Birthday Girl and Keeping Life Simple



turning two

Our little girl turned two last weekend and we celebrated with a party! Eleanor was very specific in requesting a pinata for the festivities (and cake and presents). I spotted this adorable number two at the grocery store (thanks for picking it up for us Gran and Papa!) and just had to get a picture of her with it. She's wearing a larger size of the dress I made for Amelia (which I had to bribe her with a piece of candy to wear) and her brother's crocs which she has commandeered--she's definitely a tomboy, through and through!

birthday 
cake

After spending an entire morning icing Skyler's cake last month, I decided to keep it simple with this strawberry cream cake from Martha Stewart. (I also love her recipe for key-lime pie!) I baked the cake the night before and got to try my hand at homemade whipped cream--it was yummy!

center of attention

Despite her anticipation of her big day,  Eleanor was a bit of a reluctant participant at the party. It took her a while before she decided she wanted to hit the pinata, and she didn't want to start opening her presents until her three-year-old brother made a show of opening them for her. I think she may be like her daddy, not quite comfortable with so much attention directed at her. 

gift time

Gift-opening is always a frenzy, but I was happy to see her take a minute to look more closely at the gift I made her. I found a tutorial for a fabric photo memory game in Alicia Paulson's Stitched in Time, and I was very happy with the results!  It took me forever to pick out and edit all the photos, but printing them and sewing them together was really easy. I used some of the scraps from my henny penny for the backing, and made a little drawstring bag to keep them in.


taking care of baby

She hasn't played with my gift too much yet, but she's loving her new baby doll from Grandma and Grandpa. She's been such a little mommy since Amelia arrived, we thought it was due time for her to have her own baby to take care of. I really hope to make it a tradition to give our children handmade gifts though; if anything, it's something I hope they'll appreciate more later.

My "making" time has greatly decreased lately, however. It can be frustrating having to drop things in the middle of a project (or eating or sleeping) more often, but I just keep reminding myself that this won't last forever and that I really should soak up each and every moment (except when the kids are all screaming of course!). 

I've been a mother of four for a month already and I'm feeling pretty comfortable with it. Of course there's still the wacky hormones (and hence moods) to deal with, but I can recognize them for what they are much more readily this go around. And although I may be jumping the gun in saying this, adding a fourth baby into the mix hasn't been much crazier than three. 

So, while this mama is a little more needed for the time being, I'm learning to be content with letting go and simplifying things a little. Which means focusing a little less on me and more on the baby and spending what time I can with the other little ones and my wonderful hubby. There are times in each of our lives that we have to just let go and be instead of trying to cram too much into our days. I hope that I can remember my own words and enjoy this stage during my journey in mamahood.

So, after simplifying things as much as a mother can with a party to throw, we had a wonderful time celebrating Eleanor's birthday and visiting with family and friends over the long weekend--I hope you all enjoyed your Labor Day weekend, and are keeping life simple, too!




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