Eva's Birthday Party - part one

Soooo, I finally got the pictures back from Eva's party a few weeks ago. I'm so glad that I had a friend take pictures for me, because that day was seriously a blur. I was so busy hosting and comforting a cranky child that I didn't reach for my camera once. I had a high school friend come and take pictures - she did a FABULOUS job! and to top it off, she didn't charge me a dime. Sometimes it truly is all about who you know.

This first post is dedicated to decor and theme. I'll follow up with post(s) on the food/dessert and activities.
Below is the invite that I had designed by Jenni from 9 designs. You'll remember this post, where I was super excited about winning a free design from her!

I knew I had to incorporate 'Diva' in the party/invite. Eva has such a strong personality and can be quite demanding at times. Almost from birth, she earned the nickname Eva the Diva. She also loves music, so we went with a jazzy/Diva theme. Jenni did a great job with the invite, and I think it was a perfect way to introduce the feel of the party to guests prior to that day. To save money, I actually sent them out via email. I also didn't want to print them at home because I didn't think they'd turn out too great on an inkjet printer. But I was pleasantly surprised that they looked fine (I printed a couple for my grandmas and one for a keepsake) I'll keep that in mind for next time.

Here is one of the table centerpieces:

In this post, I discussed alternatives to traditional poms. I love the way it turned out! I found the vase at Goodwill, and beneath it is a piece of scrapbook paper.

Here's the other centerpiece, with round flowers, as opposed to the pointy ones in the above picture.

Here's a full view of the table setup:

I wanted black & white in the table settings, but damask or printed paper plates can be pricey. To get around that I purchased black dessert plates and white dinner plates. This way, the leftovers can be used for future events as well. For a touch of yellow, I set out yellow forks at each setting.

The other full table setting:

This was above the food table:

That was the other use for the 'pom alternative'. I got the letter 'E' at Michael's in the $1 bin section.

Here is the monthly photos displayed at the party:

The purple fabric was purchased at Hobby Lobby in the scrap bin for around $1! I plan on using it to redecorate Eva's room when we move into our new apartment.

The birthday banner!

I created the letters in word (super easy!) printed them and cut them out. I then used the leftover cupcake wrappers as spacers. They are all hung together using fishing line that was taped to the wall.

And lastly, the favor bags:

I created the tags in word, using the birthday banner letters as a template. I printed them off, cut them out and then used double-sided tape to attach them to the bags. The bags were purchased at a party store in Texas. I should have gotten a picture of the contents, but they were mini instruments: a maraca, harmonica and horn. The kids loved them!

Coming up...the food and dessert tables and party activities!


Take It Off Mondays

Last week I said I'd buckle down so I could hit my goal. Well thanks to the fact that I'm packing all day and my husband is in the capstone of his training (resulting in 12-16 hour days) I have not worked out in over a week. I did manage to get out walking with Eva 3-4 times. That must have been enough, because this morning I weighed in at...

154.5 lbs

I hit goal #2! Now I will admit, I know that my home scale is a little 'off', so I'm probably closer to 156-157. But that's okay with me. I'm just happy to be in the 150s. And now, my goal is to become familiar with my inner athlete. I played organized sports all through high school and I miss the feeling of being really FIT. I actually enjoy pushing my body to its limit and doing hard workouts. I remember every year during the first week of basketball practice I enjoyed the next-day soreness that accompanied our conditioning. I am an athlete at heart. So now I hope to push my body because I like being muscular and able to jog upstairs without being winded. I doubt I'll keep doing the weekly check-in, but I will keep you posted on my athletic adventures!

Starting Weight: 167.5

Weight Loss this week: 2.5 lbs

Weight Loss to date: 13 lbs

Weight Left to lose: 0 lbs - YAY!

First goal: 7.5 lbs (REACHED 4/4/2011)

  • Reward: A new craft organization box - PURCHASED (I finally organized it all! Well, I'm packing up the apartment, so I couldn't put if off much longer!)

Second goal: 12.5 lbs (REACHED 5/23/2011)

  • Reward: A new bathing suit (I'll wait til we get to VA to get this)

Final goal: To fit a size 10 pant

  • Reward: A new outfit for my new bod ;)
Success: Continued loss this week

Set-Backs: Nada!

Exercise: Once we move I want to start P90X!


Take It Off Mondays

Yeah, yeah. I'm a day late. Big Woop.

In good news, I'm down to 157 - yay! So I'm buckling down this week. I really want to hit 155 next week. Once I hit that I want to start P90X, so I can work on toning up. Unfortunately, we're moving next week, so most likely I won't start until mid-June, once we're settled in the new place.

I did P90X a few years back, and got halfway through the program before losing steam. Even though I didn't finish, I did notice that I had firmed up and definitely felt stronger. I think I have renewed focus and now I'm determined to do the full 90 days!

