henry's first birthday

I am so happy that Henry's mom found me online last year and asked me to take pictures at her son's first birthday party. Everything about this party was a joy to capture. There were great decorations / personal touches including pictures of Henry throughout his first year, artwork he had made and all of his favorite food for everyone to eat. And since I'm a sucker for the little details, the fact that they had Oh Henry! mini candy bars was the best! 

There were also many fun activities like guessing the amount of clothespins in a jar [since Henry LOVES clothespins] and filling out a survey to guess things about Henry's life in the years to come. 

I am quite certain that Henry had a blast at his party. I never saw that little guy upset. 

Also, Henry's family was very inviting and it felt like I was surrounded by people I had known for a long time. But maybe that was because there was polka music playing which makes me feel right at home.

When it came time for Henry to eat his first cupcake, he was a little timid at first. Soon after, he realized how delicious cake and frosting were and started to devour it. He also had some help from others showing him to pat his head, which of course is why he got cake in his hair! 

Even despite a few rain showers here and there, it was a perfect day to celebrate a first birthday!

wedding attire

My dress hunting started in the beginning of the year. I had a few dresses in mind, but it meant I would need to travel to Chicago to try them on. My mom, cousin and I picked a day to head to Chicago to look at wedding and bridesmaid dresses. 

Our first stop was at J.Crew. I tried on quite a few, including a cotton one which I hesitated to try on [it was on my list, but not until I saw it did I realize it was cotton]. 

After J.Crew we had a bit of time before heading to our appointment at BHLDN. We ate lunch and stopped to pick up some Glazed donuts to take home to our guys.

After both of those stops, we still had some time to kill. It was February, but luckily it wasn't too cold out, so it was nice to walk around the windy city. On our way to BHLDN, I saw a sign reading "SPRINKLES CUPCAKE ATM". I had heard of the cupcake atm before, but figured my mom hadn't and would get a kick out of it as she works at a bank.

My cousin tried to buy a cupcake out of the machine but broke it - err, I mean it got stuck. We eventually went inside the store [boring] and bought a cupcake that we all shared. 

We finally made our way to BHLDN where I tried on three dresses - only one which I deemed to be a possibility. 

After that day in Chicago, I think I knew in my mind which dress I wanted but I still showed a few friends the pictures of what I tried on to get opinions. In the end I choose the cotton dress from J.Crew which I almost didn't try on! But in the end, it felt the most "me". Also, it had pockets.

PHOTO BY ESTER B. PHOTOGRAPHY

PHOTO BY ESTER B. PHOTOGRAPHY

Eric's journey to find a suit was a little bit easier. He ordered two different suits online to try and he also tried one on at J.Crew. He ended up with a suit from Bonobos. His shirt was from Banana Republic Factory.

PHOTO BY ESTER B. PHOTOGRAPHY

PHOTO BY ESTER B. PHOTOGRAPHY

Katie, my matron-of-honor's dress was also from J.Crew [we had already decided on that during our trip to Chicago.] Unfortunately I can't tell you much about what Brian was wearing, except we bought him the tie! We just wanted him in a suit, looking sharp, which is exactly what he did. We are pretty easy-going that way. 

PHOTO BY ESTER B. PHOTOGRAPHY

PHOTO BY ESTER B. PHOTOGRAPHY

As for other little details, my necklace and his tie clip were from J.Crew. There's a story to go along with his tie clip, but I will save that for another post. [Tie shown below is a tie my mom made with material that belonged to my Great-Grandma. Eric wore it for rehearsal.]

My belt, earrings and hair clip were from Anthropologie

Eric's shoes were Original Penguin Brogue wing tip while mine were B.A.I.T. Hailey in yellow. 

Oh yes, and I should also mention my make-up was done by my good friend Rachel! Kind of wish I had her on hand daily. 

[Of course this post was not sponsored by any of the places mentioned. Do you really think that many people read my website that I would get a spiff for mentioning them? Well, except Rachel. She may have paid me to say she's a great make-up artist...]

PHOTO BY ESTER B. PHOTOGRAPHY

PHOTO BY ESTER B. PHOTOGRAPHY

my bridal shower

Last Sunday, my cousin [and matron of honor] Katie threw me a bridal shower.  It was great to see friends and family that I don't see on a regular basis.  

Katie did a great job hosting as well as decorating her house!  Here's a little peak at the party. 

It was a great time + I thank everyone for everything they did for me that day. 

Below I want to show off part of my grandma's present because it's wonderful.  Grandma thinks I'm so great at embroidery, but I believe the opposite - she is.  I now have a cat dish towel for every day of the week, as well as a beautiful tablecloth.  All hand embroidered by her. 

And because it would be wrong to end this post without cat pictures, here are a bunch from after the party.  I was possibly playing with cats instead of helping pick up / take things to the car.  But, just look at little kitty Huck.  You would do the same thing.