First Birthday – Party Prep

bird day party - blog

Wrenn is turning ONE in two weeks. How is that possible? I swear just yesterday I was 800 months pregnant, lamenting to my husband that I would never go into labor, as I was stuck on the couch on bedrest, eating Chick-fil-a and binge-watching How I Met Your Mother on Netflix (y’all, Netflix got me through a very difficult pregnancy and the first two months of Wrenn’s life). And then my water broke, and next thing I knew, I was in the hospital holding my beautiful, big-eyed baby girl.

And now that beautiful, big-eyed baby girl is about to be ONE. ONE! We’ve decided to avoid the first birthday insanity and host a family-only birthday party with a simple dinner and cupcakes. But of course I had to design a special invitation and a FEW special decorating touches for the big day.


It was only fitting that we declare this a BIRD-day party in honor of our little Wrenn-bird. We

found the idea a few months ago from a greeting card while on one of Mr. Right’s secret dates. The card had a bird with a crown and it simply said, “Happy BIRD-day.” From there, we spent the evening brainstorming fun ways to use this theme.

I’ve been on my best behavior and haven’t gone crazy buying decorations OR gifts, but I did decide that Wrenn would have to have a special birthday dress. I found this pattern on Etsy and did a practice run with scrap fabric (see photo) to make sure I could do it. I’m in love with the way it turned out! I’ve bought special BIRD-day fabric, and Wrenn will proudly debut her new dress at the party. (Lord, please don’t let her have a blow-out diaper in her new dress before the party starts!)

I can’t wait to fill you in on the rest of the details! Also, in the meantime, don’t forget about my little Etsy Shop! That shop helps fund my fabric addiction.


PrintCheck out my newest print: Every Day I Love You.

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It’s my birthday

Happy birthday to me. How do we celebrate birthdays around here?
With cake balls from the same lady who made our wedding cake. You haven’t lived until you’ve had Colleen’s strawberry cake balls dipped in white chocolate. Oh my word.
We bought two dozen, so it will be my birthday for a very long time. Don’t worry, I’m choosing to share with Mr. Right and with various family members who ask nicely.
I also celebrated with a special birthday breakfast cooked by my chef husband. A bagel, egg, and bacon with homemade plum preserves. It was amazing. 
Speaking of food, I also celebrated with a birthday lunch with a few of my closest girlfriends… and a pedicure. Because nothing says happy 31st birthday to me like pretty toenails and a foot massage. And a strawberry cake (do you see a pattern here?).
I had a birthday dinner with my side of the family… and more food. My mama is an amazing cook… and then we ate more cake balls.
Tomorrow night I’m having Mr. Right’s side of the family over for a joint birthday dinner (my father-in-law has a birthday two days after mine) and Mr Right is making homemade chicken fried steak. I’m sure it’s the low-fat version.
And then I get two Thanksgivings. And I heard a rumor we may go to Joe T. Garcia’s sometime this weekend.
Someone sign me up for a 10K before I double in size! Hurry!
I bet you’re wondering what Mr. Right got me for my birthday. He’s going to turn this…
Into this
That’s right, he’s framing our master bathroom mirror. Ours will look a lot like this, but he painted it black. It’s currently lying on the garage floor, ready to be installed. I just love being married to man who knows how to turn my wild hairs into reality.

Speaking of wild hairs… on a whim I decided to sew ruffles for my Christmas tree. It’s the absolute best sewing project ever because (1) you don’t have to iron your fabric, (2) you don’t have to cut a straight line, and (3) you don’t have to sew a straight line. It’s like magic, I tell you.