Starting Weight: 167.5

Weight Loss this week: 1.5 lbs

Weight Loss to date: 10.5 lbs

Weight Left to lose: 2 lbs

First goal: 7.5 lbs (REACHED 4/4/2011)

  • Reward: A new craft organization box - PURCHASED (I guess I should get to the organizing, eh?)

Second goal: 12.5 lbs

  • Reward: A new bathing suit

Final goal: To fit a size 10 pant

  • Reward: A new outfit for my new bod ;)
Success: Continued loss this week

Set-Backs: Nada!

Exercise: I'm sooooooo close to my goal weight. I want to work out at least 4x a week. I've been doing cardio and weightlifting for my lower body. I think it's time to add upper-body exercises now.

Eva's First Year At a Glance

Since my 'Eva is One' post was so incredibly long, I thought I'd post this separate. I took pictures of Eva every 'monthly birthday' to capture her changes over this first year. I displayed them at her birthday party (I promise, I'll post pics soon!) but here they are for your viewing pleasure!

Here she was only one week old! Sigh. I want another one. (not right now, but eventually!)

One month:

Two months:

Three months:

Four months:

Five months:

Six months:

Seven months:

Eight months:

Nine months:

Ten months:

Eleven months:

One year old!!!


Catch-up #2 - Eva is one!

I'm still in shock. I can't quite believe that my baby is now a toddler. It's a little too much to take in. It is so cliche, but so true, that the time flies by. I really do feel like just yesterday we brought home this little snuggly newborn. Now we have a little girl with a growing personality. (including some major 'tude! I mean I've heard of the 'terrible twos', but what about the 'onerous ones'? Because my little missy has already thrown her share of mini-tantrums. I already fear the teenage years - but I digress...)

To celebrate her birthday, she had a fun-filled day with Momma.
Don't you love this little outfit?!

First we went to a MOMS club activity (and I forgot to take pictures, oops!). Then it was back home for naptime. For lunch we tried CiCi's Pizza Buffet (that was my first time there, and I was excited to try it - honestly, it's just okay)

Here's Eva at Cici's (waiting on Momma to give her some more pizza)

While we were there, these little girls came up to say hi. Then they left to play in the arcade with their mom. I was chatting with the dad and mentioned that it was Eva's birthday. He headed back to meet up with his family. On their way out, they stopped at our table to give Eva a toy. It was so sweet!

After lunch, we headed to the local mall. There's a kids play area there that we've been to before for MOMS club playdates. She enjoyed the opportunity to just crawl and walk around without Momma saying 'no' or 'leave that alone' or 'stop', lol.

We BRIEFLY stopped by the park, so she could enjoy the swing. It was honestly 100+ degrees that day, so we were there less than 10 minutes.

(cell pic)

When my husband came home we had dinner, then sang happy birthday and allowed Eva another shot at a cake smash. I wanted to film it, but my camera was almost dead, so I could only snap one pic.

Smash? - yes. Eat? - heck no!

Here's all the new things Eva Diva is up to this month:
  • Can stand on her own. And she's working on getting up from sitting to standing without pulling up on something or someone.
  • Waves hi and bye-bye.
  • FINALLY says 'Momma'! But considering her diva attitude, a lot of times she says it in a demanding way. Le sigh.
  • She repeats words. Now they usually don't sound right, but you can tell that she's trying to repeat what you just said to her.
  • Is very 'helpful' - tries to help me when putting on her clothes or strapping her into the carseat.
  • She's solidly on table food. Occasionally I give her baby purees, but she pretty much eats whatever we eat for breakfast lunch and dinner. Now the whole weaning thing...eh, I think that 'process' deserves it's own post
  • And I'm sure you're wondering...
  • YES, she is walking - somewhat. She took her first true independent, unassisted steps on Friday. So now she can do spurts of 4-7 steps before falling on her bum. Plus, since she's learning how to stand without pulling up, I'm sure within a couple weeks she'll have this whole 'walking' thing down pat.
Miss Thing had her one year checkup on Wednesday (2 days after her birthday - I just couldn't fathom subjecting her to shots on her day!) The doctor said she's developing well.

Here are her stats:

Height: 30 in (75% percentile)

Weight 24 lbs 5 oz (90% - although that's still big, from 1-6 months, she was off the charts. So this shows that she's not growing at the same rate)

I'm so so so so so so so thankful that God blessed me with this spunky, funny, cuddly, strong, acrobatic, talkative little diva. Now on to year #2!

P.S. Her birthday party was last Saturday. As soon as I have pics, I will devote a post to recap!


Y3W | Mother's Day Gift

In the infamous words of Al Pacino, "Say hello to my little friend!"

That's right my friends. My hubby bought me a brand-spanking new iPad 2 for my first Mother's Day. When I put in on my gift wish list, I honestly thought maybe by Christmas of this year I would be graced with this delicious work of art. But I, thankfully, was wrong.

