Monday, January 16, 2017

Robby's Winter ONEderland

Nope, nothing to do with Disney or running, but it is about our life and family! Robby turned ONE last week (ummm...can we just pause for a moment on THAT one???) and instead of heading down to WDW for marathon weekend, I was doing my own marathon of party planning for his first birthday party. Of course, just as the half marathon & kids races runners were disappointed when the weather foiled their perfect plans, we were too when a snow storm prevented most of our guests from coming to the party. We would have postponed, but Bill has been out of town almost every weekend and when it comes to Robby, Daddy trumps everyone else for being an essential attendant!

I'd been pinning ideas for months to make Robby's winter one-derland perfect! I couldn't be happier with how each and every detail came together to make the perfect party. This one was definitely a Pinterest WIN! Here are some of the details of the day:

Our living room:
We used some stuffed animals around the room, but the real centerpiece was our fireplace. It was decked out with balloons, a clothesline of Robby's monthly pictures, plus a few extra touches!

Robby's first piece of artwork was fun and easy! I used a hard canvas and taped off a number "1" with painter's tape. Then just squeezed some paint on the canvas and let him at it! Be sure to let each color dry before layering on a new color. I framed it using an inexpensive IKEA frame that matched the decor.

A fellow January mama, Melisa of The Printed Pug, created this chalkboard art just for our party. She also did our board for his half birthday. I love supporting other mamas!!! (You can check her out HERE)

I finished off the mantel with wooden letters from Michael's and some snowflake accents (super cheap ornaments from Wal-Mart). The pictures were just so fun to look back on, and now I actually have some printed pictures that I can hang in my office!

For our party favors, we made bags of s'mores. I set them up right at the front door using a few extra tables we had. All of the signs I made were done on PicMonkey (yes, using only the free elements) and framed with cheap IKEA frames. 2 graham crackers, 2 mini Hersheys, and 2 marshmallows in a cute treat bag was a perfect little "thank you for coming".

Our Dining Room:
Well, our empty house proved to work well for this party! We don't yet have a dining room set, so we set up Robby's high chair in the dining room, front and center, and put up some folding tables and chairs for guests. Our kitchen table and island also had seating. Who knew we wouldn't actually need all this room? Dumb snow!

For Robby's high chair, I intended to do more, but this time of year is tough, so I kept it simple. I hung some snow garland, cut out a free-hand '1' out of scrapbook paper and hung a few of those snowflake ornaments. I also made Robby's hat to match the outfit I bought him from Etsy (the prices for the hats were outrageous!). I got a dollar store hat (so I wouldn't have to free-hand it) and covered it in scrapbook paper. I added pom poms along the bottom with some hot glue. All that Disney costume construction came in handy!

As a backdrop, along with some balloons, I took some streamers and created a great background for pictures. I taped them along a curtain rod at the top, twisted, and taped them under the window-sill.

The Kitchen:
All of the food and drinks were in the kitchen. I kept everything themed and it all came out so great!!!

The Hot Cocoa Bar:

The Chili Bar:

Snacks and Appetizers:

Dessert: (I didn't get enough pictures of this spread! We had a bunch of desserts all themed out)

We made some Polar Punch more for looks than anything else (it was SWEET). Also, we labeled all the food with some snowball labels. They were super easy to make: cut off the bottom of a styrofoam ball and sliced a slit in the top. Then printed some labels on cardstock. Wish I had a better picture, but I didn't intend on blogging about his birthday. Whoops! Blogger fail!

To finish it off, here's a few shots of Robby digging into his cake. He loved it!!! A great tip I read online: get a cheap (I think ours was $1) plastic table cloth for under the high chair. It made clean-up a breeze!

Finally, this is a shot I just love to take: the aftermath of the smash! We have a close-up after we cut our wedding cake and now we can add this one into our collection. I love how it tells the story of the day!

Happy Birthday to my sweet little boy! I can't wait to see what the next year brings!!!

Sunday, January 8, 2017

A Post-Christmas Catch-up

Whew! It's January 8th and I finally feel like the holiday season has come to an end and real life can get started again. When I first had Robby, I felt bad for him having a birthday so close to the holidays. Now I just feel bad for me because this mom life is HARD with everything so close together.

Merry Christmas!
We spent Christmas at home in New York. Being that it was Robby's first Christmas and our first Christmas in our new home, it was super special and so much fun to be at home for it all. I hosted a huge Christmas eve meal (read: way too much food and now I'm paying for it) and we visited family locally on Christmas day.

Right after Christmas, we flew to California for holiday celebrations with Bill's family. It was so much fun to have babies around for Christmas. Totally changed the focus and I really can't wait for the next few years as they all get older and really into the spirit of the season. We also hosted a small birthday party for Robby and got to ring in the new year with our west coast family. It was a fun-filled trip, but short and very busy, which left little time for running or any exercise.

We arrived back in New York on New Years Day with a few days to clean up Christmas and get ready for Robby's first birthday party. Shockingly enough, it wasn't even Disney themed! His winter one-derland birthday was amazing, but unfortunately Mother Nature got in on the theme. Lots of our family and friends had to miss the party because of the snow.

Now, it's time to really clean up after all the parties, and no, I'm not just talking about my house! It's time to clean up the diet and exercise routine too. In all honesty, running has not been a huge priority and my heart misses it. Maybe that's good, because I'll be more motivated and it will most definitely be more enjoyable. So back at it I go, with all the others making health, fitness and weight loss a focus in January. Hope you all had a great holiday season!