Sunday, August 28, 2011

Anaya's Second Birthday

August 26

The day dawned around six am.  The sun began to fill the sky with light.  Peeks of it flitted through the cracks of the bedroom curtains.  Stretching out and blinking I remembered that today was a very special day. I pulled open the curtain and looked at my little love sleeping softly on the bed beside me.

I kissed her forehead and whispered "Happy Birthday Princess".  She slept on.  I rested my lips on her and took a few deep breaths of her beautiful baby smell.  The love that I have for her infused my heart and my being with joy and energy and I began to think of all of the things we needed to do to prepare for the party that was happening in the evening.  I took a picture of her as she opened her eyes on her special day.

Good morning little love! I sang to her.  I smothered her in kisses and sang her the happy birthday song.  She seemed to know that something different was going on and she opened her eyes a little wider.

Gently I brushed the hair from her face and ran kisses from the edge of her lips all the way up to her cute little ear.  She smelled of mango, sugar and mint butter that a friend sent for her a couple days ago. smells amazing.  It smells edible.  We made jokes about how she smells good enough to gobble up!

"It's time for a shower!" I tell her and Brent undresses her and brings her to the shower.  I found a shower chair at a second hand store that is big enough for her to lay on in the shower.  We set her on it, on top of a towel and I pass the warm water over her with the detactchable shower head.  She loves the feeling of the water tickling her skin.  She sighs as I run it over her head and down her back.  I hold it on her neck and shoulders for a while.  The are always so tight lately.  I lather her up from head to toe with Earth Mama Angel Baby Wash that smells of oranges, rinse her off and pass her out to her Daddy who is waiting with a towel.

Baby in one arm, suction and oxygen in the other, Brent takes Anaya back to the bedroom and puts a diaper on her.  I meet them downstairs and we decide what the little princess is going to wear for the start of the day.  We choose a sweet little outfit that arrived a few days before from Lori and Irie.  It says "Birthday Girl!" and the pants have cupcakes all over them.  Once she is dressed I set her in her special chair and braid her hair.  I think I did a decent job of it and she looked adorable.

Next we began carrying things out to the RV that we were taking down to the park.  We decided it was the best vehicle to take because if Anaya needed a nap or some private space it would be accesible.  Not to mention that we had a whole ton of stuff that needed to go to the park for the party.  So we ate a quick breakfast, loaded up the RV and went down to the park.

Immediately we ran into a problem.  There was a class booked all day in the BBQ shelter.  I spoke to the teacher and told her that I had booked the BBQ shelter for the day, for Anaya's party.  I explained to her that we would be cooking and setting up all afternoon.  After I told her about Anaya and about how important this day was she conceeded to move her "babysitting" class of pre-teens over to another area of the park.  We helped her move the tables.

The Big Tent Event Rentals man (Buck) and Doug from Hairy Productions Sound came and set up the "stage" for our live preformers.  April came and decorated the shelter.  Brent and Kristian went to get more tables and the TV for the auction. Larissa arrived and we started setting up the silent Auction items.  Nancy Ryde came and saved the day by cooking up all the meat and beans we needed to feed an expected 300 people.  I ran back and forth from Anaya to the auction tables to the BBQ to the stage to see what things needed doing.  My friend Ray helped me by staying with Anaya while we got set up.

At 3:30 the first musician showed up and started playing.  Sebastian sang some beautiful songs in spanish.

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The teacher with the babysitting course was a bit upset by the "noise" and asked us to turn it down.  It was pretty lame but I understood.  There had been a misunderstanding somewhere along the way and we needed to comprimise to keep each other happy.  I ran to get Anaya out of the RV and dressed her in her lovely pink birthday dress.  Initially I had her in her stroller, but almost immediately had to switch to the wagon because her secretions were a bit wet.

Ruby of "The Fable Cottage"
More people began arriving around 4 and then The Fable Cottage began singing.  Her music was lovely.  No one was really dancing so I decided to pick up Anaya and dance with her.  I removed her oxygen for a few moments and kept an eye on her lips to ensure she was breathing ok.  Here is us dancing on her birthday.  Ruby is singing in the background.

The afternoon began to blur after that.  I pulled Anaya around in her wagon caring for her while greeting people and trying to ensure that everything was running smoothly.  My stress level was a bit high and I struggled to remain grounded and focused in the here and now.  Eventually I just held my little love and took some deep breaths and it helped.  But I still had anxiety.  Here are some pictures.  A lovely young couple came and ran some kids games, unfortunately I didn't get any pictures of it!

The Stage 

Anaya's Incredible Cake made by Allison Schlosser

Anaya and I listening to music in the shade

Angel decides it's time to cuddle Anaya

Angel and Anaya listen to music together.

