This weekend we held a taco-themed first birthday party for Gus. It reminded me that birthday parties are so. much. work. But it was so fun, and we’re so glad friends and family came out to celebrate! Everyone ate tacos and cookies and had a blast.
What went well: The amazing local taco cart from Luis Maravilla. This was pretty much the cornerstone of the party so it’s really good this worked out! Nothing got broken (that I know of). That’s good! We didn’t run out of anything, and I think everyone had fun. I know I did. The kids were wrecked after the party, and they had a great time. A huge plus about having a party is that you’re forced to clean your house and get little things done, like hanging things up, fixing up the yard, etc.
What did not go well: I labored over these cookies, y’all. I love making decorated sugar cookies a la Alison’s Cookie Party so overall I’m very happy with how these turned out. BUT I almost cried when I realized I forgot the ‘R’ in “Happy Birthday” after I had baked four batches of cookies and washed and put away all the baking stuff. I was ready to move on with my limited time. Then it got worse. I gave in and made a tiny cookie batch just for the ‘R,’ but the kids distracted me while it was in the oven and it burned. I used it anyway. After all that, I forgot to put the HAPPY BIRTHDAY GUS cookies out at the party! They’re still in a Pyrex on my counter. Ughhhhh. Anyway. The ones that did make it to the desert table were great. I also wish I would have decorated more, and that the Balloon Time helium tank I got would have worked! Taking that sucker back to Michael’s. I forgot to turn on the bubble machine I got nearly three years ago for Ruby’s party. I was finally going to use it at a party. I also just realized we forgot to play music. Oh well.
Without further ado, here are some select pictures from the party:
Yeah these didn’t make it out. On the plus side, I get to eat them all myself now. Except the burnt ‘R’. (Don’t look at it!)
Favors: Gus straw cups and maracas.
I don’t care if the tablecloth is wrinkled; I will never iron a tablecloth.
I borrowed these! Thanks, Jenny.
Ru and her beloved cousin Isa
Love these guys! Somehow we coordinated outfits. Ru and I wore vintage dresses and Gus wore a taco shirt from Target. I know at least three little boys with this shirt; it’s great. Nate is wearing… I don’t know.
Mom/Nana at the drink and side table. The margaritas were very popular… with me.
The real star of the show: the vintage Corona cooler that Nate’s parents brought us. It was full of Modelo, Corona, Mexican Cokes and Jarritos sodas.
I didn’t get any pictures of the tacos!! But they were delicious. Thanks, guys!
Obligatory monthly-photos-with-clothespins setup.
Showing Gus his cake! Pineapple cake from Ruby Bakery in Eagle Rock.
Ladies! My aunt, mom, and Nana.
Cousin Ella, Mom & Sam
Papa’s side of the family photo!
No, we’re not at Coachella, but baby parties are cool too, right?
Allyce and sister-in-law Julia.
Grandpa and Gus Gus
Waiting patiently for cake.
It’s Poukhan! (And Ryan and Ellis.)
Adorable fiesta invites from Etsy shop CherryBerryDesign.
Little did I know I was about 12 weeks pregnant on my birthday. I had gotten a Thai massage and had started drinking at noon.
Let me tell you a story that happened in late May of 2014. It all started with a sentence. “I think you should go pee on something,” my husband suggested as I was changing into my blue Bluth’s Banana Stand t-shirt for the night. Earlier I had been complaining about how I couldn’t seem to lose weight after the in-laws left a month ago. I had started being more active and eating somewhat healthier. But I didn’t think I needed to go pee on something. I didn’t have the typical pregnancy signs, only the ambiguous ones that in hindsight might seem obvious. Missed monthly visitor? She’d been finicky since I gave birth to my girl. Fatigue? I’m always tired, I’m a SAHM. Glowing? Never without bronzer. Hair? My hair has the ability to remain consistently flat and greasy. Weight gain? Yes, but my in-laws were with us for three months, they’re from the mid-west so most of our meals consisted of meat, potatoes, cream, liquified cheese, and butter. Cravings? I’m a terrible eater, I’ll satiate any craving, pregnant or not! Nausea? Never. The one thing that seemed a bit different was that I had the olfactory Spidey Sense. I would mention a funky stench in the house to my husband, but he couldn’t smell it. I just thought, ‘He’s a guy, they’re desensitized to most smells.’
A few days later I did pee on a stick. Lo and behold, double blue lines. I waited a few hours and peed on another stick. Double blue lines again. My husband came home while I was putting our daughter to sleep. I came out with the pee stick in my hand, “I’m pregnant.” He smiled, “How far along do you think you are?” I told him I couldn’t remember when I had my last period. Maybe February, perhaps March. April was fuzzy. I estimated that I must be about eight or nine weeks along.
Two weeks later we went to the OBGYN. The doctor does an ultrasound and starts off by saying, “Hmmmm, the baby has a big head.” My husband tells him “Bobbleheads run in the family.” The doctor measured the stomach and leg then says, “It looks like a 20 week baby in there and measures like one, too. I’m estimating the due date around the third week of October. Get ready, in four months you guys are going to have a baby.” Silence. I look at my husband and he’s Busey-ing. He looks at me; I automatically mirror his face. Now we’re both Busey-ing.
When we got home I neglected my first born to spend an hour Googling stories of how other women didn’t know they were pregnant until their second trimester. I wanted affirmation and validation. ‘See, this woman didn’t know she was six months pregnant and she’s studying biology on a graduate level!’ I started feeling good about myself. I told myself that it could have been worse, I could have been one of those ladies on TLC’s I Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant or found myself writing a confessional blog spot on XO Jane’s It Happened to Me, crying over my computer in the middle of the night reading nasty DISQUS comments. But thank goodness I caught it just in time.
When we started telling people, many would say “How did you not know you were pregnant?!” And I’d go through everything mentioned above. Then they would point out the positives like, “It’ll be great to have them so close in age so they could play with each other.” Or “It’s nice to get all the ‘having kids’ out of the way.” Or, my favorite, “Hey it’s awesome you skipped through the whole first trimester!” Yes it’s awesome but I didn’t “skip” through my first trimester, I still went through it – albeit rather obliviously, if not also rather recklessly (rock climbing, imbibing, caffeinating – to name just a few). Some of the people I have told are still incredulous about my not knowing. I’m still incredulous about my not knowing.
Now it’s been 18 months since Ellis came out of my vagina crying bloody murder. Luckily he was a big ol’ healthy baby and so far he seems “normal.” It was pretty insane to hastily add a new person to our bobblehead clan. Occasionally people ask if we want a third. I politely reply, f*ck no.