What Are The Rules For Inviting Others To A Celebration?

Specifically, what are the rules for inviting others to your child’s birthday?

Walker’s First Birthday is coming up. He will be a year old on July 13th. I know I will cry on that day, but hopefully not at his party because pictures, makeup, hair, and people. I started creating a Pinterest board months ago. I’m so excited because I love to plan and decorate events, but especially for my little boy!

Anyways, the toughest part of planning his birthday was deciding who to invite to celebrate his life, his milestones, and our love for him. Because think about it—for roughly six months (as a first time parent), you are exhausted, a home body, trying to adjust to having a sweet baby, and your social life fades away. And for the other six months, you are making memories with your baby, while also trying to rekindle your friendships and social life, while juggling who is going to keep my son/daughter when I have friend-time, or can I bring my child to this event/gathering? Will there be other kids?

For me, I also thought about all of my friends who have children around the same age as Walker. But some of these people aren’t technically my “friends”…yet, but I’d like them to be because we know the same people, have hung out multiple times before, and our children are roughly the same age, or will be in an age group where they can play together. While I want to invite these people to create a friendship for myself and for my son, I don’t want these people to think I am asking for a gift—well, I am asking for a gift, but not the one you are thinking. I’m asking for the gift of your receival of my olive branch, of your effort to start a friendship with us, and your presence at my son’s birthday—not baby clothes, a stuffed animal, a toy that lights up and plays songs, or a ball pit.

What are your thoughts? Opinions? Other ideas for creating a friendship with your friends to be?

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Our Chattanooga Vacation

Drakes Branch, VA to Chattanooga, TN

Recently, Nick and I went to Chattanooga for our first family vacation with Walker. From Drakes to Chattanooga, it is a 7 and a half hour drive. Before the haul, I was worried about how Walker would do, but he did great!

We travelled to Chattanooga on a Sunday—we left that morning and arrived that evening. Our house was pretty cool! When we go on any vacation, I try to explore Airbnb for a really unique rental home. It was a two room cave-like cottage. Rock was on the interior, as well. Our shower was super spacious. The kitchen was great and well-equipped. Our bed was comfy, but above our bed was a skylight. At night the skylight was pretty cool, but come early morning, the sun beamed straight in and woke us up. We had a hot tub and a grill, too. I would give this home a three/four out of five stars! I would stay here again, but in the fall!

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Sunday night, we ate at Canyon Grill. It was delicious—a little on the fanicer side, but so good! The tables were dressed in white linens and covered in glass. It was candle lit and the waiters were dressed very nice. Nick and I weren’t aware of the unspoken dress code, but it didn’t matter—they didn’t turn us away. Nick ate duck and I ate ground steak. Definitely try this place out for a nice dinner out!

Monday, we had a rest day, but Tuesday, we went to Rock City, Lookout Mountain, and Ruby Falls! Rock City was AWESOME! But listen to me when I say, DO NOT TAKE A STROLLER. If your sweet babe cannot walk yet, carry them in a baby carrier or sling. If you take a stroller, you miss out on some of Rock City’s experiences, plus it cannot fit on some of the pathways. I won’t spoil Rock City for you, but you go through multiple “exhibitions” and they are all very neat! I enjoyed it! Rock City and Lookout Mountain are where you view the Seven States and the mountain with the gorgeous waterfall. Nick and I bought a combo ticket which gave us discounted prices on all three attractions (including the Incline Railway), but we ended up running out of time and not being able to ride it. But we did see it, and it looked fun!

On Tuesday, we ate a Mojo Burrito—very Chipotle like, but the food was super delicious! Plus, the prices were very reasonable. For dinner, we grabbed a pizza from a place in Downtown Chattanooga and ate ice cream from Clumpie’s.

