As we approach your first birthday, we are still marvelling at how quickly the time is passing by. There have been much more subtle developments such that we barely recognise when you do something new.
This morning, I asked Evie if she wanted breakfast. She crawled over to the kitchen door. It's so amazing how she is starting to understand.—
Mama Kate (@raisingevelina) October 28, 2011
Your understanding of what we are saying is definitely increasing although you still choose to be quite selective about whether you understand ‘no’! Thankfully your fascination in the TV unit seems to have dwindled although the remote control still seems to enthrall you more than anything else. Telephones seem to the latest obsession and it is so cute to watch you use any mobile phone-shaped object like a telephone – the Flip video camera, a shoe, anything!
It is really lovely that you seem to have grasped the concept of kissing – you even purse your lips on occasion although you do tend to favour a more continental (read: French) approach: mouth open, tongue out! Still, it is lovely that you are so affectionate and we have even been treated to some (very quick) hugs. You are still a bit of a fidget when you hug but we will allow it!
At the end of October, we went to your first First Birthday Party for your friend Ruby. As it was close to Halloween, you were able to wear your cuter-than-cute witches outfit. There have been a steady stream of first birthdays with Rory first, then Ruby, Arthur and Jacob before yours. Arthur had a party too which you attended, although we had to leave quite early for you to have a nap. You are still such a good sleeper and unless you have your three naps a day, things are not all well with the world for you!
As well as all the first birthdays, you helped your cousin Poppy celebrate her 2nd birthday at Hatton Country World.
Your physical developments has come along well this month with a steadier walk-along at furniture; more willingness to walk with us holding your hands and sometimes, just the one hand; an interest in climbing which has you climbing into your toy box, climbing the sofa and climbing the stairs. You now shoot up the stairs pretty well although you still need the safety net of someone right behind you as you tend to lack precision!
The climbing is getting silly: Evelina managed to climb onto the top of the fireguard and also she made it up onto the sofa without a boost.—
Mama Kate (@raisingevelina) November 08, 2011
Towards the end of the month, we noticed you start thinking about letting go when you were standing at the sofa and we have now seen you stand for a good ten seconds at a time. There have been no steps as yet but it doesn’t seem like it will long.
We also went for our first bike ride this month with you on your new bike seat. So much fun!
You have also developed an interest in box forts so we have been meaning to make you a bigger box fort to play in. You are inquisitive and playful which is so much fun.
Sometimes you look so grown-up, like at your birthday party when you handled the influx of people with aplomb. Yet, sometimes we still see glimpses of our little baby.
The day before your birthday, we took you to have some professional pictures taken and it went so well (a little too well, if you ask our bank account!). The photographer was delighted by you and we got so many good pictures of you. I was so pleased with your party frock which you also wore on your birthday – beautiful bronze taffeta-type fabric with a big bow. You looked gorgeous.
In the blink of an eye, you have gone from that tiny, little creature with gunk in your hair to a big eyed smiler with a great sense of humour who always has a lot to say, even if you can’t speak yet.
I have now been a mama for a year and I still have so much to learn. The strange thing to me was that at no point did I ever feel lost or like a novice but at the beginning, I felt like your caretaker. It just took a little while to comprehend that I was your mother. I think I am still getting to grips with what that means! It seems odd to thank a baby for being themselves but I really do want to thank you for being such an extraordinary child. I know that every mother feels that their child is exceptional and I am no exception! You are a marvel, a wonder, a delight and a blessing. You have made me and your daddy so very happy.
Yesterday was a fantastic day. We had our family over to celebrate Evelina’s birthday. I was so thrilled that Evelina seemed to enjoy it so much – she coped to well with all the people and she was definitely enjoying the present-opening business!
Evelina had a blast, that’s for sure. She really loves playing with her Nanny and Uncle Matt!
She loved her new toys which included these great Megabloks from Auntie Jenny…
When most of the guests had arrived, we sang Happy Birthday to Evelina and blew out the candle on her cake. After singing, the guests gave a round of applause and when Evelina joined in, I felt as much joy as I have ever felt in my life. My baby was one year old and smiling and clapping at her most loved ones. It was a magical moment.
I don’t think she will fully appreciate her quilt for a while yet but it was nice to be able to show the finished product to everyone.
By 5.30 she was starting to flag. Not bad considering she had been up for a whole 3 hours by then – an age by her standards!
But even so, she coped very well without her normal naptimes! She got changed into her new pyjamas from Uncle Matthew.
She’s a very lucky girl – this was her this morning having a play with some of her birthday spoils!
I can’t quite believe that Evelina will be One on Sunday. We have decided not to have a big party but instead just have close family over for an informal celebration. I have bought her a new outfit which she will also be able to wear to her birthday photo shoot which we have booked in on Saturday – just a Pixifoto shoot but it will be nice to have a professional photo of her to remember her first birthday.
I now need to decide on which drinks and nibbles I will be serving. This will probably mean hours pouring over MarthaStewart.com and then ordering frozen party food from Ocado!
Decorations will be a bit easier as we will be able to reuse the bunting and left-over napkins from her baptism. I just need some balloons, because a birthday isn’t a birthday without balloons. Oh and then there’s the cake. I rather want to make it myself but this might be a bit optimistic given that I also want to finish her quilt.
Yesterday Evelina was baptised on a gloriously and surprisingly sunny day for October. We celebrated with our immediate family including Evelina’s Uncle James and Auntie Jenny and her other Godparents, Phil and Caroline along with their families. We enjoyed some scrummy roast pork rolls, some delicious cake (made by The Cake Company) and a dash of bubbly. The weather allowed us to spill out into my parents’ pretty back garden and it was a relaxed and intimate way to mark this special day.
I spent a ridiculous amount of time choosing the tableware and eventually went for a range called Utterly Scrumptious – the bunting probably swayed me because you know how I love my bunting! I also wanted some single large blooms to go either side of the cake but these flowers are not in season and eventually, my mum and I settled on these pink roses which we put in crystal brandy glasses. Lastly, I chose some Cath Kidston napkins and I was thrilled with the overall effect.
I was really pleased with how Evelina looked in her dress – I am so grateful to my mum for helping me make this. I was also in love with my own dress which I picked up at the last-minute on Saturday from Dotty Ps when I realised I wasn’t that happy with what I had to wear – and at £28 I thought it was a bargain! Slinky, classy and comfortable – the trifecta!
If you read my all five horizons blog, then you will know that I have been making Evelina’s Christening dress ready for her Baptism on Sunday at St. Margaret’s in Whitnash. On Wednesday I managed to finish it with just a few days to spare!
We have decided to have a very small do – just immediate family and Evelina’s Godparents. I am so pleased that the weather looks like it will behave although it does make the rather expensive furry cardigan I bought for Evelina seem a bit over-the-top!
Making her dress has given me a real taste for making clothes for Evelina so I am planning on choosing something to make from the book that my parents bought me for Christmas, Making Baby’s Clothes.