Hayes's First Fiesta: The Fiesta Details

We had Hayes’s First Fiesta at the historic home where Todd’s firm is located. They have some gorgeous grounds around the property and we held the party on the grounds. It was so green and so beautiful!

All the kids were able to just run around the whole time. It was so much fun watching them all play together! And the birthday boy was really happy!

My friend Rachel came to Columbia for the party and she took pictures for me! She did such a great job. Katie came, too, and they both ended up helping me finish setting up. So thankful they were there!

The dessert table had all of Hayes’s monthly pictures labeled with number labels from Sweet Birdie’s Nest, my go-to party goods girls! The “Fiesta” painting was done by Nat Kat Designs, the same talent behind the “Celebrate” painting we had at Hudson’s party. Natalie was so kind to do a painting for Hayes, too!

We had cupcakes, the smash cake, chocolatti cookies and Mexican wedding cookies. Oh my goodness! Everything was so yummy!

Cupcake toppers by Sweet Birdie’s Nest and cupcake wrappers are from Shop Sweet Lulu.

I used the same 12 buckets that I had from Hudson’s first birthday, but my mom and I covered them in colored paper napkins so we could get as much color as possible.

We made the yummy individual 7-layer dip cups from Pinterest. And I made the topiaries out of paper drink umbrellas. I filled the pots with dried black beans.

You can see the little cactus favors we gave to all of the guests. We found the cacti at Home Depot the day before the party. We wrapped the plastic pots in tissue paper and included the little “muchas gracias” tags from Sweet Birdie’s Nest.

The main food table included paper poms made out of paper napkins. We served a fajita bar from Moe’s. Moe’s delivers and is so easy to work with.

The little utensil wrappers and food tent labels were done by Sweet Birdie’s Nest. I love wrapping utensils while watching television late at night!

We had about six small pinatas around the yard. Todd filled them all with candy and small toys the night before. The pinatas hung really low so they were at eye level with the little kids. I think they liked them!

The adorable iced cookies were our other party favor. The wonderful folks at A Dozen Eggs came through for us again. The iced cacti, sombreros, and burro pinatas were so cute!

We had five round tables set up around the yard. They were covered in yellow paper table cloths and striped table cloths. We used a different color stripe table cloth on each of the five tables. I loved having so much color around the yard.

We topped the tables with vases of paper flowers. Each table also had a bowl of chips and some salsa.

We set up a little photo booth using a sheet hung on the outside of the house. Sweet Birdie’s Nest made the cute banner. I had about 6 large sombreros, some sticky mustaches, and maracas to use as props in the photo booth.

The fun “blog girls” that were there! Rachel, Megan, Katie, and Tiffany were so great to come celebrate the day!


Paper Goods (banner, cupcake toppers, stickers, favor tags, high chair banner, and favor sign): Sweet Birdie’s Nest

Invitations: Sarah from Life Sweet Life

Cupcake liners: Shop Sweet Lulu

Fabric for table cloths: Oil Cloth By The Yard

Poms: Made with paper napkins by my mom and me

Cookie Favors: A Dozen Eggs

Other cookies: Ally and Eloise

Paper fans: Party Express

Sombreros, Maracas, Papel Picado: Amazon.com

Hayes's Noggin

Thank you all so much for your comments, texts, tweets, emails, and phone calls yesterday. I could really feel them and so much of my worry was taken away. Todd and I have a fairly big decision to make, so thank you for your prayers.

Our sweet Hayes is healthy and wonderful, and we are so grateful. We have so much to be thankful for, and while this situation is a big thing in our lives, it may not seem like a big thing to someone outside of our family.

A few weeks ago at Hayes’s doctors appointment, his pediatrician told me that she wanted to refer us to Cranial Technologies for a consultation to see if Hayes needed to wear a doc band to correct his head shape.

This was something that I had been concerned about for the past few months. Hayes’s head is flat. And it’s really not just a little bit flat. It’s actually flat. Around the time he was 3 months old I noticed that his head was getting a little flat. And as time has gone on, our pediatrician has told us that she wasn’t concerned yet, but wanted to keep an eye on it each month at his appointments.

