequently but of course with age comes more responsibility (for most of us) and with increased responsibility comes decreased ability to just jet off willy nilly to visit peeps in other lands. But the past year or so has seen much improvement in the cousinly visit rate. Dana came to see baby Norah last year when she was just an itty bitty little thing and pissed off as all get out (it seems we may have been starving her, oops), and then we went down to O-town in November for the Casey nuptials. And then we decided to take this road trip just 6 months after the wedding, AND THEN (no more and then!) guess what I found out while we were there?? The Double D might be moving to DC! That’s less than five hours away, people. Fact. Google map it.

In fact, I think she might be headed there as I type this very post! This is incredibly exciting. Not only am I so happy for Dana and her awesome new position with Lockheed and her exciting move to the big city, but I’m happy for us being a stone’s throw (with a strong arm) away. I haven’t been to DC since I was a kid, possibly not since the 5th grade safety patrol trip, and am super jazzed about heading up there to experience the city as an adult and now have much more of a reason to make that trip. Certainly they’ll have plenty of room for us in their one bedroom apartment (yay city life!), but really. We’ll make it work. Awesome sauce all around.

So, while we were in Orlando in May we had a kick ass time simply hanging out. We were so glad that D&D were on board with just chillin’ and didn’t feel the need to over-entertain us with activities. I mean, we did stuff, but not exhausting, over stimulating, away from the house all day, need a vacation from your vacation stuff. They made us dinner, we played four-player-simultaneous-Mario on the Wii (whoa!), we watched Family Guy Star Wars and we went out for latintastic Cuban food. We drank moderately and talked and did a P90X video (ouch) and watched Norah be her cute little self (not necessarily in that order). It was like a normal weekend at home, but not at home, and with two other awesome people. We loved it.

Only one teeny tiny little part of the visit was unpleasant and that was when Norah did a swan dive off their couch forehead first into their coffee table. I heard the boom from behind the closed door of our room where I was getting dressed and bolted to the living room like a bat out of hell to find a screaming baby with a quarter sized nodule jutting from the center of her forehead. She looked like something out of a sci-fi movie and it broke my heart. Pete and I both were clearly feeling worse than she was. We just couldn’t stand it for our little girl to be hurt and of course were in crazy, paranoid, first time parents mode wondering if she had a concussion or worse and needed to go to the hospital. Thankfully, D&D went to the store for us to get some tylenol and called Denny’s mom, a nurse, on the way. Norah was fine, mom and dad were (eventually) fine, and we got through our first big baby boo boo.

Bad me didn’t take any pictures while we were there, but Dana popped out her camera for a few last minute snappies before we hit the road. This one was my absolute favorite (even though I have that just woke up slash been hitting the pipe look in my eyes) mostly because it’s hilarious.

Elderland out. XO.