What IS it with me and having holiday babies??
Finn was born on the 23rd of December, and we went home from the hospital on Christmas Day. Eli was born the 5th of July and I remember lying awake that night listening to the random POW of a still-enthusiastic bottle rocket at 3:00 AM, wondering if these contractions were real or the fake kind.
So three years have come and gone and now the baby is a boy.
As usual, we had a small party at home with family and a few close friends. Hubs fired up the grill and my dad brought homemade ice cream. My job was to furnish The Cake.
I don't fancy myself a super crafty DIY person, but we've been doing the homemade birthday cakes for a few years now and I was stressing about this one. The boys get to pick what kind of cake they get and it's up to me to figure out a way to make it happen.
Samurai Jack seemed simple enough - I got some small toys online and found a party supply store with all their SJ stuff on clearance. I found some red & black candies - a hodgepodge of licorice, Twizzlers, spanish peanuts, and candy blackberries & raspberries.
Thank you, Fruit Rollup gods, for providing the orange-cherry swirl kind that made the most perfect flames when cut with a leaf-shaped cutter! The platform was an iced rice crispy treat.
The cake itself was devil's food and iced with homemade buttercream. HUGE thanks to Aunt T, who is the Icing Queen! My frosting skills have much to be desired and she came over to help early that morning.
A bouquet of swords from the dollar store also served as party favors.
The candy sushi turned out pretty good!
Last year on the HH I chronicled the story of Eli's arrival. Since you know that already I won't rehash it here, but I will record some of my predictions on his character for prosperity's sake.
Eli is our brute. He's the brawn to Finn's brain, the sheer will to his brother's nuance. But don't be fooled - that is no indication of Eli's intelligence. He's just more direct with his manipulation. He's cute, he knows it, and he totally uses it to his advantage. It's the same trait I can see we'll need to stay on top of to make sure it doesn't morph into cockiness as he gets older. He's more likely to cuddle with you and still asks to be held and carried occasionally... never mind he weighs the same (if not more) than his older brother. His hugs are fierce and frequent, and thankfully outnumbered by his outbursts... barely.
So far, Eli has shown more interest & proficiency in team sports than Finn, tossing a ball with strength & accuracy or picking up on the way the game is played. He loves the water and doesn't mind getting his face wet in the pool. HE EATS LIKE A STARVED HORSE. Thai food, veggies, all kinds of meat, Chinese food, pasta, fruit - I honestly can't think of something he won't eat right now. He's even been known to sneak sips of our coffee if we aren't watching him.
Once, when Hotwheels Hubs was traveling for work, he was hanging out in the hotel bar and met an interesting character who claimed to be an "International Astrologer" with clients all over the world. (Hubs must have a face that encourages people to talk because this kind of thing happens to him all. the. time. He should've been a bartender or a therapist or a priest because folks want to confess their sins and discuss the details of their lives with him without him ever encouraging that kind of interaction.)
Anyway, they got to talking and International Astrologer asked about hub's family. When he learned a little about Eli he got excited.
IA: "He sounds like a Crystal Child!"
Hubs: "Umm... OK. What's that?"
IA proceeded to rattle off characteristics of the revered Crystal Children.
Hubs proceeded to laugh.