Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

Henry David Thoreau

Celia Turns Two

Friday May 18-Sunday May 20, 2018                                                        Most Recent Posts
Lewis Mountain Campground                                                                     Trillium Trail
Shenandoah National Park                                                                        Wolf Howling and Moving On


Friday is driving day.  We’re not sorry to leave the rain and fog of the last two days to travel to Maryland for a weekend with Celia Claire and her parents of course.

We arrive on Friday afternoon and she seems pretty happy to see us.  She even allows me sit with her on her Hello Kitty couch.  Not sure it will ever be quite the same.  But it’s fun


She shows me all her toys and how they work..  That’s Sydney the kitty heading on our direction.


Grandpa gets into the game as well. 

She has a stacking toy that has colors and shapes.  She can do them all with ease but decides that she wants to make them all fit on our fingers.  She’s given Grandpa a blue square and she gives me one too, I already have a yellow triangle on another finger.  Not sure we’ll have enough fingers for this.


Trying on the shoes of others is always big fun even if you can only find one of them.

Not sure what she’s pondering here but she sure is a sweetheart and I loved the look.



Grandpa spent some time on Friday putting together part of Celia’s Birthday present from us and once it was finished and everyone was in bed, I brought it all downstairs and covered it with a flowered sheet since there was no paper or bag big enough.   It’s fun for everyone to be surprised I think.. 

Celia and I are the early risers but her mama is up too.  She spies the new thing in the corner but no one is ready with the camera when she does.  She investigates but we’re trying to wait for the boys to come share this with us.


She picks out the card first.  Has she learned to be polite at two?  I know adults who pay no attention to cards.


Next she goes for the smaller present but that’s actually for her mama.  Her Grandpa always told me that Carrie’s Birthday was really my mother’s day and gave me a gift too.  I thought it was a great tradition and so that package is for Carrie.  Celia is surprised when I tell her but gives it to her mom and goes on to the larger one with the BIG bows.


Fun to open.  The bows are springy!


Off comes the paper.  Inside is play dough in a dozen colors with a set of tools and cutter forms.  We’re going to have a lot of fun with this.


Finally we just can’t wait for those lazy bones and she peels off the “wrapping” of the big present, a toddler sized table and two chairs.   How else can you do play dough??


She gets right to work checking everything out.


Later she recruits Nana to play with the giant pieces of paper and crayons for drawing.

Ain’t we got fun?  Even if the interruption for a picture bothers the artist.

Meanwhile, like father like daughter.  Couldn’t resist the hand positions.  David is having problems with his feet swelling pretty seriously after his by pass surgery so I’m always encouraging him, not totally successfully to lay this way so his feet are WAY over his heart.


We do manage to get a bite and call it breakfast before the party guests start arriving.

First to arrive is Celia’s friend Zoey and her parents of course.  That’s her dad almost out of the picture.  Zoey is crazy for Sydney.


Sydney doesn’t mind at all.

Celia shares her Hello Kitty couch with Zoey but it’s too funny when she sends Sydney away.
She and Sydney have a bit of a disagreement about whose couch this really is.


Carrie’s younger cousin Fiona joins the party which now does consist of Zoey, Sydney and Celia.


Eventually after playing and snacking on birthday foods it’s time to open presents.

Celia’s other Granddad Bob is helping her to enjoy the fruit platter which eventually makes its way to right in front of her.  She’s definitely her mother’s daughter with a huge strawberry in her hand at the moment and more to come.  Carrie was such a fruit eater everyone called her Carrie Berry.   I know a person or two who still do.


Her Mama helps Celia with the wrapping but she definitely needs less help than last year.


Zoey is interested in watching and really would like to help too.


When Carrie was little, she liked puppets.  I’ve given Celia some but she’s not a terrific fan.  This is a little book about a sea turtle and you put your finger inside and make him move as you turn the pages.   She liked putting her finger in the back of it but when I put mine in and made it wiggle, she quickly pulled her hand away and wasn’t quite so sure.  Too funny!


There were other large gifts besides the table and chairs.  She needs a suitcase if she’s going to travel to see Nana and Granpa so we found one we knew she’d like.  Hope she’ll get a lot of use out of it.

Her grandmother Joan found the perfect little red wagon.  At first Celia wanted to push it.  She didn’t quite get that she had to pull it.

Grandma Joan and Granddad Bob also gave her a lawn mower like Daddy’s so she can help  mow the lawn.  They are having the same trouble in Maryland with all the rain and the grass that won’t quit growing. 

Of course what birthday party doesn’t have a cake?  Daddy lights the chandes.  All two of them.


Looks like Celia doesn’t quite get the hang of the blowing out thing but she has enough help to make it happen.

She’s a big fan of Daniel Tiger so her great Aunt Nancy made sure she had the perfect cake.


Not sure who chose the lemon filling but Celia wasn’t a fan.

However Grandpa and Mama thought it was just fine.  As is evident, a baby brother is on the way arriving in late August or early September. 



