Today, May 24, is our Samuel's first birthday. What a day! Really we've been celebrating all week. It began with his birthday party on Saturday. I started dreaming up his party when we were still in Kenya. I love planning parties. How could I resist a baby safari theme? I couldn't!
We kept everything fairly simple and just served cupcakes (the first I had made in months!) pretzels, fruit, and chocolates.
I've discovered my favorite thing when it comes to putting together a party with a theme - printable party packages! They are available all over Etsy, but as soon as I spotted this one, which included lots of personalization, I was set. Tania at Designs by Tania arranged the details and got back to me right away. Then all I had to do was print, cut, and assemble! I'm definitely doing printable packages again in the future.
Miss Maira Marie didn't want to wait to have a cupcake.
Auntie Becky was getting lots of kisses from our little man. He knows just how to share the love.
Our new buddy, Caleb, was able to join us for the party! Caleb is just a few months younger than Sam. I think the boys are going to need lots of fun play dates through the summer.
After we pulled her away from the cupcakes, Maira was focused on caring for Ella's baby doll. Such a good little mommy.
We learned after Ella's first birthday cake fiasco that the cake...and candles...must stay out of reach until they are ready to be touched. We sang, Ella blew out the candle, and then I set the cake in front of him. The boy dove right in.
Once Sam had devoured his cake and the rest of us had enjoyed our own little cakes, it was time for presents. Sam had the party thing down. He knew just what to do!
Our man got some adorable summer threads, a couple books, a few toys, and of course, a musical instrument from Uncle Jake. It's hard to say who was more excited about it - Ella or Sam. I think we've got a pair of young musicians in this house. Jake, when can you start lessons?
Nana and Papa Scott surprised the kids with their very own miniature chairs to match the two we already have. One of the first things we noticed when we moved into our house three years ago was that all of our neighbors down our side of the street had Adirondack chairs, so we jumped on board! Now Ella and Sammy can sit in style right beside us.
What a party! We had a great afternoon celebrating our Sammy with a little safari. Not quite like the one we experienced just a few months ago, but being in the north woods of Minnesota, it was just right.
Sam's party was on Saturday, but today is his real birthday. I set my alarm last night so I would wake up at midnight. I wanted to be able to cuddle my baby right at 12:06am, the moment he came into our world one year ago. I held him and rocked him and prayed over him. He has brought countless blessings to us in the last year, most of which we were not at all expecting. What a boy he is.
After sleeping the rest of the night, we all woke bright and early to attend a conference that Pete was giving at the hospital at 7am. We sat in the back row and ate breakfast while Daddy spoke. He was fantastic. Seriously, that man works harder than anyone I know. I am so proud of him.
How many people do you know who would actually enjoy attending a conference on colons first thing in the morning on their birthday? Clearly, this little guy had a great time.
The mama hen in action. She is very protective of her Sammy Sam.
Isn't he handsome? I claim him. Yay.
Immediately following the conference, I took Ella to preschool. As I was pulling into the parking lot, she asked if she could show Sam her school since it was his birthday. Why not? The three of us went into the school, checked out Ella's coat cubby, said hi to a few kids, and then we were invited into her classroom. The kids were so excited to have a baby visiting. When they found out it was his birthday, they insisted on singing to him. We all sat in a little bunch on the floor, each child played a little hand instrument, and we sang happy birthday. Not once. Twice. Sam was thrilled. And so was I. I really wanted today to be special, and that was an excellent addition.
After we picked Ella up from school, we stopped at the store so she could choose a birthday balloon for Sam. Then we headed to the playground. At long last, it's warm enough to play outside!
Sam's first swing session! Do you think he liked it? He kept watching his shadow on the rocks below with his tongue out to feel the breeze. Anytime there's a breeze the boy's got his tongue out. Maybe I should try doing the same. Maybe.
Big Sister loved swinging side by side.
When we returned home, the kids had special cupcakes and took long naps. It was a beautiful way to celebrate our Samuel's first birthday.
And such a beautiful boy he is.