When my husband picked us up from the airport on Sunday, he presented me with a card. And the card was so heartfelt, especially with the message he wrote inside. In that last line he informed me about the technological beauty I would soon be meeting. Unfortunately, they are currently on back-order, so it probably won't arrive on our doorstep until late next week at the earliest. But I am PUMPED to say the least.

I reserve the right to become that annoying person that is always connected to their gadget of choice. I mean come on, it IS an iPad after all ;)


Catch-up #1 - Take it off...Thursdays?

Ok, I know, I know. I have been very negligent about posting my weight-loss check-ins. But in my previous post, I explained why I've been MIA. So let's skip the apologies and just get to it ;)

(So I was thinking I only missed 2 weigh-ins, but apparently I missed THREE!)
Even though I was traveling, away from my home (meaning I was not grocery shopping or planning my meals), attending parties and baking for Eva's party, I managed to not only maintain my weight loss, but also lose a teeny bit. It might have something to do with the fact that I worked out the night before my Monday weigh-in, but either way, I'm happy to be at 158.5. While I was home, I got a lot of comments from friends and family about my new shape. I tend to be a modest person and sometimes it's hard for me to celebrate my accomplishments - I don't want to brag or lose humility. But I did stop and allow myself to accept their compliments. I think in the past I was so focused on my end weight-loss goal that I couldn't enjoy the small goals I reached along the way. Which in the end, I think, led me to get frustrated and not hold on to healthy lifestyle habits. And the funny thing is, in this week's episode of Biggest Loser, one of the contestants had the same 'ah-ha!' moment as me ;) So here it is at a glance:

Starting Weight: 167.5

Weight Loss this week, er, 3 weeks (oops!): 1.5 lbs

Weight Loss to date: 9 lbs

Weight Left to lose: 3.5 lbs

First goal: 7.5 lbs (REACHED 4/4/2011)

  • Reward: A new craft organization box - PURCHASED (I guess I should get to the organizing, eh?)

Second goal: 12.5 lbs

  • Reward: A new bathing suit

Final goal: To fit a size 10 pant

  • Reward: A new outfit for my new bod ;)
Success: Losing weight while technically on vacation!

Set-Backs: I didn't work out as much as I wanted in Ohio, but I've gotten back into my groove this week.

Exercise: I'm pretty close to my goal weight. I want to work out at least 4x a week. And walks with Eva will just be a bonus.

'It's been a long time, I shouldn't have left you...'

Two snaps for anyone that can name the song where I got the line for this post title ;)

Wow, so it's been about 10 days since I've posted. In the real world, not hearing from someone for 10 days isn't that bad. In the blogosphere that is almost like falling off the face of the earth.

I apologize for my absence.

In all fairness, last week I was preparing for Eva's birthday party, packing to return home to Texas, and preparing for Mother's Day and a friend's college graduation. It was a busy week to say the least.

And I would say things have slowed down since I got back Sunday, but no. We are moving cross-country in 2 weeks. So cue the mad dash to get all moving-related tasks complete (and since we are military, there are several other 'to-dos' on our list than the civilian crowd. sigh.)

To top it all off, a group of my sorority sisters and their significant others and their children are planning to come visit us in Virginia at the beginning of August. Which is great and I'm sooooo excited! But being the resident event planner of the group, as well as the 'official host' that weekend, I started working on an itinerary for everyone, so they can make travel arrangements.

Oh and somewhere in that madness, I think my baby celebrated her first birthday? Eeek.

So since I have so much to fill everyone in on, I'm going to split it up in several posts. And cue the brain dump of thoughts and activities over the past two weeks...


Mother's Day Wish List

Since Mother's Day is next week, I thought I'd put together a wish list fo what I'd love to get. Now, I understand that my child is barely a year old and probably won't be headed out to the stores to shop for me this week. BUT, everytime my birthday/Christmas/other occasion comes up and family/friends ask me what I want I can never think of anything. So really, I'm putting this list together as a resource should anyone want to buy me something. (hint, hint, husband ;)

iPod - because, it's 2011. It's just time.

iPad - I actually want this for business purposes. I would love to use it when meeting with vendors or clients, and I'm sure there are/will-soon-be plenty of event planning apps available.

Flip camera - I also want this for my business, but I won't tell you how I'd use it, because I've yet to see other event planners do want I plan to do.

Pedicure - I normally do my own feet because 1 - I'm cheap and 2 - I don't particularly like people to touch my feet. But I got one last year a week before I had Eva, because logistically I just couldn't do it! And I finally understood why people pay a professional. My feet were baby soft for weeks.

Victoria's Secret Gift card - once I'm done nursing (hopefully in the next few weeks!) I NEED to get new bras.

MAC gift card - I need new foundation. That stuff is NOT cheap.

That's it for now. But I may add to it if I think of more...