And as time has gone on, it just hasn’t improved. It’s not obvious when you look at him from the front, but the profile view makes it pretty obvious.

While Hayes can crawl now and he has been on all fours and sitting up for a few months now, his head still hasn’t rounded out at all on its own. When he’s awake, he’s not on his back at all. But when he’s asleep, he still sleeps flat on his back.

Tummy time “practice” never really phased Hayes. He would actually just lie down and doze off when I’d put him on his tummy on his mat. He’s just the most content kid.

When Hayes was 2.5 months old, he started rolling over. At this time, we stopped swaddling him and hoped he would start sleeping on his stomach. But he never did. He loves sleeping on his back (and sometimes his side) and is comfortable sleeping like that. We wish he would just flip on over and be a tummy sleeper.

The clinic we visited yesterday is in Charlotte, which is about 90 miles from our house. We chatted with a few friends who have gone through all of this to find out a little bit about what we could expect.

They took some photos of Hayes’s head from a few different angles so we could really get a good look at what his head looks like.

Mommies always see their babies as perfect. Seeing the pictures of Hayes taken at the clinic were pretty startling. It looked a lot worse than I’ve ever noticed before.

We saw the physical therapist and after watching Hayes and talking with us, she recommended the doc band treatment for 3-4 months. She said that he has Brachycephaly.

We are encouraged that the treatment can correct his head shape. And it’s actually a really light weight apparatus. It only weighs about 7 ounces, I think. So I don’t think it would really bother him all that much.

He would need to wear it 23 hours per day. And it’s imperative that he wear it while he naps, sleeps, and rides in the car seat.

But then the physical therapist told us that it’s up to us. This is our decision to make. She recommends he wear the doc band, but pointed out that if he doesn’t wear it he will still be healthy. This is an appearance issue. But he’s a boy and won’t have tons of hair to cover up his head shape and the doc band is more often recommended for boys because of that. She categorized Hayes’s head in the “moderate to severe” category.

So, the doc band is recommended. But he’ll be fine if he doesn’t wear it. It’s also really expensive and insurance rarely covers it. And the clinic is 90 miles away and treatment would require visits to the clinic every two weeks.

Then there’s the concern that your baby is “different” and will be wearing something that causes people to stare and ask questions. He’s just a baby and he’ll never know. And none of that matters, I know. But my mama heart breaks a little bit when I think that people may whisper about him.

The benefits of wearing the doc band definitely outweigh our concerns, worries, and the hefty price tag.

At this point, we’re waiting to hear back about the insurance situation and then we’ll decide based on the information we have.

Todd and I went back and forth about whether or not I should blog about this, but I’m hoping that I can connect with moms who have gone through this or who are going through this currently.

Has anyone been through this before?

I know that we would probably regret not going through with treatment, but I know we wouldn’t regret doing it for Hayes.

You Are My Sunshine baby shower!

This weekend, with 5 of my friends, I co-hosted a baby shower for a very dear friend.

We decided on a You Are My Sunshine theme for the shower. We focused on yellow and orange with touches of gray for the color scheme. She’s having a baby boy, so we wanted it to be boyish without being too dark.

I called on my friends at Sweet Birdie’s Nest to do the invitations, banner, party circles and cupcake toppers. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. They’re so good!

I started looking on Pinterest a few months ago for some inspiration and found a handful of things.

For the drink table, we had water garnished with oranges (which was really good) and my mom’s yummy banana and pineapple punch. That stuff is so addicting! The banner said “Allyson’s Little Sunshine.”

The board with the You Are My Sunshine lyrics came out of my guest bedroom.

We decided to keep the food pretty monochromatic. We were able to think of lots of food items that we could serve that fit the orange and yellow color scheme. We even had things that we thought of that we didn’t use.

We served Chick-fil-A chicken nuggets (one of Allyson’s favorites), fruit salad with banana, pineapple and oranges, a pineapple pretzel salad (and now we all want the recipe), pimiento cheese sandwiches, carrots and hummus, cupcakes and miniature cheesecake bites.

