Sunday, January 31, 2010

A Ladybug Birthday

I've mentioned before, but Abbi's nickname is Bug. Which is why she was a ladybug for Halloween, and why I'd been looking at ladybug cakes for months before her birthday. I knew I wanted to throw her a birthday party, and a ladybug birthday party was planned!

It wasn't anything big, just mostly family and a few friends over for cake and treats and to hang out. I got ambitious and decided to go with this cake design that I saw online, even though I don't really have much experience with fondant. It was actually much easier than I thought it was going to be. Probably because the top layer - the ladybug - is not even cake. It's a rice crispy treat. A little trick I learned from watching Food Network!! The black fondant was hard to work with, but everything else wasn't so bad.

The bottom cake was chocolate, then the round cake on top of that was white cake with a blackberry whipped cream filling. The outside of the cake was frosted with buttercream, then the fondant went on for the decorations. (To find out the recipes, check out my food blog.)

The ladybug on top was my favorite, although not perfect. But it was fun to do (although a little bit stressful!)
We also had ladybug cupcakes.

And chocolate dipped caramels.

Josh's mom also made some mini cakes, and there was candy galore. We definitely had plenty of food (and way too much left over!)

I'm so grateful that I was able to have so much family come. I kept telling everyone that I know that Abbi didn't really know what was going on, but I wanted an excuse to invite everyone over!

Abbi was a bit grouchy because she didn't have an afternoon nap, but I hope she still had fun. She got some great presents, and we will be getting her big present soon - a new carseat. I would say the party was a success!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Cake Smash!

I had been looking forward to Abbi's cake smash session for quite some time. I thought for sure she would dig right into her cake since she loves to eat so much. But I was wrong!! In fact, these pictures were taken at 2 different times! We put her down in front of the cake, and she was mostly just interested in the candle and the balloons. We couldn't even hardly get her to taste the cake or the frosting. She hates to have messy hands, so I think that threw her off. She ended up getting so grumpy, that we took her away and put her down for a nap. After the nap, she was much more agreeable. After tasting the cake myself and showing her that it was to eat, and then letting her lick frosting off my finger, she finally got it. She dug into the back of the cake, but still didn't really go for it. She ate some, made a bit of a mess, then decided she was done! But Max enjoyed trying to sneak in and get a few licks of the leftovers, and now every time Abbi sees cake, she wants some!

{Abbi-a-Day} Days 22-28

Loves to look out the window!

Doggy kisses

they love their daddy!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

12 Months

One year!! I really hadn't planned on doing a 12 month onesie - and just do a regular photo shoot instead - but Josh said I couldn't not do the 12 month shot! So here it is! It's getting harder and harder to do these every month, especially when the weather is yucky outside so I have to find somewhere inside to do them. And after struggling for a bit, we ended up on the yellow chair - again. There are lots of picture of her with the yellow chair, but she sure does like it!

At 12 months, Abbi:

  • weighs 21 lbs. 14 oz. and is 29 1/2 inches tall. She's still a little big for her age, but she has thinned out quite a bit. (Although you wouldn't be able to tell by looking at her!)
  • is walking!! She had been taking a step here and there for awhile, but started really walking exactly 1 week before her first birthday. And now she loves to walk!
  • loves stuffed animals. She loves to give them loves by hugging them and patting them on the back. It's the cutest thing to watch!

  • loves talking. Although she doesn't really have any recognizable words, she does love to try! She has said "nana" a few times (for banana) and is getting really close to saying "dog".
  • makes a sound for a dog and a bear. If you didn't know that's what she was doing, you probably wouldn't know, but I think it's the cutest thing!
  • knows where her ears and her nose are. She's better at pointing at anyone else's nose than her own, but she still knows!
  • loves to cuddle, especially when she is tired. She also loves to put her hand down my shirt, which is not good when we are in public! (not good for all of my now stretched out shirts, either...)