Since this is Thankfulness month on my little blog, and since I’m three days behind (but it’s my birthday… so I get a pass, right?), I thought I’d just list a few more things I’m thankful for, which can count for #20, 21 and 22:
I am thankful for strawberry birthday cake and girlfriends who love pedicures as much as me and family who calls and sings happy birthday and coffee being brought to me in bed and birthday breakfasts and getting birthday cards in the mail.
I’m also thankful for this blog, which started four years ago on my 27th birthday

Do you want to know how YOU can absolutely make my day on my birthday? Leave me a comment on my blog– it would make me feel all sparkly and distract me from thinking about how I’m now 31.  I know you’re out there – somehow I watched my visits quadruple this month. I’m sure 80% of those readers are related to me (hi mom, Mr. Right, and to my mother-in-law), but that still leaves a few friends and strangers out there reading, and it would just make my birthday if you would say hello. Won’t you?

Speaking of 31, I’ll leave you with a list of other famous people who are 31. It’s kind of an awesome-not-at-all-old-at-least-that’s-what-I-will-remind-myself club.

Venus Williams
Ben Savage – Boy Meets World
Michelle Williams
The oldest Hanson
Kristen Bell
Channing Tatum

I guess this means I’m joining the cool kids club. I hope that oldest Hanson saved me a seat.

Hello Thirty

I never really thought I’d be 30. It always seemed like such a far-off adult number, and I’ve always felt like a kid. But here it is, something that seemed to be lurking in the shadows, and then one day I looked up and I was almost 30. And now tomorrow, it’ll officially be here.

