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Saturday, May 17, 2014

My Little Cricket Turns One

This is going to be an epically long post. There are just so many emotions and so much that happened today and so much JOY to share. I know my Little Cricket wont remember this day and I know we are going to have a big party next weekend with friends and family, but I still wanted to do something special.

My Little Cricket,

It has been one wonderful, glorious, difficult, messy, joyful, painful, fabulous year and I am so absolutely thrilled that we have both made it past this one year milestone. Your first birthday, and our first year of being parents. Some say that having a baby will test your marriage like it has never been tested… for us that wasn’t an issue. You dad and I are tried and true, the work and effort it took to bring you into the world and into our lives didn't phase us, you have only brought undeniable joy into our lives. If anything we are more focused, more driven, stronger and better than ever before because of you.

This morning I made you blueberry pancakes for the first time for you while daddy grated the carrots for your birthday smash quazi healthy carrot cake. I cannot wait until you get a little older and I can make all your favorites. Right now I figured since you love blueberries that some yummy pancakes would be perfect. I sat you in your chair and wrestled with you a bit to put on your little one year old celebration birthday hat. I don’t think the cone is your style because you really had a vendetta to get it off. Finally I cut up your pancakes and drizzled them with Agave syrup and that delicious sugar coma distracted you from trying to kill your hat. You gobbled those pancakes up gleefully not leaving an ounce of anything left on your tray… and then you played with the syrup. Seeing the world through the eyes of a child is so precious.

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After breakfast we headed to your room so we could attempt to open your presents. I slowly tore the paper, trying to entice you and it would have worked too if not for that damn bow. You got obsessed with the bow and then I got obsessed with the fact that I made a new mom rookie mistake. Between both of us getting distracted it took a good while before we were ready to try again to open the present. I managed to get you to rip off a bit a paper for a few moments and then your brain moved onto something else, the BOW. Finally we both managed to get the paper off, sort of together, but mostly I did it. I tossed the paper behind me to get it out of the way and you kind of just sat there and stared at the box, and then you looked at daddy and then looked at me. The box was kind of anticlimactic so you started to crawl behind me back toward the enticing crinkly, rip-able paper and I am sure the bow buried under there somewhere.

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Once I got rid of the paper, and the bow you finally got interested in the box. Daddy ripped it open and tumbled all the pieces out. Those pieces, it was official you were now interested. Daddy started to try to put the Radio Flyer push wagon together but you started helping… or un-helping, and then Mr. Rogue gave up and announced as he was putting everything back in the box that he would just put it together during nap time. Babies and small tools and screws don’t mix especially well.

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We moved on to the second of your three gifts. This time, with the much smaller package and the less awesome bow, you managed to do quite well. You opened up the present almost on your own, with only a little help from me, and Mr. Rogue even caught the super excited face you made when you saw what was inside. Books. You ADORE books.

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Your last present had to do with what we were going to do today. Originally we talked about going to San Diego for the weekend, go to the zoo or visit sea world. We even talked about Disney at one point as well. However with any of those options we would move you off your routine, and you would be held or strolled around for most of the time. In the end we scaled it back and decided to take you to the beach. Because all kids love sand. So for your last gift we got you two little pails and some rakes and shovels. A perfect gift for the beginning of summer.

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You took your morning nap and daddy put together your radio flyer. I got you ready for the beach and we let you play with your toy a little while I prepared to get the rest of our things ready to go. The second we gave you your toy you started walking behind it. I was so surprised. Sure you had seen other kids walk behind their toys but you have never done it on your own. You are going to LOVE this toy!



We headed down to Annenburg Beach House. They have a great canopied section of the beach where little ones can play that we headed too first. My Little Cricket still likes to eat the sand, until it gets in his mouth and then he remembers that it doesn’t taste very good. Hopefully a few more times and he will finally get the hint to stop eating it. But he had a ton of fun with his new toys, learning to scoop up the sand and put it back in his bucket. It was adorable. After playing in the sand we headed over to the water feature. I was really hoping that you would love it, but it was just kinda ok. I think the water was just too powerful for you yet. You did fine for about 5 minutes and then you were done. So we just hung out on the blanket and just chilled until you were ready to go home.

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When we got home it was time for your second nap, which gave me just enough time to set up the smash cake area. I took the bunting that I have been making for My Little Crickets birthday and put it on a blank wall (after I helped Mr. Rogue move some furniture out of the way). Then I set up our photography lights and got the cake ready. When you woke up it was time for you to get messy. You took some time to get used to the lights and then it took a bit to get you used to your hat again, and then it was ACTION time. We sang you a little happy birthday and then waited to see what you would do. At first you were hesitant, you kept looking up at me, but once you got your first taste of that sugar icing you dove right in. You were ONE MESSY BOY. It was perfect!

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For dinner I made you my favorite, the thing I always requested for my birthday dinner. Spaghetti with garlic toast. You loved it. We read your new books and then it was time for bed. Before I could blink you turned one.

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I try to look at your face and see who is hiding behind those eyes, who's hiding behind that smile. You have already changed so much in just a year. You and I we have grown together, around each other, through each other to the point where I don’t know sometimes where I begin and where you end. I smile because you smile and I know so much joy because you are simply here. I cannot help but go backwards and see how much you have changed. Mr. Rogue and I scrolling through thousands and thousands of photos, because I am crazy and I cannot stop with the photography. Your dad and I laughed in the beginning because you were just this unseeing little bloblette, and then around three months you got really chunky and then around seven to ten months you started to thin out and stretch like a piece of taffy. I hope that our second year together is as wild and incredible as the first. You keep me on my toes and keep me guessing and keep delighting me with these wonderful surprises. Love you my adorable little cherub.

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For a New Beginning

In out-of-the-way places of the heart,

Where your thoughts never think to wander,
This beginning has been quietly forming,
Waiting until you were ready to emerge.

For a long time it has watched your desire,
Feeling the emptiness growing inside you,
Noticing how you willed yourself on,
Still unable to leave what you had outgrown.

It watched you play with the seduction of safety
And the gray promises that sameness whispered,
Heard the waves of turmoil rise and relent,
Wondered would you always live like this.

Then the delight, when your courage kindled,
And out you stepped onto new ground,
Your eyes young again with energy and dream,
A path of plenitude opening before you.

Though your destination is not yet clear
You can trust the promise of this opening;
Unfurl yourself into the grace of beginning
That is at one with your life's desire.

Awaken your spirit to adventure;
Hold nothing back, learn to find ease in risk;
Soon you will be home in a new rhythm,
For your soul senses the world that awaits you.

- John O'Donohue

2 comments:

paul peggy zeus said...

What a wonderful happy fun filled 1st birthday you all had! from opening the presents to getting covered in cake! LOVED the videos! So many milestones today! Opening gifts, Eating pancakes and spaghetti, and sand, but most of all walking behind your new flyer wagon. Good job buddy!

Jennifer Arens said...

What a wonderful day to celebrate such an incredible lil one. Naturally, he is the most photogenic baby and his personality is already beaming bright colors, like his Mama. You're going to have a walker before you know it! I really like that Radio Flyer :)

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