Bear’s All Week Long Birthday Celebration!

So, when a child turns 5, it’s a big deal. One, you can actually use your entire hand for your age and probably the only time you can do it. Second, you’re at that age where you’re considered to be a little big kid. Not a big kid like the 7 year olds and up, but you’re no longer considered a toddler. 

And plus, five is the cool age. You can actually fully remember things. You’re old enough (and sometimes tall enough) to go to places now, though Bear has always been pretty tall enough thanks to tall genes in both of our families. 

But enough babbling, let’s talk about how we celebrated this boy’s five-year-age milestone. 

First things first, we celebrated his actual birthday at the California Science Center, one of Bear’s favorite places to go. We explored that entire museum from top to bottom and he really enjoyed himself. 

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The next day, Bear had school, so I surprised him and his classmates with cupcakes: 

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Then, finally, after weeks of planning on Etsy, hitting up Party City, redoing the menu no less than 10 times (we ended up going to Costco and Smart and Final, which is what we should’ve done from the jump), and getting the cake just right, it was time for his weekend birthday party: 

First, he needed a custom-made shirt, courtesy of Etsy

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And he needed a custom candle

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And custom invites: 

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If you’re in the Northeast Los Angeles area, I highly recommend the Awesome Playground. We’ve been coming here for about a year now and it was the first time we’ve had a party there. 

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Photo courtesy of Robyn Cherry

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The staff is so professional and they handled just about everything from cake-cutting to the clean-up and set-up.

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They also even set up the food as we brought it in. Our package included an outdoor slide and a custom-made piñata. 

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Finally, after the piñata was broken (and it was hard to break; even Maks struggled with it), it was time for more sugar!!!!

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This cake is courtesy of Takes the Cake bakery located in Pasadena, CA. I highly, highly recommend them! 

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With the goody bags and treats. These, I purchased from Party City. 

And finally with Bear and his friends: 

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Courtesy of Robyn Cherry

So, what was in the goody bags? Well, we did have the standard toys but we also had some puzzles in there: 

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I just went online and did a search for a Minecraft party. Also, Pinterest helped big time! 

The birthday party was more expensive than we’d originally planned, but we didn’t go too far over budget. Everyone had a great time and most importantly, so did Bear and his friends.

I do have some recommendations if you’re about to plan your child’s birthday party: 

  1. Location, location, location. While we do live in a nice-sized duplex, it was not big enough to hold 10 preschoolers, and roughly 20 adults. Having the party at a park was a consideration, but this is L.A., so there wasn’t a guarantee we would get a good spot without renting out tables and chairs. We also wanted a place where it would be easy for everyone to get to. 
  2. Consider the set-up and clean-up factor. While some people won’t mind it, Maks and I gladly outsourced that part and it was worth the money. 
  3. Ask your child what he/she likes and plan accordingly. Bear really wanted a cake, so that’s what he had. He really wanted a piñata, and we got one for him. We asked him what toys he likes and made sure to request those. The last thing the child and parent needs is to be grumpy on his birthday party.
  4. Etsy and Pinterest will become your best friends, forever. Etsy has a lot of local and small vendors who will gladly do whatever you requested (as long as enough time is given) and Pinterest is full of FREE IDEAS. Use them! Get to know them! Love them. 
  5. Children probably won’t eat any food and that’s okay. We had the adults in mind when we did the menu – sandwiches from Costco, chips, fruit and veggie trays from Smart and Final. Kids will be more interested in playing with their friends. We did have juice boxes and water for them. 
  6. Goody bags are not necessary, but they are nice. Not only will a kid go to a birthday party, but he’ll get a bag of treats to take home. Pretty cool, huh? 

The next party we’ll have for Bear is when he’ll graduate from preschool in a few months. And the fun begins yet again…

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Maks and Bear, courtesy of Robyn Cherry
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Bear is five.

It’s crazy to think five years ago, I won the lottery.

That’s exactly how I felt when Is aw Bear for the very first time. It honestly felt like I won the lottery. Life couldn’t have gotten any better.

I just love this little boy so much. He’s my world, my encourager, my coach, one of my best friends, and he’s just an amazing kid.

I love him so.

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I can’t wait to see what his future will bring.

Happy Birthday, Bear. I wish you love, success, happiness, and a wonderful life. My beautiful child.

Summer Recap

We did a lot this summer and it was a lot of fun. From swimming to the beach to just enjoying life! Though I do wish we did just a bit more, I’m proud we accomplished a lot. So, let’s go!

Swimming lessons:

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If you followed my IG stories, we enrolled Bear into swimming. It was rather coaxing to get him to take his lessons and lots of promises were made (and kept). I wouldn’t call Bear a swimmer but he knows the basics. We’re going to enroll him again this fall.

Beach:

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Sadly, we didn’t go to the beach very much! We actually only went once but we went on a special day – our 10 year anniversary!

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That was pretty cool to explore Long Beach. We haven’t been there in a long while and it was just nice to be surrounded by the ocean breeze. We got to see dolphins swimming! It was for a brief moment; so brief I couldn’t capture a pic, but it was a cool experience!

Enjoying the new place:

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We’ve had quite  a few ups and downs in our new place and tbh, we’re so over it. However, it was nice to have Bear experience having a front yard and a back yard.

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Besides, how often does an ice cream truck pull up in front of your house? C’mon!

Gun range:

It was my first time shooting a gun and it was very cathartic. No matter where you stand on the gun control issue, I do recommend every woman should learn how to shoot a gun if need be.

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Gardening:

This summer we had several epic heat waves so my garden that kicked all sorts of booty during the spring was flopping harder than a Katherine Heigel movie. But I managed to get something!

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Being a kid:

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I had Bear participate in a lot of kid activities where he could just enjoy himself. I mean, yeah, I’m dope, but sometimes Bear needs someone his own age and size? LOL. It was fun to let him just run around.

Now Bear is starting his final year of preschool and I’m researching many schools around our old neighborhood since we’ll be moving back there pretty soon. Now I get to have Bear in school full-time next year and eh….I’m not sure how I can handle that, LOL.

Today I have a four-year old

 

It’s crazy to think four years ago, I gave birth to one of the most amazing persons ever. Like ever.

Motherhood has been a challenge, no doubt. A lot of ups and quite a few downs. But I can’t imagine my life without him.

He brings a smile to my face when I’m down. He makes me see the bright side of things. He’s my inspiration when I don’t have any. He’s the reason I keep going and want to do better.

To My Beautiful Bear, Happy Birthday. I love you always.

School Pictures

It’s occurred to me that I’ll never really posted Bear’s school pictures before. These came out pretty good! But honey, let me tell you…getting this kid to keep still and smile took a lot more effort than I expected it to!

People keep telling me and Maks to put Bear into modeling. We are contemplating it when he’s older and he wants to do it (I honestly don’t have time or the want to be a stage mom right now). After trying to coax my kid into staying still and smiling, I’m not sure if that’s a path I want to take! LOL

But for now, check out Bear’s school pics! So bae.