So in honor of my birthday, I thought I’d write a letter to myself at 20, to pass on the wisdom I wish I had known on that birthday.
Dear 20-year-old Bethe,
Life at 20 is exciting. You’re in your first apartment, with your first roommates, living in a room barely large enough to hold a twin bed, and yet you think you have made it BIG because it’s your very own. Life is about to get much bigger. Your teenage years were hard, like almost any teenager, not knowing who you are or what you want to be, but trust me, your twenties will be SO MUCH BETTER.
First… dump that college boyfriend of yours. You’re not going to marry him.
And guess what… I know that at 20 you think everybody who doesn’t get married by 23 is an old maid, destined to be a broom skirt-wearing librarian. You think your life will be so unfulfilling if you have to spend part of it alone. But trust me, you’re going to live a lot of adventures over the next few years, and you’ll be so glad it worked out this way.
You’re going to have many more roommates. Some are going to become life-long friends. Others aren’t going to work out, but you’ll learn a lot of lessons about how to live with other people, how to be less selfish, and how to love people who are very different from yourself.
You’re going to live in some RANDOM places. You’ll live in a run-down apartment on the wrong side of the tracks, and yes, you’ll even hear occasional gunshots. But don’t be alarmed, you’ll survive with nothing more than a car robbery. Then you’ll leave the ghetto for (gasp) your parents’ house. That will be such a glamorous way to spend your first six months out of college (not really). But you’ll learn to love living with your parents because they’re actually pretty cool. You’ll live with them again when you’re 25 while you build your house, and you’ll all become hopelessly addicted to this silly show called Dancing With the Stars. In between you’ll live in a swanky apartment and an old rent house with a heater that barely works.
You’ll learn to live alone. It seems like the last thing a people-person like yourself should do, and while it’ll definitely be lonely at times, you’ll soon make so many friends that it won’t matter. And, it’ll toughen you up, make you brave enough to stay alone, make you learn how to fix things, and force you to become more independent. You’re going to need that.
You’re going to build a house. By yourself. It’ll be one of the best experiences of your life.
You’re going to suffer heartbreak. Actually, you’re going to suffer heartbreak a several times. Each time will get harder, but it’ll also make you stronger. Each time you’ll learn more about yourself, and what traits you want (and need) in a man. You’ll never be particularly good at breakups. Prepare to do a lot of crying, drink a lot of Sonic strawberry milkshakes, and spend a lot of time hanging out with your family, who will make you laugh so much that your heart will start to heal. And during those times when you feel most alone, you’ll get to experience Christ’s love at its fullest. You’ll grow more and in the end, the pain will bring great growth. So stick it out.
You’re going to finally learn how to study your Bible. Like, REALLY study your Bible, not just listen to preachers and teachers explain it. You’re finally going to open it up for yourself and devour the pages and learn the Word for yourself. It’s going to be life changing. You’ll love it so much that it will become your passion to help other girls do the same thing. Yes, I realize at 20 you don’t really enjoy hanging out with other girls. But someday it’ll become your ministry. And here’s a little secret… someday you’ll become a minister’s wife.
You’re going to travel the world. I realize at 20 you’ve only been to a few states, but in the next ten years you’re going to visit 11 countries and a dozen more states. You’ll realize that your favorite city in the world is Paris, that Colombia has the most amazing food, and that the Greek islands are paradise. You’ll grow to love other cultures, which will help you love people better when you get back home.
I realize at 20 you’ve never even run a 5k, but you’re going to finish a half marathon. No joke. You’re going to take salsa lessons, learn how to lift weights, play in a church softball league, and every Sunday afternoon for about 5 years, you’re going to play flag football. Crazy, huh? You won’t be any GOOD at most of those things, but you’re going to do them anyway.
You’re going to make the most amazing friends in your 20s. Your best friends will come from your church, which is going to have a huge impact on your life. You’ll gain friends of all ages and each one will teach you something about life, and yourself. And those little sisters of yours? I know they seem so young now, but trust me, they’re going to become your very closest friends. Soon you’ll be dancing at their weddings.
You’re going to find a career that you love. At 20 you have no clue what you want to do… trust me, you’ll end up changing your major about five times. And that’s okay, because soon you’ll settle into public relations, and eventually you’ll get your dream job. You’re going to get to do so many fun things – plan black tie galas, design billboards, get to know Santa Claus on a first name basis (you’re in charge of the Christmas activities at your work). You’re even going to get a master’s degree. It’s going to be exhausting juggling night school and work, but you’ll survive and you’ll never regret it.
And just when you start to wonder if you’re going to be single forever… you’re going to meet the most amazing man. At first you’ll just be friends, and then one day you’re going to look at him and something about him is going to fascinate you. Lucky for you, he’s going to experience the same thing at the very same time, and next thing you know you’ll be madly in love. He’s going to treat you like a queen, pursue you in a way that speaks to your heart, encourage you, love on you, and serve you in a sacrificial way. You’re not going to know what to do with yourself… so just enjoy every minute of it. In the meantime, don’t stress… enjoy your singleness while you have it, and trust that the Lord loves you, and has good plans for you, and knows what you need more than you do. When Mr. Wright comes along, he’ll be worth the wait. And he’ll be an amazing cook.
I could tell you more, but you’ll have to discover it for yourself. Just remember… never give up. Your twenties will be amazing and scary and exhausting a total adventure. Relish them. And don’t take yourself so seriously.
I’ll see you at 30.
ps–Here’s some old birthday posts: 25, 27, 28, and 29.

Surprise! (and other various things)

