First Birthday

I can’t believe it.  I’m still getting used to being a mommy and raising a baby and all the responsibility involved.  You can’t be one already!  According to the world, being one makes you a toddler, but you’re still a baby in my eyes.  You have grown so much since we first brought you home from the hospital, and I have learned so much along the way, too.  I was emotional the night before your actual birthday because it reminded me of what I was feeling laying in that hospital room, waiting for your appearance.  I want the world for you, and so I might be a crazy, irrational, overprotective mama bear, but it’s because I love you beyond any love I’ve ever felt before.  So when it came time to celebrate your first birthday, I knew I didn’t want to do it alone here away from all our family.  I wanted you to be surrounded by people who love you on your special day.  So we paid $1500 for plane tickets to your daddy’s hometown.  Ouch.  That might be your last birthday surrounded by family who love you!

We flew in on a Tuesday and stayed at Cousin Teresa and Dan’s.  Grandma and Grandpa Erickson and all the Grabers came over for dinner.  It was a beautiful evening and made me miss home even more.  On Wednesday, we packed up, stopped at a party store, and then headed the rest of the way to your grandparents’ house, an hour away.  Daddy and I had a meeting with Pastor Anenson that afternoon, so you got to play with Grandma and Grandpa one on one.

Thursday was your birthday, so I documented just about every move you made.  The weather was not cooperating, but we did get to take you on the antique carousel and let you play on the swings at the park.  We sang Happy Birthday to you with a yummy strawberry shortcake.

Friday was more prepping for your birthday party.  Your daddy was concerned I was overdoing it, but I had been planning for months and wasn’t about to back down!  I’m glad I didn’t because I think it turned out well.  It’s difficult to plan and throw a party at someone else’s home, but it came together.  Also, we initially planned to have your party at the park, but it had been raining since the day we got there, and there was no way the playground would be dry, as well as we couldn’t count on the weather to cooperate.  We decided it was safest to have the party at Grandma and Grandpa’s.

On Saturday, we got you up and ready for your baptism.  It was very special and even though it was two hours past your nap time, you cooperated and let us take a ton of photos.  Afterward, you napped while we scrambled to finish setting up for the party.  You slept through the guests arriving, but woke up the moment I had a plate of food in my hand.  (You have a sixth sense about this!)  You played with your cousins and smiled at your guests.  By the time you finished your lunch, and it was time for cake, I think you were feeling a little overwhelmed.  You kind of smeared your cake around but weren’t much into eating it.  After a quick bath, you opened some gifts, played with balloons, and once we said goodbye to last of the guests, you went up for a nap.  There was a party at the Graber’s that evening, but we arrived late after you got up from your nap.

On Sunday, you napped through a humongous breakfast of pancakes, biscuits and gravy, bacon, and eggs made to order.  Uncle Eric, Aunt Amy, and half of the Graber clan joined us. Later, we took a walk with your cousins, and you rode on the carousel again.  Monday there were tornado sirens and severe storms, so we spent some time in Grandma and Grandpa’s basement and eating lunch in the dark. We played cards, and your daddy suggested the girls take part in a cake eating contest – something we may have to do every year!  Then Tuesday it was time to head home!

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