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Wednesday we visited the Tennessee Aquarium. It was amazing and Walker loved it! It’s huge and split into two buildings. It was clean and had plenty of space, plus the gift shops were great. Employees were helpful and super kind, too. Walker is 11 months old and he thoroughly enjoyed looking at all the different fish! We were able to take a stroller and maneuver perfectly fine!

After the Aquarium, we ate at Puckett’s before we headed to the Jack Daniel and George Dickel Distilleries. Puckett’s was so good! Our waitress was the sweetest. We needed to warm Walker’s milk bottle up, so she brought us a cup of hot water to our table to help. The Distilleries were only an hour and half from Chattanooga. Jack Daniel’s is one of my favorites and Nick likes both, therefore we made the trip! We did the tour at George Dickel, but not Jack Daniel’s. George Dickel was very low-key, and set in a beautiful mountain bottom. Jack Daniel’s was incredibly busy and full of people. We enjoyed both, though.

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Thursday, we checked out Vinterest Southside. It was so cool! I wanted to buy everything! Afterwards, we went to Coolidge Park. Walker and I rode the carousel and he loved it! It was very clean and the ride was only a $1.00. The Park was beautiful. There were kids playing in the water fountains and the walk down by the river was well worth it. That night, we ate at Thatcher’s. It was a small place, but the food was great!

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Friday, we had a chill day since we were leaving Saturday morning. We hung out around our house and went to Cloudland Canyon State Park. We were only able to do one trail and check out the gift shop, but it was a perfect, beautiful day! That night, we ate at Lookout Mountain Pizza—also delicious!

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If you have little ones under the age of one or two, I strongly suggest visiting Chattanooga. We had plenty to do! Walker loved everything—even the hiking! He loves to be outdoors. Walker also did great in all the restaurants!

Baby Girls Are Not More Fun Than Baby Boys

And baby boys are not more fun than baby girls.

Recently at an event, I had an individual come up to me and tell me, “baby girls are more fun than boys”, and this individual went on to say that shopping is also more fun and easier for baby girls.

Does this individual know that I have an eleven-month old baby boy? Yes.

Shockingly enough, I held my tongue and didn’t respond to the person the way I wanted to respond, because well…manners, maturity, and because this individual doesn’t even have a child of their own.

As I mentioned, I have a sweet baby boy, Walker. He is almost a year old. I’m also blessed to have a beautiful niece, Laurel Kate. Laurel Kate and Walker are very close in age, roughly three and a half months apart. I’ve had the joy of watching them both grow and develop. I am not a Mother to a girl. I’m expecting but I don’t know what I am having yet. Nick and I find out July 1st. But I am a Mother to a wild, loveable, and comical baby boy. Does this give me grounds to say that baby boys are more fun than girls? Absolutely not. And I would never dream of saying those words to my sister-in-law or my brother, because how would I know?

Parents of both a girl and a boy, may be able to tell you who is “more fun”, but even then—I think they would tell you that their children are both fun and fun in their own ways, but not more fun than the other. What about parents of only boys or only girls? In my opinion, that relates to my current situation. I’m only a boy mom. I don’t know what it is like to have girls.

Regardless, all children are fun. Watching Walker grow, learn, explore, and face challenges has been amazing. Watching Laurel Kate dance, sign for milk, and wave bye just melts my heart.

Something to take away from this post…

  1. If you do not have a child of your own, or even if you do, don’t ever communicate with another parent that a boy or girl is more fun than the other. If you truly believe that girls are more fun than boys (or vice versa), keep that opinion to yourself.

  2. Shopping for boys is actually really fun. I love pairing bowties with shorts and a button up. I love shopping for athletic wear—seeing Walker in a little Nike outfit is the cutest. And there are actually alot of stores that have a variety of super cute clothes for boys. If you are resourceful, you know this ;)

  3. All babies/children are different. Some are going to hit milestones before others. Some are going to be shy. Some are going to be outgoing. But most of all, having a child of your own is a blessing. Boys and girls are both super fun. Don’t let anyone tell you any different.

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