So, they got me. I sort of thought everybody was too busy to remember my birthday, which is understandable since my birthday always falls right before Thanksgiving. As it turns out, my sweet friends were secretly planning me a surprise birthday party, and boy was I surprised. I fell right into their trap, thinking I was going to dinner with a friend from work, and then when our reservations fell through, good old predictable me convinced him to go to my favorite restaurant, which was conveniently next door. In we walk, and there in front of me were 30 of my closest friends. I was so stunned that it took me a minute to realize that it was MY party (for a split second I thought maybe my friends had planned some random get-together and just not invited me… it seemed to be the only reasonable explanation at the moment, as everybody stared at me and nobody remembered to say “surprise!”). But it ended up being a very memorable night, and I’m so thankful to have some very sweet friends and a wonderful middle sister who is also quite devious.
Some other various things:
  • I got the most amazing birthday present this year–one I’ll treasure for years to come. The girls in my Sunday School class each sent me their very favorite scripture, along with a fashionable flip book to keep my own favorites in (because a fashionable girl must have a fashionable scripture catalogue). I loved that when one of the girls asked my sister what I would like, she replied, “Bethe loves scripture! Get her some scripture!” IIt’s so true, and I love that they were willing to share their own little secret treasures with me. It’s so neat to know these girls, what they’ve gone through, what they struggle with, what they have overcome, and then to see what their go-to scripture is. I am so touched by their thoughtfulness.
  • I had a wonderful birthday dinner with my family tonight… including my new brother, added just this past June. I must say that as a gal who grew up in a family full of women, it’s quite fun to have a little brother (and I’m so thankful that my sister married one that we get along with so well). However, we’re at a total loss as to what to buy him for Christmas. We’re on a hunt for something manly and wonderful for him.
  • Not only did I have a birthday this weekend (the big 2-9… gulp), but I also got visited by the Asthma Fairy. It started on Friday and has now lasted four days. All of the meds and the coughing have caused me to almost completely lose my voice, making me sound like a boy in puberty… which is fitting, because my face looks like that of a hormonal teenager. I’m not sure what happened, but the Asthma Fairy was accompanied by her friend, the Pimple Fairy. I think both guests have overstayed their welcome. They need to leave and send their cousin, the Hot Christian Guy Fairy.
  • I turned in my thesis tonight. I’m not sure I’ve ever been giddy after finishing a paper before, but tonight as I left the communications building I felt like turning cartwheels. One more week and I’ll be completely finished with all assignments. Praise. The. Lord.
  • Did I mention I’m close to starting a book? It has been a life goal, and I have finally identified my story, named my main character, and worked out a good bit of the plot. I have much more to develop before I begin, but when I have free time, my mind is now filled with what-if’s and story brainstorming. This is one of my plans for 2010. You know, that life AFTER graduate school.
  • I saw New Moon Saturday night (happy birthday to me). I liked this movie much better than the first one, and even better than the book. I think the fact that there were so many shirtless boys running around on the screen might have tipped the scales in the movie’s favor. (sigh) This is one movie I may have to see again.
Must get to bed… the dark circles under my eyes from a lack of sleep will definitely not serve as a compliment to the pimples on my face. Oh, the joys of being a 29-year-old teenager.
PS–This is the two-year anniversary of this blog. Check out my other birthday posts here and here and here. Happy birthday to me.

Happy birthday to me

Today is my birthday. The Big 2-8. 

It’s also the one-year anniversary of this blog. Here’s the original, written last year. 
And here’s a throw-back to another birthday post on the old blog
I seem to get a bit sentimental on my birthday. But for some reason, not this year. I’m in a pretty good place, one of those transitional spots where I’m on my way somewhere, but not there yet. But as I travel to my next destination, I find myself happy, content, and thankful to be surrounded by some pretty neat people. And surprisingly enough, I don’t feel the least bit introspective. Maybe I’m just too full with chocolate birthday cake to worry about much.
Tonight I had a birthday party… a retro roller-skating party with about 25 friends and family members. It was a real hoot–I promise to post pictures very soon. I felt like a kid again… possibly because I wore a glo-necklace, raced boys on rollerblades, and had my mom there taking pictures. Yep, I may be 28, but that doesn’t mean I have to act like it.

Birth of a new blog

Today is my birthday. I’m 27, which sounds surprisingly adult. My mother was 27 when she had me, and I always figured that she was a grown-up. Now I wonder. Because I still feel young and uncertain. Like a little girl playing dress-up in her mom’s high heels. Other days I feel seasoned and savvy, like I can conquer the world.

Maybe it’s the combination of my birthday and the Thanksgiving holiday that makes me so sentimental. I’ve been thinking of reviving my blog for a few weeks now, and I figure this is the best day to begin. The birth of a new blog.

I’ve arleady done this once. I kept a blog for about two years. It recorded mostly silly thoughts… purposely superficial. I did that by design. I don’t know how this one will work. I suspect that this one will be similar. Mostly soft and fluffy, with some current events and my reflections on the world to add flavor.

But first, we should meet. I used to live here.