*This post has been sponsored by Minted, who we are so grateful for. Thank you Minted for helping us make our daughters day so very special. You are wonderful!*
Our little Zoë is turning 2 this week! Where did the time go? We had the BEST birthday party ever on Saturday. We were thrilled to have our family and friends join us to celebrate our little girls big day over at Sod Room. It’s our favorite spot; an eco-friendly indoor playspace in the South Loop of Chicago. The kids love it and the parents love it. It’s a beautiful space!
We were so excited to set everything up and see it all in it’s place. Our party decor was sponsored by the amazing people over at Minted – WE ABSOLUTELY LOVE THEM! We received so many compliments on their decorations. Everyone was a fan of Minted‘s design challenge winner Brooke Rochon’s, Girlie Cakes Design! Minted carries the most beautiful works of art from a community of independent artists, who have been chosen through monthly competitions. They have everything you need to make a birthday party special. You can even personalize your decor choice with your child’s photo and name. See more about our party decor picks from Minted > here.
Being that it was our second time throwing a birthday party, we felt like we were better prepared for the unplanned this time around. I woke up super early and got myself ready first. I felt pretty ahead of schedule until I opened our walk-in closet and found the balloons we had filled with helium the night before, had all wilted to the ground…agh! I stayed calm, kinda, and quickly woke Mike up out of stage 5 sleep. I quickly thought of Plan B: for Mike to head back to the store for more balloons and a tank of helium, because we were out (of course). He jumped to the task like a hero, texting me 15 minutes later that they were out of mint colored balloons and also out of helium…but he had a Plan C (miracle worker): to call our grocery store and see if they could make the magic happen for us. They did. They had 12 baby blue balloons ready for us to pick up, the closest thing to mint. I was grateful. Mike and my Aunt Janet ran into the store, money in hand to exchange for the balloons and yelled “you’re awesome!”, thanking them. Mike joked that he and Janet were flawless in their execution. They managed somehow to get everything safe inside the party room. My mom and I felt pretty strategic ourselves about getting the party girl ready on time – a miracle, lets leave it at that Everything was in it’s place and ready within the half hour before our guests arrived. **A BIG THANK YOU to Cynthia Valenciana; the owner of Sod Room, for helping us put up the decorations and later taking it back down.**
It was an amazing birthday party!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY ZOË! MOM & DAD LOVE YOU TO THE MOON AND BACK BABY GIRL!
*This post is in partnership with Minted, whose products we love. Thanks for reading and supporting the sponsors who make this blog possible!*
-Photos Taken by Mike & Myself. Photo editing done by me.
I asked Michael to take some pics with his iPhone last weekend on our pumpkin picking excursion. The result, a single moment captured of my pure joy and love for our daughter Zoë. “I love seeing you so happy”, he whispered when I looked up and caught him taking this pic. His eyes were smiling at me like he does.
God certainly has blessed us. This chapter in our lives are cherished beyond what I can express in this sweet blog of mine. I’ll do my best. I don’t want to misguide you all into thinking our lives are perfect with no imperfections – that would be false advertising and I’m not a fan of that. We are real people just like you. We have the same real challenges that come up in one’s life. But I don’t like to surround myself with negativity. I know better. As my mom would say, “you have to stay strong and rise above that”. You are who you allow yourself to be. I’m a glass half full kind of gal.
I believe in finding peace within one’s self. Finding that light within, as Unity teaches. It’s part of my faith and how I was raised…it’s me. I believe in reflecting the good and happiness in our heart outward so that others are inspired to be happy. The Power of Positive Thinking.
How does one deal with the things we can’t control? Life has a funny way of teaching us lessons, yet we still want to steer it ourselves. We can only control what we do, not another and surely not life itself. That’s not for us to do. None of us have all the answers, and it stunts the growth of that individual that think they do. We are meant to be free and flexible so that when things out of our control occur, we adapt and are able to welcome change. If life was meant to be tamed, it wouldn’t be a life at all.
These are the lessons you learn a great deal about when sharing your life in a marriage. It’s all about communication, which breaks down to: learning to listen to one another. Listen to each other and respect each others needs as individuals. Then together, find a way where it works. There are two people in a marriage, not one. This communication is between the two individuals and definitely not between the extended family members – leave them out of your bed. It’s between two people. The ones who exchanged the rings. Make sure you are seeing the individual for who they are and not who you want them to be. When you can do that…and it takes re-learning over and over – then WOW! That’s when you have two people who just get each other
1.// I’ve been enjoying staying up late reading food blogs lately. I wrote on my Facebook wall, “it’s like reading poetry – except you get hungry so it’s like awesome.” I had to share, I guess I think I’m clever lol. I seriously am very impressed by the food blogs out there. How a blogger captures the essence of a dish in a post is genius. I think they are the best bloggers around. I find myself hanging onto every word and every picture. I so enjoyed reading this post here by one of my favorites, Joy the Baker. Isn’t it true how food are memories. My family memories are all paired with dishes we ate. Everything about food is so incredibly good. It awakens our senses; captures our attention. A person who writes about food in a way where your mouth literally waters…is an artist. I also have a thing for movies based on chefs. My new absolute favorite movie is The Hundred – Foot Journey. Have you seen it? You must see it!!! It’s phenomenal. This film is filled with beautiful and colorful cinematography, capturing the art of cooking and the origin of its flavors. You’ll fall in love with the main character and the meals he prepares.
2.// Writing has always been a part of my life. I’ve kept journals from I could draw (the drawing told a story). My mother has kept them all. We went through a few of them once with Michael, it was a good laugh. I’ve always been reflective and deep. I also had more crushes on boys…my goodness! Had to write about how cute so and so was..lol! Romantic at heart, from the start. There’s only one man I crush on now – my husband. He is such a CUTIE
3.// Our daughter Zoë will be turning 2 this next week…my eyes just got teary. I’m not ready for our baby to turn 2, but I guess that’s not up to me. There’s a fun spirited bond the four of us have (I’m including the Pug in this number here). It’s special. Michael and I are already preparing ourselves for when she goes off to college. We’re traveling Europe. Our plan is to book our flight as she’s making arrangements to leave us (lol). We’ll take the train from country to country, snapping pictures for my memoir. That’s the plan anyway It’s a good one don’t you think?! Yea, she’s only turning 2…but time sure speeds up with kids, so it’s best to be prepared. I can not believe Zoë is turning 2…get the kleenex! I’m about to cry.
4.// I’ll leave you with my favorite discovery I’ve spotted recently, The American Blogger.