  • has discovered that it is fun to climb up on things. She can just about get onto the couch herself, which scared me to death!
  • loves bath time. Whenever I mention it to her, she gets so excited. I think the splashing is her favorite thing to do in the bath.
  • is a great eater. She'll mostly eat anything I give her, but she is still a bit picky with textures. Unless it is something that I am eating, then she doesn't care what it is - she wants it! Her favorites are goldfish crackers and bananas.
  • is only nursing 2 times a day - morning and night. She went through a week where she wanted to nurse constantly and was always crying for the pillow (which means she wants to nurse) but now we are down to only the 2 times every day.
  • still loves to read and spends time with her books every day. She especially loves books with flaps that she can lift up.
  • hates to have her arms covered. She won't let me cover her completely with a blanket, and she goes crazy if I bundle her in her towel after a bath. She doesn't even really like long sleeves, and will usually end up pushing her sleeves up her arms.
  • has decided that she hates her carseat. I'm sure she'll be so much happier when she goes forward facing!
  • loves toys, and has accumulated quite a few through Christmas and her birthday. And she likes to make a mess with them!
  • likes to get her way, and has started throwing tantrums when she doesn't get her way. We need to be careful with this little girl so that she doesn't get too spoiled!
  • loves Dora the Explorer and Mickey Mouse. I can't wait until we can go to Disneyland one day - I'm sure she will love it!
I'm still kind of freaking out that my baby is a little girl now. Time really does fly, and she has changed so much over these last 12 months. But I can't wait to see what the next 12 months bring!

Book #6 - Dear John

Dear John
Nicholas Sparks

I admit it - I'm a sucker for the books that get made into movies. I see the trailer for the movie, and all of a sudden, I want to read the book! I first saw the trailer for this movie a couple of months ago, and then when I saw it on tv a few weeks ago, I knew I wanted to read the book. I had to be put on the wait list, but a few days ago, the book was available.

This is the second Nicholas Sparks book I've read, but the first was years and years ago. I've seen several of the movies made from the books, and I really do love those movies. I knew this would be a tearjerker - not only from the movie preview, but because all of his books/movies have made me cry. This one was no exception!

This was an easy read - I read it in only a few days, but I can't decide how I really feel about it. I stayed up until 12:30 this morning to finish it, and when the last word was read, I closed the book, put it down, and said out loud that I hated that book. But I can't stop thinking about it now. So, I'm still on the fence...

Have you read this book? Share your feelings!

The Birthday Girl

Abbi's actual birthday was pretty low key. We were planning a party for the weekend, but we wanted to make sure we did something for her! Since her big present is going to be a new carseat - so exciting, I know - we decided to just get her a couple of new books. She was so excited and immediately wanted her daddy to read to her!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Happy 1st Birthday!

My dear baby girl,

Today you turn 1 year old. I remember this day last year like it was yesterday. For the months leading up to the day you came into this world, your daddy and I would wonder what you would look like and we couldn't wait to meet you. Then you arrived, and we wondered how we ever lived without you.

You sure have changed our lives. There are so many more smiles and so much more laughter since you came and joined our household. You have taught me so much about patience - and showed me that I have more of it than I could have imagined. You have taught me how to really cherish the little things. And above all, you have brought so much love into our house and our lives, and now I would never be able to live without that love.

Everyone always talks about how fast kids grow up, and now that you have turned 1, I can see exactly what they all are talking about. The time goes by much too quickly. As I look at you walking across the living room floor, I wonder if there is a way that I can freeze time so that I can enjoy you as my baby girl forever. But then I get excited thinking about all the things we will do together when you grow up. I can't wait for the first time you tell me that you love me. It's hard to watch you grow up, but it is so rewarding at the same time.

You have quite the personality, and it has been so fun watching it come out these past few months. You are such a happy girl, and everywhere we go, people notice. Every week at church, people will come up to me and remark about how happy you are. You love to smile for people and your laugh is contagious.

You love to snuggle and love to be held. You sleep well on your own at night, but during the day, you want your mommy to hold you while you take your naps. At first, I tried everything I could think of to get you to go down in your crib, but eventually I succumbed to letting you sleep in my arms. Now, I cherish that time with you every day, because I know that it will not last forever. Sometimes I read while holding you, and sometimes I nap right along with you. But always, I will take the time to look down at your sleepy face and marvel at how much I love you and how lucky and blessed I feel to have you here. I hope that you will always know that you are welcome in my arms.

I am so grateful that you are part of our family. I know that you will be a wonderful sister to any brothers and sisters that join our family in the future. I can already tell that about you. You love people, and I know you will be a friend to everyone.

I love you so much, baby girl. I hope you always know that and I will always do everything in my power to make sure that I show you that. It's a scary world out there, but you have a family that loves you and will always stand behind you and cheer you on in everything you strive to do. I can't wait to see the girl and the woman you turn into!

Happy birthday, Abbi!


your mama

(lots of pictures ahead of Abbi's 1 year photos.)