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It is no secret that Maya loves all things art. She spends a good portion of her free time creating things. So, when she requested an art themed party for her birthday I wasn’t surprised! My mission to throw her a birthday party to remember began. After I got over the fear of completely failing at throwing a decent party I set to work hunting down the perfect ideas on Pinterest. I found a few project ideas I thought would be perfect and some decor ideas I hoped I was capable of pulling off. With me to do list in hand I set to work creating what I hoped would be the perfect Art Party for Maya’s 7th birthday.

The decor came together so well. I had so much fun creating this party. From the mini easels, to the mini paint cans, to the rice crispies paint brushes, to the “Maya’s Art Studio” sign it was all so much fun to create and put together.

I decided to make a couple of examples of the art project we had planned for the party and display them along with a “Maya’s Art Studio” sign I made. I figured this would give the kids a chance to see what the project looked like once completed and it gave the party a nice artsy feel.

Since we were going to be painting had aprons for each girl and I bought fabric markers so they could decorate their own aprons. I had a friend of mine put each girl’s name on an apron with puffy paint to personalize them a bit for them. I also made a mini easel out of popsicle sticks for each of the girls. During the party it held their name tag but I figured it would be a fun way to display their artwork at home.

Decorating and personalizing their aprons was a great way to kick off the party and the girls had so much

fun. Each girl did a great job making their apron their own and using their creativity.

Once everyone had finished their aprons we moved onto the main project. I chose a watercolor project for the party. I provided each girl with a canvas and some watercolors. The idea of the project was to saturate the canvas with as much color as they could, once their painting was complete we sprinkled salt on the canvas to create some starburst effects and drizzled a little glue to create further unique effects on the art work. The girls did an amazing job and created some beautiful pieces of art. I hope they are proud of their pieces and are displaying them at home on their little easels!

This is Maya’s finished artwork. I love the tie dye effect created with the watercolors and the starburst created by the salt. I opted for sparkle glue and that was a big hit with the girls. This project was so fun and so easy. I highly recommend it if you are looking for a good kid friendly painting project.

After the art work was completed we moved on to eating. The rice crispies paint brushes were a big hit and so fun and easy to make.

I had a lot of fun coming up with creative food and drink ideas for this party. Turns out an art party is a great way for the host to channel their creativity as well :)

The final art spin of the day was with the cake. I opted for cupcakes and picked up some paint trays with a large center. I placed the cupcake in the middle and filled the paint tray with sprinkles of various colors, sizes and textures and had the girls decorate their own cupcakes. It was another huge hit!

This party was so fun to throw. The birthday girl was very happy with how everything turned out, which is the most important thing!

At 11:30pm on this day 7 years ago I heard the cries of my first baby as she came into this world. I cuddled her soft baby skin against mine and basked in the glory of brand new motherhood.

The last 7 years have flown by. My first baby has gone from a helpless bundle, to a waddling toddler, to a rambunctious preschooler, to a full of life first grader in the blink of an eye!

Maya, you are one heck of a little girl. You are smart, creative, loving, fun and passionate about life. Your favorite things right now include reading, gymnastics, dancing, playing with your friends, and being artistic. You crave knowledge and spend so much time reading and learning. You want to be either a teacher or an author when you grow up, or both. You are a good friends and your friends love spending time with you. You are a good big sister, you set a good example for your little sisters (most of the time!) and they both look up to you and love being around you and playing with you. 7 years ago when you came into this world I could hardly imagine you were finally here let along imagine that one day you would be a big 7 year old! I’ve loved watching you grow up and can’t wait to see what life has in store for you.

Happy Birthday, Maya!! Love you to pieces.

This past weekend Maya hit a big milestone, one she has been waiting a long time for. She lost her first tooth!!

The story behind how she lost her tooth is one that will keep us laughing years to come. Her tooth had been wiggly for a few weeks but late last week it started to get really wiggly and it was apparent that she would have her first encounter with the tooth fairy in the not too distant future. All weekend she was fiddling with it and asking over and over again when it would finally fall out. Sunday evening, at that twilight part of the day when the sun is going down and it can be hard to see, the kids were out front playing with a few of their neighborhood friends. They were all horsing around and one of Maya’s friends jumped up and started to run without realizing that Maya was right in his path. He ran right into her, the top of his head hitting her mouth. You can imagine where this is going, right? Maya started crying and trying to spit something out, that was her tooth. The impact had knocked out her tooth. At first she was really mad and upset but then it hit her that her tooth had finally fallen out, the thing she had been waiting forever for! She was all smiles after that!

