Photo Eye Candy Archive

Moments of Madelyn from the Last Few Months

by Alison Friedman in Marvelous Madelyn, Photo Eye Candy

I’ve slacked a little bit with blogging, so I’ll share some favorite photos from the last few weeks that have been living in my iPhone just dying to get out. They are either part of a bigger, more detailed post that is TBW (To Be Written) or they’re randoms that don’t really have a home, but are too cute to dump. So, this little nook of the Internet is where they shall live.

If there’s one thing I don’t understand, it’s how Madelyn can eat slimy, drippy foods and not have the instinct to want to wipe it away. It kills me! As she eats her yogurt, I want to take a napkin and go to town on her face. Doesn’t she feel that? Doesn’t it bug her? Kids are so weird.

Madelyn got her license!!

Just kidding. I had to put her down real quick while I moved some things in my car, so I stuck her in the driver’s seat. She really liked that. I did not have her chauffer me anywhere, but she did enjoy playing with the steering wheel.

We went to Denver (more on that later) and spent a day at a ski resort. It was Madelyn’s first time in the snow and was very confused by the whole thing. She was so good at walking through the snow in her new boots even though she was packed tight in her winter clothes. Since she didn’t totally hate it, I’m thinking ski lessons are a few years away.

I love this picture of Madelyn and her Grandpa “playing” chess. She likes to go to the chess table in Grandma and Grandpa’s house and rearrange all the pieces. I am never able to clean up after her because I don’t understand chess. I am really good, however, at checkers! Not the same thing?? Anyway, I love how they are both wearing their hoodies and jeans and playing so seriously. That’s what grandpas are for!

Madelyn spent a couple hours in the ER last month when she woke up at 4 a.m. with a 105 fever! Turns out she was suffering from a pretty bad double ear infection. She may have been running a super high fever, but she still took care of her baby at 4 a.m. just like I was taking care of mine. No sickness gets between a baby and her baby!

Madelyn was a flower girl again! Kevin and Lisa just got married on a beautiful, sunny day in April and Madelyn, decked out in a yellow dress, did such a good job walking down the aisle! I was so nervous that she wouldn’t cooperate, but she swung her yellow pomander aka “purse” over her arm and sauntered down the aisle and when she saw us at the end with the rest of the bridal party, she squealed with delight and ran toward us! The crowd loved it and it was a sweet way to start Kevin and Lisa’s lovely ceremony! Anyone need a flower girl? We can rent her out. She’s quiet a pro now.

The Many Faces Of Madelyn

Sometimes I wonder if Madelyn knows what our real faces look like. You know, the actual faces with a nose and mouth and a couple eyes and cheeks. Because it’s really quite possible that to her, my face is a black, shiny rectangle with a reflective apple. I mean, I ALWAYS have the iPhone in front of my face to read Facebook take photos of all her shenanigans.

Recently, we were traipsing through Bed, Bath & Beyond, one of our favs (hel-lo?! Coupons!), and Madelyn was getting a little squirmy in the cart. She kept grabbing at my sunglasses and not being in the mood to provide alternative entertainment, I obliged and gave her my sunglasses.

She proceeded to play with them and pose with them so how could I pass up a moment to snap away? I could not stop giggling at her faces and she soon drew a crowd of fans who enjoyed her antics. Sorry about the traffic jam near the pots and pans, BB&B!

I think she has a thing for accessories. Should we be scared?

The $16 sunglasses from Target are now at large near, I believe, the Pyrex dishes. Good thing I don’t buy expensive shades!

Birthday Party Details

Because I like to drive myself insane and self serve a sizzling hot plate of fresh, homemade stress, I decided to do a few DIY projects for Madelyn’s birthday luau. I allowed the 99 cent store to provide table accessories like table cloths and centerpieces and I had leis for everyone to wear when they arrived, but I got crafty in other areas like signage, party favor name tags, fruit skewers and the ball pit.