Outside, we decorated with fall items that we already had like pumpkins and mums. We also blew up a few balloons and used the ribbon wreath. I also had some pinwheels from Hudson’s first birthday party and we used those outside, too.

The other hostesses and the mama-to-be are very special friends of mine. We have a lot of pregnant friends right now and I love seeing all of these families grow. I can’t wait for Allyson’s little boy to make his arrival so we can all love on him!

I saw an idea on Hostess With the Mostess to do a fun, sunshine-themed playlist for the party. I used some of their suggestions and some other sunny songs that I like. The playlist ended up being really cheery and I have been listening to these songs a lot in the last couple of days.

This is the playlist we used for Allyson’s shower.

Details and Vendors

Serving Pieces: our personal collections, Anchor for Target, and Willow House

Cupcakes: Publix

Paper goodies: Sweet Birdie’s Nest

Food: Chick-fil-A and our kitchens

Punch Recipe: My mom and there’s a link here

Pinwheels: Hobby Lobby

Ribbon Wreath: Tutorial here

You Are My Sunshine artwork: Sugarboo Designs and Etsy seller Pretty Smitten Prints

battles and wars

Oh, life as a mom of a two-year-old. Is there anything more humbling? This post is not going to be pretty.

Lately, I’ve just been feeling like I’m failing. I know that a lot of moms feel this way. Or, gosh, I just hope a lot of moms feel this way. Not because I want every mom to struggle, but because I want to know that I’m not alone.

We have a very defiant, spirited, loving, intelligent, curious and strong-willed toddler on our hands. He is almost 28 months (not quite 2 1/2) and he knows a lot and asserts himself. He loves his mommy, I know that. And boy! Do I ever love him? But he also frustrates the fire out of me.

I feel like I am ¬†constantly walking this fine line between “together mommy” and “scary mommy.” He is constantly being corrected, redirected and disciplined. I don’t like popping him on the hand and I don’t like having to speak sternly to him. But both have to be done. Time-outs have to be used. But it’s when I reach that point of “scary mommy” and my voice escalates and I’m angry.

I thought to myself this morning, “Poor guy! He isn’t doing the “right” thing, but I can’t imagine being corrected–constantly, all day every day.”

The hard part is that I know that he knows what he’s doing. I know that he’s doing things just because I said not to do them. I know that he’s testing me. He’s smart.

Our daily battles are over silly things like when he climbs on, and breaks, the exersaucer. Or when he snatches a toy from his baby brother. Or when he throws his food from the high chair. Small things.

But my biggest fear is that one of two things will happen. He will either (a) remember me as the mom who constantly scolded him and turned into “scary mommy” or (b) win. I don’t want either of those things. I don’t want him to be in charge and I don’t want to lose myself to my impatience and anger.

My love for both of my children is overwhelming. It’s true that we correct them because we love them and want to protect them from hurting themselves, hurting others or getting into a habit of behaving badly.

This road between 2 and 3 years old is an exhausting road. I am flat out tired. I have two kids who sleep great and I actually sleep great. But I am so tired at the end of every day and I’m still tired when I wake up in the mornings.

I know that no one expects me to be a perfect mommy. I attended the first session of our church’s Mom’s Bible Study this morning and heard a very great point that my husband, my children nor God ¬†expect me to be perfect. And that also means that my children will not be perfect.

I know that just like everything with parenting, this is a season. But it’s a long season. It feels especially long when you are constantly questioning everything you’re doing. I do trust my instincts, but I also know that I get one chance. I know that turning to God in prayer is my biggest hope. And I’m also turning to Dr. Dobson. But I know that I know this precious boy better than anyone and that prayer can help me know how to parent him and know how to be a calm, loving and patient mommy.

I need to appreciate the teaching moments where I can teach him and where I can learn.

I’ve never been more humbled than I am during this time in my life. I love this precious boy for all that he is and all that he dreams of being. I want to protect him and create a safe home for him.

This struggle with obedience is tough. I want to embrace his strengths and work with him where he is challenged. He may win lots of little battles, but I am determined to win this war.

2 Peter 1:3

His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him

who called us by his own glory and goodness.

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