She put her tooth in a little baggie with a note to the tooth fairy that this was her very first lost tooth and hung it from her bed post. That night the tooth fairy crept into her room and left her an adorable, mini sized note and $5 dollars (she got a little extra since this was her first lost tooth and the circumstances were a little out of the ordinary). She was so excited the next morning to find the treasure in her little baggie :)

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As I mentioned in her birthday post, and as I mention every month when I do these monthly write ups, time is flying by at an incredibly pace. I truly can hardly believe my little baby is already a year old.

Weight: 18lbs 1oz (24th percentile on the breastfed baby chart)

Height: 28.5 ins (26th percentile)

Head Circumference: 18 ins (72nd percentile)

Nora is rocking the peanut status. As her doctor said at her well child check up the other day, she decided to grow her brain these last few months instead of her height and weight ;) .  Nora is almost exactly the same size Anna was at a year!

Nora’s well child check up went well. She is hitting or exceeding all her expected milestones. Like her sisters before her she is ahead on verbal communication. Apparently, Lorne and I breed talkers. I’m going to say they get that from their dad. The doctor said she looked perfect and the only small concern that came up after her finger prick blood screen was slightly low iron levels. Low iron levels are fairly common in breastfed babies so we left the appointment with a long list of iron rich foods to try and hopes that the next finger prick blood screen at 15 months shows improved numbers.

Nora has been busy this month learning to talk and making progress on the walking front. She is very chatty and already has a few words she says, or at least sounds she makes to mean certain things, including mama (mommomma), dada, balloon (boon), dog, bye bye (sometimes), hi, that and more. She also communicates well with nonverbal ques like pointing, out stretched arms when she wants up, etc. I have to say it is so nice to have good communicators at this age. It usually isn’t hard to figure out what she wants between her verbal and nonverbal ques.

But, she isn’t only working hard on talking she is also really trying to figure out walking. She crawls like a little speed demon and is quite the accomplished climber. Recently she figured out how to stand on her own without having to pull up on anything. You should see the pride on her face when she does. She stands there waiting for praise ;) She can walk pretty well holding onto our hands or pushing something in front of her and yesterday, while I was at a meeting at Maya’s school, she took her first couple of independent steps. It won’t be long now.

This is such a fun age. I love watching her explore and learn. She plays so well independently and with her sisters. She adores our cat Penny and our neighbor’s dog. She loves going for walks and pointing out all the trees and birds she sees. She loves to dance and will dance to any music be it the little tunes her toys play, someone in the house singing or songs on the radio. Her two favorite songs right now are This Is How We Do by Katy Perry and Knights of Shame by Awolnation. Both are guaranteed to get her moving! She laughs easily and loves when she makes other people laugh. She is super cuddly and loves to snuggle. She often ask to be picked up or crawl into my lap just so she can snuggle into me. She also gives kisses (those big open mouth baby kisses) and has started blowing kisses too. If I could pause time for a bit right now I totally would. I just can’t get enough of it all.

I know time is going to continue flying by and before I know it I’ll be writing a post about her at 2. For now I’ll just keep trying to soak it all up and tuck the memories of these moments away in my mind for later when I miss having a baby around.

On this day, one year ago, the sweetest little bundle of baby was born.

Sometimes in life we are given little gems. Little surprises that weren’t necessarily on our radar, or in our plan, but end up being exactly perfect. If I had planned for this baby and dreamed of her I couldn’t have ever imagined how perfectly she would fit in our family. She feels like she has always been here, though it still feels like just yesterday I was holding her in my arms for the very first time.

From day one she has been this calm, happy, inquisitive, snuggly baby.  Watching her grow this past year has been such a joy and a blessing. I am so incredibly grateful to be her mommy.

 

Happy 1st Birthday, Nora!! I can’t wait to see what the next year, and the many years after that, have in store for you.