I wanted a sort of activity for the grown ups to participate in so I set up a makeshift “photobooth.” It didn’t look super professional or high tech and I didn’t intend for it to be. After all, it was just a one-year-old’s birthday party. I bought metallic streamers and an ALOHA banner on Shin Digz to hang from the ceiling of the gazebo. Unfortunately, the wind blew it in crazy directions so the streamer curtain hardly ever hung straight and still when guests stood in front of it for pictures. Good job, WIND. Bryan attached our point-and-shoot on a tripod and put it on the automatic self timer setting, and thanks to the directions I made on a sign, the hope was for people to press the button, run into the shot, and pose! Thankfully, it worked out pretty well! We got some great shots! I’ll email the photos to everyone so they have a takeaway — albeit, tardy — from the party. I collected props from various different stores and recycled paper face props on sticks from my friend Dana’s 30th birthday party (thanks, Dana!).

I knew I wanted to do fun and colorful party favors for the kids so I found a little sand toy kit that looked great displayed on a table for the young ones and tennis ball and velcro paddle kits for the school aged ones. To Hawaiian-ize them, I made personalized name labels with cardstock and rainbow zebra stripe paper. I used a thin Sharpie marker to write their names and the finishing touch was a sparkly palm tree next to the name.

I made a complementing sign with the same paper that said FOR THE KEIKI to tie in some Hawaiian language. Had to make sure the adult guests knew these goodies were for the kids and not them! I mean, doesn’t every grown man want a plastic shovel and rake in a basket purse? No?

A normal, sane person who had a huge party to throw and a to-do list a mile long would make the intelligent decision to buy a bunch of cut up Costco fruit and toss ’em into a bowl for a fruit salad. But because I am neither normal or sane, I bought that fruit — oh I bought it! — and then my fruit sous chef/mom helped me cut them up and assemble them on skewers, in rainbow order, no less, to create a dual purpose side dish/Hawaiian themed decorative pop of color on the table.

Was it worth it? Well, there were 3 skewers left by the end of the party. We started with — wait for it — 73.

So, Bryan and I thought about having a baby pool at the party because we knew it would be hot — oh and it was! The sun made good on its August promise — but deep into the party planning, I had visions of a out of The Sandlot when Squints falls to the bottom of the pool and in need of swim assistance, and unfortunately, this party wasn’t employing Wendy the Lifeguard to pull out nerdy boys and give them mouth-to-mouth. So, if the pool couldn’t have water in it, it would have the next best thing: balls.

Thanks to Amazon, I found really quality and colorful balls to fill up the pool so nearly 1000 balls later, I was so excited to see the babes pile in and have a good time. They did! Who wouldn’t, really? I actually wouldn’t know because as a small child, I was never allowed in the ball pit at Chuck E. Cheese “because it was filled with germs of strange, icky-pooey children.” But our own private ball pit with prescreened clean children? Score.

The shave ice hut did a great job tying in the theme of the party just by being there! The look and taste of the islands were very present and it was definitely my favorite part of the plans that came together.

All the pre-party work and early morning set up were totally worth it! It was stressful for the weeks leading up to the party to have everything I needed but couldn’t “rehearse” the set up before the actual big day since the party wasn’t in our home. But it all came together so smoothly and I enjoyed myself when all of our guests were there to celebrate Madelyn!

I know Madelyn won’t remember this party, and she’ll have a few more parties until she starts to have memories of birthdays, but the first birthday party seems like a big deal to me and something I enjoy looking at in my own baby book. We’ll always have the pictures — and the blog! — and I’m glad we created a special event that Madelyn will be able to go back and revisit and enjoy.

Going For A Walk

by Alison Friedman in Marvelous Madelyn, Photo Eye Candy

Two Madelyns go for an afternoon stroll with their walkers.

Coffee Junkie

Apparently Madelyn, like Mommy, needs an afternoon frothy caffeinated beverage to recharge and wake up. Stealing Mommy’s is not a win-win.