A Hootenanny and a 1st Birthday!!

We had a wonderful weekend, celebrating with our little ONE year old!  Ava officially turned one on Saturday, the 17th, and from the moment she woke up, we were celebrating!  Travy brought some balloons home on Saturday morning, which she immediately loved. When he walked in the door and she saw him holding the balloons, she opened her mouth really big and said "OH", pointing and grinning.  It was hilarious!  We realized she'd never really seen balloons up close before!
I got all of her gifts wrapped up and ready for her to tear apart.  I know this looks crazy for a first birthday, but it wasn't really as grand as it seems :) Just a few things she needed and 2 toys.  BUT, it's all in the presentation, right??
We had a fun, quiet day with just the 3 of us, until my Mom and Dad arrived for her big family party that night.  As you can see, getting her to pose for ANY pictures this weekend, was more than a challenge.  She's definitely more opinionated now that she's one :) 
But sitting on her car did the trick :) 
She wore her new dress and sweater from Aunt Stacie and Uncle Jesse and it was so sweet on her!  
We love it!
She also got a darling, little, pink camping chair that is precious and just right for her.  I'm sure we'll be taking it with us to many things this summer and fall!  
Because Miss Ava is only one, we decided we would wait another year or so to do a party with friends, instead we chose to celebrate with family because we have so many family members who are in town.  On my side of the family, April is a huge month for birthdays!  There are like 11 of us or something who were born in April.  This year in particular was especially big because there were 4 of us celebrating BIG milestone included.  So, we decided we would do a big combined party, celebrating the milestone birthdays and my cousin Brian came up with the idea to do an old-fashioned hootenanny!  Hilarious, right??
In case you'd like a dictionary definition, a Hootenanny is explained here:
hoot·en·an·ny  (htn-n)
n. pl. hoot·en·an·nies
1. An informal performance by folk singers, typically with participation by the audience.

Think "Dan in Real Life", when they have the family talent show.  That's exactly what we did!  On this particular branch of my family tree, there are quite a few musically talented people, but not necessarily within my own immediate family!  We have singers, songwriters, recording artists and lots of untapped potential :) We had serenades to spouses, original songs sung, tap dancing, jazz dancing, jokes, and even a certain little 1st grade boy who played "twinkle, twinkle little star" on his armpits!  THAT was hilarious :) It made us laugh to think what our kids will contribute someday...maybe they'll be musical, but if they take after Travis and I, they'll probably be doing some kind of trick with a ball!  Like, "How many free throws can you shoot in a row" or "how many tricks can you do with soccer ball??"  After our talent show, we upped the energy and all danced along to the wii game, "Just Dance."  Have you played it??  It's super fun and a total workout!  I'm pretty sure everyone joined it for at least one song!  We were exhausted when we got home, but it was such a fun night!!  I have a video of the dancing, but so far I haven't talked Travis into letting me post it :) I'll work on him...

We rented a clubhouse and all 30 of got together for a rip-roaring good time!

As you can see, here are the big milestones in our family...
Me-30 (I'm still in denial, but my day is approaching!)
My cousin Amy-40
My uncle Ron-70
We knew this would be a fun way to celebrate Ava's big day!
She was such a good little sport, playing with her car while we waited to eat.  We were laughing at her here because she had a little "Marilyn Monroe" moment when she stood over an air vent and her skirt blew in the breeze!  She must have liked it because she continued to stand there, dancing and grinning!  Uh oh :) 
That's cute when you're one, but we're going to be in trouble if she's still doing it when she's 13!!
My cousin Rhonda and my Mom
My cousin Brian, my Mom and Travis
The cutest birthday girl!  
Getting ready for her second cake experience :) 
We brought 2 cakes, one that was a pull-apart cupcake cake, and a free one from a local grocery store!
Sadly, I am doing everything I can to stay out of the leftovers we brought home :) 
It took her a few minutes, but eventually she got her hands in there again and smeared the frosting all over her face!  We have learned that she is not a cake girl however, she had no interest in eating any of it!
Just a few adoring cousins to cheer her on!  Ava is not short on love or attention, can you tell??
We LOVE it!  We're so thankful to have so many sweet family members for her to grow up with.
Pride almost kept me from posting this, but I'm doing it anyway!  This is the 4 of us who have rather "big" birthdays this month!  BUT, I could not look worse after dancing all night :) 
This was taken at 11:00 pm!
Who keeps their one year old out until 11pm???
She was an angel considering how tired she must have been!

Because we had such a big day on Saturday, Travis and I decided to have Ava open her gifts from us, last night.  That's the beauty of a one year old, she had no idea we were asking her to wait!
Her greatest joy seemed to be playing with the tissue paper and trying to offer it to Ryley to eat.  
We could have gotten away with no gifts, had we known how much she'd enjoy this!!
Ryley was happy to participate in the mess :) 
We gave her a couple of outfits, some new jammies, and a little people princess carriage, but she only had eyes for her new shopping cart and its accessories!
It took her only a few minutes before she was cruising around our house!
She seems to have some kind of fascination with the ketchup and mustard bottles :) 
I think she likes it!

We had a wonderful weekend, it was fun to share her big day with our family.   Hard for both of us to believe that a year has already come and gone, but what a wonderful blessing our sweet Ava has been to us.  We can't wait to experience another year of Ava!!


Jesse said...

Happy Birthday Ava Page (and Mommy)!!! Wish we could have been there (but also thankful I didn't have to participate in any singing).

petrii said...

Happy birthday to you both!!! It looks like you had a rip-roaring good time =)

Y'all are so cute ~~ have a Blessed week,

Heather said...

What fun!!!! Happy b-day to Ava...and all of you April babies!!!

Jesse and Stacie said...

Love the dress and sweater on her!! And that pink chair is adorable :) I'm sure she loves her new shopping cart. Happy Birthday Ava girl!!!

Sonya said...

Happy Birthday to both of you! There is a Hootenanny in our area every weekend! They even put it on the local TV station! That's funny that you had one to celebrate birthdays! Honestly, 30 isn't that bad!

Ron and Peggy said...

That looks like one Happy birthday girl. The family party is more than enough and has got to be less stressful than having a bunch of toddlers. 30! I thought you were years away! See? Lookin' good!