Sunday, November 12, 2006

Marcie's First Birthday Party

Because we just had a huge shindig for Marcie, we opted to keep her first birthday party very small this year-- just our immediate families. I wasn't home on Jason's birthday, so the plan was to make lasagna for dinner (for the grown ups) and Dino-bite Chicken Nuggets for the boys.

The night before Marcie's birthday party, Casey went into the kitchen and located a nipple, which he put on Marcie's head like a party hat. She sat like that for a long time while he sang Happy Birthday to her. You can see Marcie and Casey both modeling the nipple-hat in these photos. Cracked us up.

The next day Marcie had Little Gym class and Casey had soccer. Then Marcie and I went grocery shopping-- on a hunt for mint chip no-sugar-added icecream (which we found). While the kids napped, I made lasagna. The thing about lasagna is that it's always so much better the second day-- when it sets really well. So I made the lasagna early in the day, hoping it would cool off and I could re-heat it for dinner. The lasagna was out of the oven around 2:30pm and we sat down to eat at 6pm. It worked pretty well.

Before everyone arrived, Jason rearranged the furniture in the area of our house which most people use as the living room-dining room combo. We have never had the money for a dining room set, so we've used that part of the area as a play area for Casey. But then when he got a cool train set from his birth family, we put that on the beat-up Ikea coffee table in the living room. He has a nice train table at his grandparents' house. The Ikea table seems okay for this purpose at our house. Anyway, once his trains were in the living room part of the space, there was no turning back. Now the area is a giant play room with scattered adult furniture throughout. . . Casey has a giant tub filled with beans and rice and macaroni that we let him climb in whenever he asks. It's a sensory tub, and those beans, etc. give Casey's body extra feedback. He is a bit of a sensory-seeking child, so this helps calm him down. He asked to climb in the tub just before Marcie's birthday party, which was to start at 5:30pm. So we let him. The photos are of Casey in his tub and of Marcie watching him play. (As a side note, one thing that makes me nervous about this tub-o-stuff is that it is small stuff that Marcie can choke on. Even though Casey knows not to throw it all over the place, some always ends up on the floor.)

After everyone arrived, we sat down to eat. I had already started feeding Marcie her baby food so that she could finger-feed herself during dinner. I gave her a sippy cup, too-- because we are supposed to give up the bottle after Wednesday (!). She mostly chewed on the cup's bottom. This is not going to be a fun transition . . . Anyway, here are some photos of our decorations for the party:This was the kitchen table all set up for the party. There is a center piece that says 1 Birthday Girl, and a candle that says "It's fun to be one." and the table cloth matched the centerpiece.

These are the decorations we put up while the kids were napping. You'll notice a couple of Thomas balloons mixed in there-- that's because our only child-guests were Joey and Casey and we thought they'd like those balloons.

This was the cake we actually ate. I picked a ladybug because in the Chinese adoption world, ladybugs are a symbol of good luck. Interestingly, this is an American phenomenon-- the Chinese do not consider ladybugs particularly lucky creatures or anything. But the cake is cute, regardless. We had a chocolate cake with bavarian cream filling. It wasn't as good as the Costco cake we had for Marcie's baptism, but it met our needs. And we didn't end up with so much left over that we will be eating cake from now until Christmas.

This was Marcie's cake. Our grocery store will make a first birthday cake for free when you purchase a regular cake. This is the cake we let Marcie smash up and eat. When Casey turned one, the store thought Casey was a girl's name, and they originally decorated it pretty much identical to this one. We had them change it to blue frosting, which was extremely difficult to clean out of clothing and off the high chair tray. Fortunately, pink is much easier to clean.

Here are some other photos of the evening:

Marcie wearing-- and removing-- her birthday hat, which says "Princess."

We sang happy birthday twice-- once outside with the Lotus candle-- this candle that is a lotus flower that opens and lets off a HUGE flame (so big that they warned we might have trouble getting too many of them through customs because they are considered fireworks!). The other one was a regular candle, and we did that inside because the video camera was accidentally on pause when we did the Lotus candle. Somehow I managed not to get photos of either rendition, so I'll have to borrow those from some of our other resident photographers. In any event, the photo above is Marcie eating her cake after the second song. The photo to the right is a Lotus candle-- I borrowed it from Cassidy Tao's birthday photos. I'm sure her parents won't mind. We traveled with them to China-- Cassidy and Jason share the same day for their birthdays!

Then, we opened presents. There were presents for everyone at the party! Marcie had gotten her aunts and grandparents one-year-old portraits and put them in frames. And she got Casey and Joey a Thomas set each with Terrence and a few other characters. Because Jason's birthday was on Monday and mine is on Wednesday, people brought us gifts, too.

My parents got Marcie the bounce and somethingorother Zebra. They did research to make sure Casey wouldn't break it. It's a good thing, too, because even though we got photos of Marcie riding it, Casey and Joey took turns for the rest of the evening:

After everyone left and we were trying to calm Marcie down for bed, Casey asked for a crayon. He grabbed an envelope, and then stood in front of the T.V., facing me and Jason. He kept calling out names-- "Daddy Soocoo. Here." Then he'd write on his envelope. "Mommy Soocoo. Here." Then he'd scribble again. "Joey Soocoo. Not here. At home." It took us about five minutes to figure out he was taking attendance and the "Soocoo" was his attempt at saying our last name. It was so funny.

1 comment:

Larry and Kyndra said...

Happy Birthday to you all! Marcie looks great in the pink hat and glad the candle pic came in handy. We were all so enthralled by the candle and trying to not burn down the hosue we forgot to sing Happy Birthday to Cassidy! Oh well, there is next year!
Kyn and Larry