You Are 2

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Oh, what a weekend it was. Amelia's little party was truly wonderful. She had such an awesome time, and so did we. Yesterday was her actual birthday, and the three of us drove out along the old highway to Multnomah Falls for lunch, then came home and made lasagna and had cupcakes for dinner. She insisted on wearing her party hat at all times. It was a perfect day (except for the couple of times she snapped the elastic from the hat against her cheek and started bawling). She went to bed an hour or so past her bedtime, and had no nap all day. She is a partier!!!

So many toys, so many beautiful presents from everyone. Andy and I worked on ours for most of the summer — that's turning into such a sweet tradition for us. Andy's mermaid (from this pattern) — it was an epic experience. He worked on it every lunch hour for two months, and pretty much every waking free hour he was home. I tried to help him with a little bit of it and the hook was so small and the yarn so shreddy I seriously thought I was going to scream every time I picked it up. I truly don't know how he did it. He also made her a crocheted Clover doll. He is incredible. The mermaid's name is Ethel Shirley. She'll get her hat and her life-ring for Christmas. :) The doll I got for her was one I'd been coveting for years (from Happy to See You) — major splurge, couldn't resist. I made the beddy-bye-basket from this pattern (more or less, I had to add a lot more rounds because my yarn was thinner), her dress from this pattern, her nightgown from this pattern, and her sweater from here. I made the pillows and mattress and little quilt for the basket just out of some little pieces of fabric and trim that I had. Naturally, she is vaguely indifferent to both of our dolls. Naturally, Andy and I both prop each of our dolls up in front of her several thousand times a day. "I think she likes mine better." "No, she likes mine better." "No, mine." Etc. Her birthday dress and pinafore I made from a 1972 Simplicity pattern, #5277. I used a brown vintage calico I had, and some Liberty Betsy Ann in gray for the pinafore. I have to take pictures of the totally rad play food my sister Susie made for Amelia. It's incredible, and I will find out where she got the patterns, too. She also received some other really excellent presents I will photograph, too.

I had the best time over the past few weeks gathering ideas for her party. The balloon/lantern collection is ubiquitous, but oh boy did it please a two-year-old who went out for a walk with her grandma and came home to find it suddenly and magically floating above the dining-room table on Friday afternoon. That was cool. Andy and I made it together, and it was so much fun to do. Once it was up we decided it needed something distinctly "2"ish. He cut the number out of a thick piece of styrofoam, and then I covered the edges with fabric tape and the front and back with glued-on fabric (I just traced the styrofoam number and cut out the fabric — super easy). Her cake I copied from this adorable cake that I just couldn't get out of my mind (I think I pinned it ages ago). I used this cake recipe and my mom's frosting recipe (I call it Cloudburst Frosting). One of the best parts of the day was the rousing rendition of "Happy Birthday to You" sung by all of us just before she blew out her candles — it really sounded like a chorus to me; it was truly awesome — and she looked around in complete wonder and delight at this big, bustling, beautiful family, fabulously doubled in size with her amazing birthfamily. All love. We are all just so blessed in this. I also loved watching her feed her little deer some coffee out of a wee teacup after the party as we sat quietly together and played and talked. Oh, how I love it all. I absolutely love it. Two. The best two years ever. Darling, wonderful, greatest girl. I love you so.


Happy BIrthday to your family <3! It looks like a really sweet time was had by all. Your homemade birthday party looks both low-key and rowdy and fun. It's so great to see a kid's party that's not all about the stuff, but about being together and having a blast. And I love the post party waterfall walk <3

Happy happy 2nd birthday to your beautiful little girl - what an awesome party! How lovely to see her growing up so fast, she is just so sweet - cant believe she is two already!? Beautiful photos too!

so lovely! all of it :) the floating lanterns.... that adorable cake... that adorable little girl... what a wonderful party!

Oneweirdword says: October 19, 2014 at 11:52 AM

That feeding the deer tea photo is so cute I almost can't stand it! She resembles Andy a lot; how wonderful!

I ALWAYS love your posts, but this is the best! So sweet! Happy birthday to your little girl!

Of importance to mention, I love how your husband MADE SOMETHING for your daughter, much less a crocheted mermaid! I hope she will always understand/know how loved she is!

And second, those little fingers holding that teacup. By the handle no less! That's skill :D!

Absolutely love everything about this party! Happy Birthday Mimi, Happy 2 years of parental bliss to you and Andy! Will be stealing that cake idea but with dinosaurs for my son. Not sure how poor old T-rex will cope with the tea cups though....

Happy 2nd birthday to sweet Amelia! Beautiful handmade pretties by you and Andy- I can't believe he made that mermaid!
Her party is so pretty. I love all the decorations. I too bought one of those Happy to See You dolls for Scarlet for a birthday and she sits in a cradle that I had as a little girl. I might like her better then my daughter as she is mostly an animal lover (read: huge animal issue in this house) though she does give her dolls some girl time.
Your photos and stories never fail to sweeten my day and show so much beauty in the world.

So wonderful! Happy birthday sweet girl!

Happy Birthday, Amelia! What a darling, lovely, amazing party!

Love her cake, it's the best!

What a fantastic cake! The whole party looks beautiful.

claire jenkins says: October 21, 2014 at 05:32 PM

Thank you so SO MUCH for sharing these two years (and all the years prior) with all of us. It brings me so much joy to see you get the gift you so wonderfully deserved. Thank you. And I was secretly hoping that was an Audrey puppy! But a Clover puppy is just as sweet ;)

Happy belated birthday to your sweetie pie! Adorable girl, party, and home! Very sweet images you have captured...:)

THAT CAKE!! It's just perfect, as is she.

Heather C. says: October 23, 2014 at 02:21 PM

That mermaid is amazing! And seriously, this is the most gorgeous little girl party I've ever seen. I'm doing that cake for my sister in the spring! Happy Birthday!

It is such a joy to watch your girl grow. Thank you for sharing so much of your life (and hers) with us strangers!

If every child could be loved as Mimi is the world would be a beautiful place. Happy birthday sweet girl!

Ohhh wow what a beautiful decor. My niece turn 2 on oct 18.

Karen on Bainbridge Island says: October 26, 2014 at 10:06 PM

Oh my! Cutest birthday girl and cake ever. And I laughed out loud at the pix of the birthday girl holding the tea cup to the deers lips....hilarious. What a wonderful celebration.

Beautiful party, and beautiful girl. Curious, what and where did you find the chair Mimi is sitting in while she is eating cake?

Hello, I wasn't able to link to the blog for the cake - it indicated I have to be invited. Any ideas?

Belated birthday greetings to Mimi, what lovely pictures, exuding happiness all round. Bless you all x

Lindy Huber says: March 11, 2015 at 05:06 PM

I've not been blog-reading in a while, so I'm just now catching up.... Mimi's 2 year old party and gifts? The absolute BEST, all of it! I so wish that we could have shared the birthdays of my two adopted children with birthfamilies.... Such love, so beautiful!

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About Alicia Paulson


My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at




Since August of 2011 I've been using a Canon EOS 60D with an EF 18-200mm kit lens and an EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro lens.