Anaya's Cake, Angel and Anaya (in Wagon)

Sleeping babies.

It's my party and I'll sleep if I want to!

So cute.

Anaya got the first piece of cake.  But she was sleeping during the song..
I sang her happy birthday over the P.A.

What a wonderful birthday!
We had some incredible music by "Mountain Station" a folky jazzy band.  I didn't get pictures of it though...they were amazing.

We had an incredible Video put together by Mike Coules of Mammoth Productions.  Everyone watched it.  Some people cried.  It was incredibly well done.  I'm uploading it to You tube as we speak.

The Live auction happened just after the cake.  Most of the items sold for half of their value.   For example the helicopter ride for 4 (value of $400) sold for $120. There were less than 100 people at the party.  I had hoped that with all of the media attention Anaya had been getting the past few weeks that more people would show up, and that our auction would be more exciting.  We had very few bids.  So  items in the auction didn't sell.  I still have some things that I will put online and try to sell them that way.

Adham Shaikh, a local DJ and electronic music artist began playing after the live auction and his music inspired people to dance.  He was a very grounded soul with loving eyes and a calming, cheerful presence. He thanked me for inspiring other mothers.  I thanked him for creating my favorite song.  It's called "The climb" and it so clearly illustrates my life in music.

The people that showed up were incredibly loving and supportive.  I have so much gratitude in my heart to the people who made it a priority to come to Anaya's party.  It was a beautiful and sunny day and Anaya was healthy and strong and enjoyed the whole thing.

Last to play was the Nelson Samba band.  Holy MOLY!  I should have had them play first.  Maybe their loud beats would have brought more people to the party.  They were AMAZING.  I simply don't have words to describe it.  I wish I hadn't been so tired.  I had hoped to dance to their music and spin some fire but I was simply exhausted and I remained with Anaya in the RV at that time.  It was dark and we were trying to clean up the silent auction.  So many items were unclaimed that we had to gather them all up and put them in the RV.

The rest of the night was a blur.  I remember getting home and falling into bed.  The next day I worked all day on auction items and organizing.  In the late afternoon we took the kids to the lake and jumped in because it was so hot out (35 celcius, 96 F).

I'm still busy trying to call people to pick up their silent auction items that they won.  I also need to get my thank you's out to everyone that contributed to the event.  The house is a disaster,the yard is overgrown, the RV is full of unclaimed auction  It's okay.  It will all come together.  The main thing is that the day was a beautiful success and that Anaya is so healthy and alert and concious.

We have recieved some beautiful packages and cards for Anaya in the mail and I thank you all.  Please accept my apology for not thanking you each individually.  I simply don't have the time at the moment.  Rest assured...your gift has arrived, and we are so thankful that you took time out of your life to think of our little love.

Anaya is doing so well.  She has just woken up and I should go and welcome her to the Day.



  1. wow- less than a 100 people :( I am so happy that those 100 showed but in a community as big as Nelson, I am pretty saddened by the other 9000+ residents :( I wish we could have made the journey, if only to show your family support. It sounds like it was still a lovely day and the pics of Anaya with her Angel are so adorable. I bet she loves the feel of the soft warm puppy sleeping beside her. You'll have to hold yet another fundraiser for an even bigger wagon soon ;)

  2. i am disappointed that there were less than a hundred people!!! that's ridiculous. you know all of us internet folk were there in spirit, it's too bad nelson didn't get in on it!!

    that video of you guys dancing made me cry. what a special memory for you. :)

  3. what sweet pictures!!! absolutely love the ones of her and the puppy!!! wish we were closer, definitely would have made it out! <3

  4. ~me and our daughters had an amazing time at Anayas birthday party! were proud to be part of the 100 that were able to make it~ i know its a busy time for people~back to school coming up~ lots of summer events taking place~ i know all of you would have been there if able~ you honoured Anaya that day by all the amazing birth day wishes i seen on facebook! it was the nicest birthday party ive ever been to and thank you for having all of us that could be there!! sharon jesus~

  5. Alexandra IrizarryAugust 28, 2011 at 11:15 AM

    I absolutely LOVE the pics of Anaya and sounds like the day went pretty well <3

  6. I so wish I lived close by and could have come. Anaya looked so beautiful in her pink dress :) I hope you raised enough money to help your family out for a while. Give that precious girl a kiss!

  7. If I had know sooner I would have made the drive from Edmonton to Ft. Nelson to be there ! You guys are amazing!Stay strong!

  8. Happy Birthday Sweet Angel! I wish I lived closer, I would have loved to be there.


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