Monday, July 10, 2006

The right thing to do

I have recently found myself struggling with the first birthday party dilemma. I rationalize theories such as no one remembers turning one; that it is more for the parents than the child; I don’t want to milk the occasion for gifts and most of the people that we'd invite wouldn't come.

On the other hand, I do want to make every effort to give the same things to my second child as I have given to my first. I am already failing miserably. She wears hand me downs and plays with the same toys. I have filmed a miniscule amount of video footage as what I did with Strawberry. (Here's Strawberry sleeping, oh look another angle of her sleeping, now a close up of her sleeping… Endless hours of entertainment that only a mother or a grandmother could sit through.) I pushed for and celebrated every milestone but have now adapted a more relaxed parenting style.

All this led me to conclude that I could not pass up the opportunity to create some special birthday photos for Buttercup, as that is where the memories hide. Who doesn't love looking at photos of their first birthday? I've cherished the smiling picture of me in my crib that my mother took first thing on the morning that I turned one. I love looking at the two special birthday cakes that marked the big occasion. I note how my relatives made the extra long road trip to another province with my young cousins in tow. Ah, the first birthday!

I know to take pictures of the cake before the baby puts her fingers in the icing. To delight in the moment when she discovers the sweet goodness. I know balloons are mesmerizing and that colourful wrapping paper on the outside beats the present on the inside. As I have tried to learn from my mistakes, I now know the importance of the birthday card to a child that cannot read.

It's at special occasions like birthdays and holidays that I miss my family with an extreme intensity. They know how to celebrate, to come together as a family to create lasting memories. Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas and birthdays were a time of laughter and food. If I could magically cut and rearrange the map of our magnificent country to place my prairie hometown within a couple hours driving time to Toronto, that would be perfection.

Of course the days just seem to disappear and time is escaping me. I realized that I needed to do something fast. Quick: Order me up some super cool parents with children. Consider yourself officially invited thanks to Mama Blogs Toronto and HBM. That is, of course if you can easily find your way to this section of the real world. If it is easier to virtual travel, expect some photos of babies smooshing cake next week.

15 Singing the blues:

Nicole said...

Sorry I can't make it to Canada, but we'll be there in spirit! I hope you have a beautiful day.

Mrs. Chicky said...

Unfortunately, for us, Toronto is a bit of a long hike but we'll celebrate for you down here in New England. WhooHoo! An excuse to eat cake!

Her Bad Mother said...

We'll be doing everyhting that we can to get there (it's just down the road, but everything depends upon sleep or lack thereof - if WonderBaby goes down she's staying down)

But we're gonna do our best. It'll be WB's first party!

Sunshine Scribe said...

We love a good party!

Buttercup has a great mom.

hautemama said...

Sorry I missed the party! You sound like an amazing mom!

mamatulip said...

I always think to myself, "Did we do this for Julia, too?" when it comes to doing something for Oliver. I don't want him to feel slighted, ever...but at one, he's not going to notice. I have to keep telling myself that. ;)

chelle said...

I think it is awesome that you are going to have a party. We had a quiet first b-day for our daughter, but this year she is having a pool party with her own guests!!! I can hardly wait!

Pattie the Domesticator said...

I am guilty of the same thing...only it was worse with my third. I think birthday parties can be overdone, though. Do what makes you feel comfortable.

I wish we could be there! Toronto would be a long haul from North Carolina, virtual birthday party it is! Hope you all enjoy the day!

Mega Mom said...

Yes, enjoy. The poor, poor second child :) That is where all my guilt stems from...

I was a fifth, but so far from all the others, that I was like an only child.

Even if you give her everything that Strawberry had, she'll still blame you for something in her teens :)

Mommy off the Record said...

I know there's NO way my second child will have the amount of video, photos, journaling, etc. that Little Guy has. It's sad to think about it, but I guess it also natural because YOU are also discovering things for the first time with your first child. I guess the good news is that nowadays most people have small families. I mean, I wonder how the 9th, 10th and 11th children feel?! They're probably lucky to get a name and not just a number. LOL

metro mama said...

I don't think we'll be able to, but if plans change, we'll come.

Have a great time. Thanks for the invite!

Jennifer said...

Happy 1st Birthday, to Buttercup!!! I missed out on Strawberry's 1st birthday (although we stopped by for a moment to drop off stuff) due to a cold...unfortunately I will probably duplicate that for Buttercup this year due to um...a much bigger "cold" :(
I send my love and hope you are all doing well and can't wait to come and see you!

AC said...

Have the first birthday party, take a million photos....I have two as well, it happens to everyone (imagine being the 3rd or 4th????)

Read your friendship post...publish that....powerful words...Thanks, Anne

lildb said...

OOOH! I can't *wait* to get a load of those snaps. that delicious baby eating that delicious cake. ahem. CAKE.

congratulations for making it through her first year with your sanity intact. :)

xoxo

Bridgermama said...

Consider us there in spirit! I expect the same from you on B's special day!