Train Themed Birthday Party

Train Themed Birthday Party

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Yes, you read that correctly, I have a one year old! It’s so crazy to think that he is already that old but he is and we had so much fun recently celebrating his first birthday with family and friends.

I decided after much deliberation on a train theme for his birthday. I know I’ve mentioned on my blog before how much I love event planning and this was no exception. Planning and prepping for his birthday was almost as fun as the party itself. Let me know if you would like for me to do a separate blog post that focused on event planning tips in the comments below!

We held his party at a park since his birthday is in August and in Seattle most days are sunny and warm if not hot around this time of year. Not hosting it at our home meant for some extra planning and car trips back and forth hauling tables, food and chairs, but it was worth the effort to have the space and be outdoors.

Leading up to the party I planned out our menu, cake, decorations and what I wanted the event space layout to be. Having this all set before really helped the day of since we didn’t have a ton of time to get set up. I also pre-ordered the balloons to match with the purchased train themed items (plates, napkins, tablecloth) and made the food, cake and cupcakes the day before. I will be doing a separate blog post of the train cake that I made so check back soon for that.

For decorations I purchased a few train themed items and then did a few DIY projects as well. I made the two Railroad Crossing signs and they were super easy and inexpensive! I bought poster board from Hobby Lobby and then just had my husband use an exacto knife and cut the board into equal smaller pieces. I layered two pieces in an “X” shape to figure out how the lettering would work and then used a sharpie and wrote out Railroad Crossing on the two separate pieces. Once that was finished I used a hot glue gun to seal the two pieces together and that’s all it consisted of!

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I also took pictures of Carter each month showing his growth progression over his first year. It’s amazing to see how much he has changed in such a short period of time. I hung the photos just from some black ribbon in the tent so it was on display for everyone to see.

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The menu included: make-your-own pretzel bun sandwiches from the meat and cheese tray, fruit tray, veggie tray, pesto pasta salad, potato chips and train cake. I wanted items that were picnic focused but also easy to transport and eat.

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We had such a lovely time with our friends and family celebrating Carter. Happy Birthday!

xo

Hillary

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Infant Traveling Tips

Infant Traveling Tips

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Poor babe is like “Where are we??!”

I have to admit I was very nervous to travel with our six month old baby on a six-hour flight from Seattle to Hawaii. Prior to our flight I did a lot of research on traveling with an infant and it definitely helped. It prepared me for a few situations that arose during our time in the airports and on our flights. One thing that I would highly recommend is calling your airline before your flight. I called our airline (Alaska) and checked in with them on their requirements for traveling with a baby. I found out I actually had to register Carter on my ticket since he wasn’t going to be in his own seat and they recommended that we bring a copy of his birth certificate just in case we were asked for it. We actually never used it but I’m glad we were prepared just in case.

I rounded up some tips below on traveling with a baby based on my recent experience and I hope this helps to put your mind at ease:

  1. Car Seat & Stroller: We decided to take our car seat and travel stroller with us as we were going to be gone for over a week and knew that we would be traveling around quite a bit. Unfortunately we weren’t able to use an umbrella stroller yet as our babe is still a little small but the clip in travel stroller worked really well. The great thing about it was we were able to push him all the way through the airport and to the gate and the airline let us check the stroller and car seat for free. I was a little nervous about them getting damaged or dirty in transit but we didn’t have any issues either way.
  2. Formula: Going through security was a bit trickier as he is on formula and the bottles were over the 3.4 ounce limit. I wanted to have ready-to-feed liquid formula for the flights as mixing the powder formula in bottles can be rather messy and you don’t always have access to fresh water on airplanes. For getting through security I would recommend that you budget some extra time (15 or so minutes) if you bring through liquid formula as TSA spends extra time screening you, at least they did with us.
  3. Schedule/Naps: While we were on the plane my husband wore our ERGObaby carrier and we put Carter in and out of it throughout the flight. This worked really well for us keeping him on his schedule as he napped twice on the plane both ways. I was so thankful for this as one of my biggest concerns with the travel was that he wouldn’t stay on his schedule.

Overall, Carter was in a pretty good mood and only got fussy right before his naps on the planes. I think we were pretty lucky and I am grateful that he wasn’t really disruptive to those traveling around us.

Traveling with an infant was challenging at times but being able to go on vacation and have him experience a different part of the world was worth the extra work.What tips do you have for traveling with your baby? Share below as I’d love to hear more, especially as Carter gets older and travel becomes more challenging!

xo

Hillary

Woodland Forest Baby Shower

Woodland Forest Baby Shower

A slight diversion from my typical blog posts, but I wanted to share with you another passion of mine: event planning. I’ve always enjoyed planning events and even did it as part of my career for a short while. So when I had the opportunity to co-host my best friend’s baby shower I was very excited!

We decided on a woodland forest theme as to coordinate with her nursey and it couldn’t have worked out better. With the help of Pinterest, lots of greenery, my dad’s woodworking skills and many pinecones later, we created a woodland forest inside my home.

The menu consisted of: bacon mushroom quiche, pinecone cheese balls, kale quiona salad, yogurt parfaits, baby bottle cookies, chocolate covered “twig” pretzels, forest fruit punch and chocolate mushroom cupcakes.

In the coming weeks I hope to share with a few of the recipes from the food that I prepared, but for now please enjoy the pictures below.

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How cute are these mushroom cupcakes my friend made?!!

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My mom made the wooden BABY garland, isn’t it darling?img_2047img_2049

My friend also created this mobile too! Isn’t she creative?img_2048

More to come from me on the recipes, stay tuned!

Hillary

Major News & Remodel

Major News & Remodel

It’s been far too long since I’ve blogged! But I needed a break and have had some big life changes happen over the past 10 months that I want to share with you all.

I found out in December 2015 that I am pregnant! My husband and I are so excited and we’re looking forward to meeting our baby boy later this summer. Needless to say, it’s been pretty busy around our house preparing for our upcoming addition to the family but it’s been so much fun.

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Aside from the typical annoying pregnancy symptoms, somehow I have ended up with almost all of them at one point or another over the past seven months, I can eat gluten again! Food allergies are often impacted during pregnancy and I have to say that I am so thankful for this symptom. Honestly, I feel so much more free now that I can eat without having to read every single nutritional label. I never realized how stressful it made me feel not being able to eat gluten. It may come back once I’m no longer pregnant, but we’ll see.

Another item that consumed much of our time the past several months was our kitchen. We had our kitchen remodeled in May and it is beautiful! I cannot believe how much of a difference it has made in not only the appearance of our home but also the functionality of our kitchen space. We worked with Kitchen Plus and they were incredible. They were also so accommodating once they found out we were expecting and moved our remodel date up which truly lifted a huge weight off our shoulders. I couldn’t be happier with the result and it was so worth not having a kitchen for two weeks.

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I look forward to hopefully some more frequent blog posts here over the next several weeks, especially with utilizing my new kitchen. Have a great rest of your day!

xoxo

Hillary