Happy 8th Birthday, Claire!

Claire turned 8 in January. I have a hard time wrapping my head around that fact. My baby? Is eight? As in eight years? Eight whole years? Claire is quickly becoming a strong, empowered young lady with a penchant for singing and dancing and doing things exactly how she wants to do them no matter what. I have no idea where she’s learned that last one.

For her birthday she went to Altitude, an indoor trampoline park, with her brother and cousin and then stopped by the outlet malls and came home for cake and presents. I went back and forth about having a party for Claire. It’s hard when a kid’s birthday is in early January because people are just coming back from winter break (or in our case, hadn’t even gotten back) and if you send the invites out before break parents are likely to forget with all of the hubbub of the holiday season and if you wait until they’re back in school it’s very short notice. Last year we did a joint party1 so we could have the party in the middle of the month, but Claire decided she’d rather have just a small family celebration rather than share a party. Worked for us! We had Baksin Robbins ice cream cake and lots of fun and Andrew’s sister was able to visit from back home on the east coast so it was super special for Claire.

Happy 8th Birthday, Logan!

Okay now I really have a hard time believing that Logan is seven. Since when? Where’s my pudgy toddler with the permanent wrist rolls and an uncanny ability to circumvent all childproofing mechanisms? He definitely still has a knack for locks and puzzles, but all of a sudden he’s this big, tall kid. And he has opinions about his hair! He went for his monthly haircut with his dad and instead of the high fade with a side swept fringe I usually instruct, he chose tapered sides with a mohawk and some part detailing. He looks unbelievably adorable! Sorry, not adorable, he looks cool. So cool.

He also has started to show an interest in what he wears. I typically dress him in chinos, a polo and a button up or cardigan to adhere to his school uniform on the weekdays, and chinos and polo or tee and button up to adhere to my sense of style on the weekends. But as our neighborhood was thankfully spared from nearly all of Harvey’s devastation2 there are a lot of new families moving in from harder hit areas, and since we’re the only elementary school in the district with a uniform dress code the code was lifted for the rest of the school year to alleviate any burden that might put on families trying to recover. So that means the kids get free dress everyday, and Logan has decided he really likes joggers3 and graphic tees.

Logan’s birthday plans were rather derailed by an ice storm that brought Houston to a stand still. The kids only went to school for one day that week, and that one day he was able to bring in cupcakes and balloons for his special education class which made him very happy. On his birthday we all huddled inside the house and avoided driving anywhere, but Andrew did venture out to get a cake and balloons to make the best of his birthday. Logan got some new trucks and Lego and Playstation games and had chocolate cake so he was perfectly happy.

My Birthday Weekend

Yes, another birthday in January. Mine! My twin sister and I were supposed to go downtown for some sushi at one of those sushi places with the moving bar but someone flaked out4. So instead Andrew and the kids treated me to Outback where I had my usual Alice Springs Chicken with a lobster tail. I don’t care how basic a Blooming Onion is, I’ll always love it.

Apparently the lobster at Outback awakened some kind of seafood craving monster inside of me because the very next night I was desperate for lobster tails. Andrew grilled some for me along with shrimp and mushrooms because he loves me and he knows the best way to show that is to feed me. Also there were amazing fish tacos with tilapia and avocado salad a few nights before that. Seriously, he knows how to feed me. We also went to Chipotle that weekend because it’s in the same shopping center as the salon Andrew and Logan go to and also it’s right next to Nothing Bundt Cakes, where I had to get my birthday cakes. Also Chipotle is a magical place where my kids all sit still and be quiet because they’re busy shoveling their food into their mouths.

To celebrate our birthdays my twin sister and I begrudgingly shared seven or eight bundtlets from Nothing Bundt Cake with the rest of our families. We had lemon (her favorite), carrot cake, red velvet, vanilla, chocolate chocolate chip, strawberries and cream, and confetti. And they were all delicious!

Houston Tea Festival

So the weekend of my birthday was also the weekend of the Houston Tea Festival’s Harry Potter themed tea festival! Uh, heck yes! Andrew and I went with the kids and they had such a good time. We saw a pottery demonstration by Gnome and Fairy Pottery. The Daughters of the British Empire Sir Malcolm Sargent Chapter had a lovely table set up that was designed to look like The Three Broomsticks. The kids got to try some chamomile tea with milk in it, like the Brits do, and they hated it. We’ve always sweetened their tea with honey so when Claire says, “oh I want to go to a tea festival, I love tea!” What she really means is she loves honey. Thankfully the next table we stopped at was Nando’s Honey Bee Farm. The kids got some honey candy and honey sticks. Not far from there was TeazSol, which had these adorable TeaMales! Instead of paper or fabric tea bags, she used corn husks, like a tamale. I had to buy a few because they were just so cool. On the way out I had to stop at Sew Jelly‘s table. I scooped up her watermelon jam and a jam that tastes exactly like sweet tea.

I wore my silver phoenix and snake Alex + Ani bangles with an endless knot bracelet with the prettiest gray crystals. I considered wearing a gold stack because I have two phoenix and two snake bangles in gold, but I didn’t want anyone mistaking me for a Gryffindor.

Overall January was a crazy busy month that went by in a blur.

How was your January?


  1. Well we were supposed to, but I ended up being hospitalized with strep, mono, and an abscess

  2. The city actually started a construction on a series of massive drainage ponds on the retired golf course that runs through the middle of our neighborhood to help with the typical spring floods and even though it isn’t even complete yet it still helped immensely with the historic rains Harvey brought. 

  3. Especially these ones, which are like canvas sweatpants? I don’t get it, but he loves them. 

  4. Admittedly going downtown on a Friday night would have been hellish. 

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  • Mariah Kaercher

    It sounds like you were busy, cute kids! :)

  • Birthdays are so much fun!!! My brother also had his birthday this January and I baked an Overwatch banana and caramel cake for him!!!

    Love,
    Olga from Myme

    • Happy belated birthday to your brother. That cake sounds delicious, and awesome!

  • Happy belated birthday to Claire, Logan, and yourself! I’m happy to hear that your kids are growing up pretty well! I don’t have kids, but I can imagine how fast they can grow!

    Your birthday celebration looks legit! Love the lobster! I didn’t know there’s seafood at a steakhouse, haha! It sounds like you’ve been having a great time with the kids and adventuring to different places! The Tea Festival looks really neat, especially with the Harry Potter Theme!

    exquisitely.me

    • Thank you for the birthday wishes! We did have a lot of fun, even though it was uncharacteristically cold in Houston so we didn’t get to venture out too much.

  • Emily

    Aw I love this little recap of your January – so many birthdays! I can’t imagine how strange it must be to watch your children grow up – when they were once so tiny! My January was a pretty good one – I had a New York trip for my own birthday, lots of incredible food and even a job promotion! Not bad for a usually miserable month eh?

    Musings & More

    • Happy belated birthday! A New York trip sounds like an awesome way to celebrate. Congratulations on the promotion, that’s awesome!

  • What a happy celebrations! My birthday was on January too and had a picnic on the beach which is also in my current blogpost. You must have had so much fun looking at the photos, hurray to January babies!

    http://www.busyandfab.com

    • Happy belated birthday! It seems like January is a popular month for birthdays. A picnic at the beach is an awesome birthday celebration. Last January we were at the beach around my daughter’s birthday, but this January it was actually cold!