The night before Luke's birthday, I blew up a bunch of big colorful balloons and Isaac helped me sneak into Luke's room and leave them all around the floor so that he would have a fun surprise to wake up to.
We opened presents first thing in the morning so that Luke (and Isaac) could play with the new toys all day long, and so that Charlie could watch before he head to leave for work. Luke got a lot of help from his brother with the actual opening of the gifts, but he was happy just playing with the paper anyway.
After Luke was all dressed and ready for the day in his bright blue polo shirt, I was struck by just how adorable he looked playing with all those colorful balloons. I had the crazy idea to try to pull together a little photo shoot in his room. There are lots of reasons why I should not be a photographer. The fact that Luke does not ever really hold still didn't help much either.
Isaac had speech and karate that day, but after we were done with all that I called up some friends and we headed over to the Woodbridge lagoon to play for a few hours. Luke sat and played in the sand for awhile, and then eventually discovered that he could crawl around in the water. There is a shallow ledge of water with a sandy bottom all around the edge of the pool and it is just perfect for crawling babies.
After a nap and some dinner, it was time for birthday cake! I made a chocolate cake with chocolate frosting, from scratch and with all organic ingredients. (The frosting was especially yummy and Charlie told me later he thought it may have been the best cake I've ever made.) We had a larger cake for the family to eat and then I made a little one for Luke to help himself to.
I decorated Luke's cake with some fresh strawberries on top, and just as I suspected he ate all of those off first. He loves fruit! He seemed a little unsure about what to do with the rest of the cake, so I helped cut a few little bites for him. He didn't eat much of it, but he sure had fun playing with it!
He dug his little fingers into the center of the cake and squashed it all into tiny crumbs. Then he had fun transferring the crumb pile from the plate to the tray and back again. It was kind of hilarious to watch. Isaac got a good laugh too and told me "Mom, Luke is a MESS!" And Cracker was in heaven with all of the chocolate cake crumbs that made their way to the floor.
Luke got all cleaned up in the bath and ready for bed. He usually goes right to sleep when I put him down, but for some reason he kept crying and wanting to be held that night. I rocked him to sleep a few times but every time I laid him down he would cry again, so I sat and rocked with him till nearly midnight. Though I was feeling a bit weary, I also appreciated that extra cuddle time since he rarely holds still long enough to be rocked at all these days.
The next day Luke had his 12 month check-up at the doctor. My suspicions were confirmed - he is becoming a little shrimp! Isaac was always off the charts for height as a baby, and I've noticed that Luke has not grown nearly as fast. Especially in the past few months. He measured 29 1/4" in height (25th percentile) and 20 lbs 7 oz in weight (10th-25th percentile), with a very average 18 1/4" head (50th percentile). The doctor also noted that he has a small hernia that should close up on it's own over the next couple of years, and a blocked tear duct which will also hopefully clear up on it's own soon.
We had fun celebrating Luke's first year and are excited to see what the next one holds in store. Happy Birthday Luke! We love you!