Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Friday, February 24, 2012

Max's Birthday: Part II

Max's actual birthday was last Monday.  Dad took the day off work to spend the whole day with our birthday boy.  We had a picnic and even went fishing!  So how did we pull that off when it looked like this outside?

 First real snow of the winter. 

We had a few surprises in store for our big 2-year-old boy... 

When Max woke up we showed him his presents! 

Max got a magnet board (oil drip pan), big magnet letters, a fishing game with a fishy book called "You Be You",  a book about being thankful and a remote control car. 

I made these little fish out of his baby socks and some magnets.
Fishys swimming in the water.

Caught one!
Trying to get the hang of the remote control car.
I (Trader Joe's) fixed lunch and we let Max choose any room in the house to have a "picnic".  We laid down the blanket in Max's room.  I don't know why we don't eat like this more often.  It's actually easier to clean up!
Going in for more arugula.  Takes after his momma ;)
Mmm...and tomatoes.
Later, we fixed pizza for dinner.  Max really got into the process...

I love the way they they look at each other.

 However, we completely forgot to cook the dough first.  Or at least transfer it to the pizza stone prior to putting the toppings on.  I guess we were just so wrapped up in Max's happiness with the whole thing and forgot. So we ended up with this...
I tried to make it into a calzone, but even then it was tearing and falling apart so I just made a ball out of it, threw it on the stone and put it in the oven.  We called it pizza cake.  And it was (surprisingly) delicious.

Lastly, an update on the donation to the Ronald McDonald House.
Max's understanding was actually better than I thought it would be.  He knew we were taking items to children who had "owies".  He would hold up a toy or DVD from one of the donation bags and say "No Max's.  Get better owies!"  and then put the item back in the bag.  Which, for anyone who knows Max (or any 2 year old for that matter), the fact that he wasn't yelling "mine!" was a miracle in itself.  It warmed my heart.  He seemed to understand that someone else needed those things more than he did.  And that was priceless and one of my very favorite memories of his 2nd birthday.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Love, Sweet Love.

We had the loveliest little Love Day and the highlight of it all was having two of our favorite gals over for a sister Jennifer and niece Miss Annabelle.  
So much concentration.
More on that in just a moment...

Max started the day with strawberry milk and a heart shaped waffle with honey.

Also, I got the boys a couple little gifts...

For Sully:

For My Little Monster.
You Have the Key to My Heart.
For Max:
I Love You to {Puzzle} Pieces.
Perfect Pair.  I put fabric puff paint on the bottom to create treads. He slips and slides all over the wood floors and a lot of toddler socks don't come with grips on the bottom.

When will these boys be old enough to realize what a dork I am and/or care that I do these things for them?

Max just said, simply, "Socks, momma."

And I said "Yay, SOCKS!!!"

And then he just looked at me blankly.

So I said, "Max, you LOVE socks!" Trying my hardest to convince him.

But, really, he actually does love socks. He makes a big deal out of picking them out in the morning, making sure they match and then selecting a pair for Sullivan. I guess that was yesterday, though, because this day it was just "Momma...Socks..."

Sometimes a Momma just can't win.

But Sullivan gave me a huge, drooley smile and I imagined he was saying "Yeah, Mom, I AM your little monster!!" Aw, thanks bud.

Annabelle and Jennifer came over early so we didn't run into afternoon naps.  AB and Max exchanged Valentines.  Annabelle gave Max a bag of strawberry fruit snacks with a little shovel that said "I Dig You".  I would have gotten a picture of it, but Max wanted to open his Valentine and "dig in" immediately :)

Max gave Annabelle one of these...
He gave these out to his little classmates at Parents Day Out too.  Thank goodness for Pinterest ideas :)  Max was able to help peel the crayons and put them into the molds.
I made cupcakes (half brownie/half strawberry) and let the kiddos frost and decorate them. Lots of fun. Lots of mess. I turned my back for 2 seconds and Max had dumped an entire bottle of sprinkles on his cupcake.

We also made cards for the Dadas.  It was so cute to see them get busy with crayons, markers and stickers.  No pictures, though, because the activity required all hands on deck :)

All in all it was a great day. 

And I'm so lucky to have three handsome Valentines...

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Max's 2nd Birthday Carnival

Ok, so last year I said that over-the-top parties would only apply to first birthdays.  And I now have to shuffle my feet awkwardly and admit that...I lied.  I didn't mean to!  It's just that I LOVE parties.  I love the details and the memories they create.  That's really the best part...the memories and then having pictures of loved ones celebrating together that last forever.  I know Max is still too young to remember, but I hope he sees these photos and knows that 1) his momma put so much heart and thought into his birthday and 2)  he is surrounded by many people who adore him and want to be a part of his life.

Like every mom I wanted my baby's birthday to be perfect.  A well-rested, happy boy who is gracious to his guests, smiles for the camera and decor that does not fail.

*insert record scratch here*

The letters fell off my signs almost immediately (mental note: use wood glue next time), half of the cupcakes fell out of the ferris wheel baskets and Max politely told most of his guests "no, thanks." when they wanted a hug or even a high-five.  But he WAS extremely happy and excited to play with his cousins and be surrounded by everyone he loves.  He had a blast.  I finally got the cupcake situation worked out and at least I got a few pics prior to the signs falling apart.  It was such a fun and memorable party.  And that's what its all about.

Take a look at the memories we created...
These are just a few shots that were taken in my homemade photo booth :)  I had a poloroid camera so everyone could take home a silly photo as a souvenier.

Homemade fishy soaps.  So easy and probably a better option than live fish :)

Since Max's first birthday I had been trying to think of a way to incorporate a "Time Capsule" at his 2nd bday. Being a carnival theme, I thought a fortune teller angle would be a good way to tie it in. I want him to open this on his 18th birthday and read the notes from all the people who love and believe in him so much.  I hope it gives him confidence before he heads off to college and helps him to realize he can be whatever he wants to be.  No matter what he is loved.
Annabelle and Max playing Ring Toss.
Corn dogs, funnel cakes, popcorn, peanuts, cotton candy and just for a healthy option...fruit kabobs.

Cool guy on his new roadster. 
He LOVED having everyone sing to him.  He just looked around at all his guests with a very pleased look on his face.  And he blew out the candle in one breath!

Sullivan partied in his ferris wheel onesie.  He loves a theme just as much as his momma.
And a HUGE thank you to all of  our guests who brought items to donate to the Ronald McDonald House.  Max is really excited about dropping off our contribution soon.  He keeps pointing to the big stack of stuff and saying "Momma, kid's hospital?"  Max is such a lucky little guy.