After the big day party with so many guests, there was a small gathering on Sunday when Carrie’s good friend Jess and her family, who could not make it on Saturday, came by.

This mini party was being held on the patio by the pool so Celia was out early getting the grass in shape with her new mower.



She conned pretty much everyone in taking her for walks during the morning.

She’s an outside girl and loves to go exploring.  Can’t wait until she comes up to Shenandoah for some hiking. 


Jess, her husband Matt and their son Caleb arrive and everyone gathers around the pool.  As you can see by their clothing, it’s a LOT warmer in Maryland than in Shenandoah.  David and I brought the wrong kind of clothing and no bathing suits.

At least he has a T shirt and rolls up his pant legs to get his feet in the pool.


Matthew is the first one in the water.  He says it’s only cold when you first get in.  No one seems to believe him.


Eventually Jess’s husband Matt gives in and takes the fast way with a jump.


Seems that no one remembered the birthday hats at yesterday’s official party so Carrie gets them out today and models one.

I get in the pool as well – feels about like a Florida Spring to me.  But I have to borrow a pair of shorts and a tank top from Carrie to use as a swimming suit.  The 3 swimmers also model birthday hats.

But the birthday girl herself doesn’t care for the hat.  Not sure what she’s pointing at here.  One of us in the pool apparently.


Everyone but us has to go back to work tomorrow so the party breaks up in time for us all to get on the road headed home.

It’s always sad to leave them and I have no pictures of “good bye” but they’ll be coming to see us in the mountains in a few weeks so it doesn’t seem so bad.

Once back in Virginia we know we’re pretty close to home when we see our Blue Ridge.   What a wonderful sight to have in your neighborhood.  They aren’t the Rockies but they’re our own gentle beauties and we love them.


Back up on the Skyline Drive, we arrive just in time for sunset and stop at an overlook to enjoy it.


And enjoy the afterglow as well.  As it gets darker and darker.



Wonderful end to a Happy Birthday Celia weekend.


  1. It looks like Celia had a very happy birthday!

  2. What a great post...made me smile A LOT!!! Celia is just so adorable and your photos of her at this age will be special memories for her eventually!! Carrie is looking great and we wish her the best!! Welcome Home...we're just down the road;o))

  3. These were great pictures enjoyed the party!

  4. Two is such a great age for the grandparents:)) Enjoy!

  5. Celia is really cute! I know that she will love the table and chairs and the playdoh! Looks like she had a great party!

  6. So fun to read you are going to have a grandson !
    I enjoyed the birthday commentary.

  7. So Celia was put to work in no time cutting the grass. Aren't there child labor laws in MD? You'd think with all those lawyers around they'd know better! :cD

  8. How sweet that you were able to celebrate with Celia:) What a fun time for all. The table and chairs was a great idea. And Play Dough is one of my all time favorites. I love the smell and texture.

  9. What a beautiful time filled with memories!

  10. Celia is just getting cuter. She'll get lots of use from her new table - and can ship herself in that new suitcase! Ezra is a big Daniel Tiger fan as well. He learned "waiting is hard" from the show and practices waiting patiently because of it (so we love the show too :-) ) She looks so much like her mom pushing the mower in the yard. What a fun time for everyone, glad they're coming your way soon!

  11. Celia is adorable, with a personality to match! That enormous pink Hello Kitty suitcase is hilarious! Love the Celia-sized table and chairs. What a lucky little girl, to be showered with so much love. She obviously gives back at least as much in return. :-)

  12. Great post! I'm so glad you and Pops were able to come to celebrate with us. Celia really had a blast and your gufts were perfect. She plays with the play dough and colors every day and enjoys eating breakfast at her table. Can't wait to see you soon in Shenandoah!!

  13. She is well-loved as she should be. What an angel.

  14. Celia is such a cutie. So glad you got to be there for her second birthday. Love the idea of a present for Mom/Carrie.

    Does David wear compression stockings? Really solved the problem of swelling of my feet.

  15. OH my gosh, Celia is just the cutest thing! Carrie looks fabulous as well. What a great table and Play-Doh set, just perfect.

  16. Celia is a spit image of her mom and my how she has grown cuter each post. She brought so much joy not only to her doting parents but to her Nana and Grandpa.

  17. Thanks for sharing the birthday party. Celia is sure growing up. We are hoping to be back in our Blue Ridge Mountains very soon. Fingers crossed.

  18. What a wonderful birthday celebration...they grow quick. Love your Blue Ridge Mountains.

  19. Thank you for documenting this wonderful day which will probably serve me better than my own memory of it. That is a shame, but it is wonderful to revisit these wonderful times on your blog! Thank you again!

  20. Happy birthday, pretty little Celia! She is adorable. Maryland looks lush and beautiful. Such exciting news about the baby boy. I know you and David enjoyed being able to celebrate with everyone. Thank you, Sherry, for documenting the festivities with your camera for all to enjoy. Have to agree, too, that those Blue Ridge Mountains are a sight to behold! Hugs to all!!

  21. She is very cute. Growing up so quickly!


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