Thursday, October 30, 2014

Milk and Cookies Party!

We threw a milk and cookies party to celebrate Eisley turning 2 and to introduce baby Sheppard to our friends and family. This was such a fun party to plan. I told myself that I would keep it simple...and I think I did pretty good, however, I kept getting so many ideas! It was a very busy morning setting up for the party, and I didn't get that many pictures. So many details didn't get photographed, and I am a little sad about that. However, it is always so rewarding seeing the ideas in my head come together in the end.

To keep the kids entertained I created four sensory bins. Eisley loves exploring sensory bins at home so I thought it would be a great way to give all the little ones something to do. The bins included, Dirt Dough with farm animals, Water Beads with cows and scoops (a crowd favorite), corn kernels with a little people barn, and Hot Coco Cloud Dough with tractors and more farm animals.

We had some great cookies, Annie (my sis-in-law) and I  made some yummy Oatmeal Pumpkin Chocolate Chip, and the best soft and chewy Chocolate Chip cookies, my Dad made and decorated some cute sugar cookies, and my mother-in-law made some amazing Rhubarb Cookies. We also had an assortment of Costco cookies just in case we ran out of the home made ones. 

We had white and chocolate milk to drink and we put them in cute little milk bottles. I made them from Starbucks frappuccino (poor Brian had got to drink a bunch so I could have the bottles). We also had soda, La Croix (we are obsessed), lemon lime water, and some adult beverages to enjoy.

My mom cooked up some snacks too, and thought of some great labels to fit with the "Farm Fresh" cookies and milk theme. Little sliders on pretzel rolls, labeled "cow". Cheese plate labeled "dairy", Pigs in a blanket, labeled "pig", veggies on a stick to look like a garden, and home made chex mix, labeled "chicken feed." We had a basket of apples and tangerines to enjoy too!

We kept the decor pretty simple, just black and white. I tired to stick with a "Farm Fresh" milk and cookies theme. I used galvanized buckets, little cow figurines, and some cookie jars to decorate the tables with. My dad made a "2" and a "0" out out of cardboard and my mom decoupaged black and white polka dots all over them. My friend found an amazing cow painting and we put hay bales out for some seating. we hung cookie cutters from the pergola it was so whimsical and fun. I also printed off some of my favorite pictures of both Sheppard and Eisley and hung them around. Annie got some black and white balloons and a huge cow balloon that was a hit with all the little ones. 

Eisley was nervous at first with all the people, but after a few hugs from Nana and other grandparents she was ready to play, eat cookies, drink chocolate milk and open presents! She and Shep got so many wonderful and thoughtful gifts, from books, handmade blankets, pillows, aprons, a play kitchen, clothes, and a singing Elsa doll! We are so thankful for our wonderful friends and family and their generosity towards us.

Sheppard was so excited to meet a lot of his extended family for the first time. He wore a cute little shirt painted by his Grucle (Uncle Randall) that said, "hello i'm new here." He did great, and slept most of the party, except when he wanted his own milk and cookies, hold the cookies :)

Thanks again to everyone that helped us celebrate our babies!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Dear Sheppard...One Month.

Dear Sheppard,

One month has gone by since you quickly came into this world. This month went so incredibly fast, it is hard to believe that you have been here for that long. You fit perfectly into our little family and it is wonderful to have you here. We love you so much.

It has been fun getting to know you, your likes and dislikes. It is crazy to see how different you are from your sister, even from day one. Though you look a lot a like, your personalities are already noticeable different. This took me off guard, because the tricks and things that helped and worked with your sister, do not really work with you. It has been hard trying to figure out what makes you happy. You cry a lot, and the Dr. officially said you are a colicky baby.  Your cry is pretty funny though, you snort like a pig when you cry. I decided to try cutting dairy out of my diet to see if that will help, So far I have seen some improvements in your mood and digestive system, but you owe me kid...I seriously miss cheese. 

You love being held, and you really snuggle in close. I can't really complain because I love holding you close to my chest, listening to your soft quick breaths, and smelling your sweet little head as you sleep. Your MoMo says you smell like buttered popcorn, I think you just smell like new baby, which is a wonderful smell! However, there are sometimes that I really need to put you down to take care of things around the house or your wild sister. You loudly protest whenever this happens. We have tired to give you a pacifier and you are not so in to it, you will take it sometimes, but only on your terms, and if you are in the mood. I don't think we will push it too much.

You are really good at eating! You surpassed your birth weight a few days after you were born. The doctor even asked if you were on formula because it is rare for a breastfed baby to gain that much so quickly after birth. You knew how to eat right out of the gate...I guess you were born into the right family(ha ha). I think all the eating has made you strong, you can hold your head up and you lunge all around when we are holding you. 

So far your sister has been very sweet with you. She calls you "brudder" a lot. She loves to say "bless you Sheppard" when you sneeze and bring you a blanket or shush you when your crying. In the mornings we have all been reading a story from your Story Book Bible, and Eisley wants to make sure you can see the pictures...I think she will always be looking out for you. 

You have already gone out and done a lot of fun things--the balloon races, restaurants, craft stores, parks,candy dance festival and of course Target. You fit so perfectly into our little family, it is like you were always meant to be a part of us. You have given us a few little smiles, they might just be from gas, but I like to think you're just as happy to be with us are we are with you.