lots of celebrating lately!

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we’ve been busy celebrating a few birthdays over here the past few weeks. josh’s was at the end of january, and eleanor’s was at the beginning of february!  whenever i think of their birthdays these days, i’m hit with a flood of memories from the past few years of celebrating together.  i don’t think josh minds, but their birthdays kind of mesh together as one in my head sometimes now…maybe because we went into the hospital on josh’s birthday 3 years ago to try and get this show on the road with my baby bump that was already 2 weeks past due.   it’s the best day for a birthday! josh kept saying. so of course she didn’t arrive for 2 more days. ;) regardless, i still kind of feel like they share a birthday in this weird way, and it’s fun to celebrate them together.

i remember celebrating josh’s birthday when we were dating as just the two of us in his kitchen at his tiny 108th street apartment. it was dark out and the space was quiet and we had made a confetti cake mix together from a box. i remember singing “happy birthday to you” in the tiniest whisper voice (how annoying, i’m sure) because i was too embarrassed to sing it by myself for him!  but i also remember being so coy and telling him i was going to be around for all the rest of his birthdays in this life and would get better at singing it to him over the years. (and for the record, i’ll sing it loud and terrible to him now. ugly crying, child birth, peeing in front of each other… i don’t know, we’re past trying to be cute for each other now.)

i also remember celebrating eleanor’s first birthday by bringing her this little cupcake in her high chair and watching both  of her hands move towards her mouth to cover the sweetest little smile and giggle at the same time. i remember thinking, “she knows! she gets it!” and freaking out as a mama might on her first child’s first birthday.

i love birthdays. i love my family. and i’m just really thankful to be a part of their lives.  here are a few photos from the birthday week. most are iPhone pictures. i kind of regret not pulling out the real camera more on their birthdays this year because i see such a difference between the iPhone and real camera pictures, but these are the next best thing and i’m just glad we have something to remember the days by…


^^^we started papa’s birthday off right with the best kind of ice cream cake… a 5 pints of ice cream kind! josh realized last year he was eating way too much of the stuff, and it was difficult for him to eat it in moderation because he loves ice cream so much. so, he did what any absolutely crazy person would do, and went on an ice cream fast…for an entire year! not one bite, not one! not a milkshake, not a scoop of gelato, notta.  i don’t really know how he did it, but he did it. and i remain impressed. (he’s debating doing it again this year, and i’m debating joining him. i know, i know. someone talk me out of it before i commit.)^^^


^^^i met up with josh on his birthday for lunch. we split a pretty delicious chicken parmesan sandwich and i am converted. we also caught a late night movie together that night in a movie theater that has lazy boy seats that RECLINE! i hadn’t ever experienced that sort of movie-going before, and it was pretty awesome. we saw a jack ryan something or other movie (it was the birthday boy’s pick) and it was alright. suspenseful, for sure. ^^^


^^^eleanor had a little birthday party on her birthday (we didn’t have one last year. i think we’re going with the idea of a party every other year? what do you do?) i would have forgone the party entirely but she doesn’t ask for much. all she really wanted was for all her friends to sing to her with her “dark blue happy cake.” so we figured we could do a low-key playdate/breakfast type party.

it’s rough having a birthday during the coldest month of the year where you can’t do something outdoors, and then when you have an itty bitty nyc apartment, it gets complicated. but we still managed to invite 18 of her tiniest friends over for the morning to play! we figured most parents would drop off, but we still had a little breakfast spread of bagels (from absolute! they are the best in the world!), fruit, yogurt and sausages for anyone who wanted to grab a plate and go, or stay! (most stayed, which was extra fun for us!)

after this birthday party morning, i’m feeling like our space can hold a big crowd pretty well, so long as you’re ok with people hanging out in every room, including your bedroom. it’s a cozy atmosphere but i think everyone had a good time. i know eleanor loved every minute of having so many of her friends over  to play. that made me happy.^^^


^^^the birthday breakfast spread!^^^


^^^after we sang happy birthday to E, she sat down and ate that entire piece of cake at the table without ever looking up or saying a word. you could see heaven on her face and it was adorable. also, here’s a picture of the birthday card eleanor made for papa. she is getting so good at her drawings and drew a picture of papa and her, all by herself!^^^


^^^happy birthday eleanor and papa! can’t tell you how much i love you both!^^^

  1. Jill

    We had every other year birthday parties at home with big, out of home, parties for 8, 12, and 16. I think it is a great way to celebrate and hope to have children as cute as yours someday to throw my own. Love the breakfast spread idea for the parents!

  2. Silvia

    “ugly crying, child birth, peeing in front of each other”.
    Haha! Love how real and down to earth you are!


  3. Laiah

    Absolutely adorable, love the pictures :)

  4. Briseidy

    adorable photos! everyone looks so happy! great memories in the making ;)

  5. I started reading your blog when you lived in DC, your little E has grown so fast! Birthdays are so special, I love the blue birthday cake! Looks like you all had a fantastic time celebrating! Thanks for sharing.

  6. Kristie

    We had our kids right out of high school, they are now 19 & 15! We had big parties every year until age 18 and maybe it’s because I’m about to turn 40 and they are pretty much grown up now, but I would give anything to be able to give another “little kid” birthday party! I say every year, and love every minute of it! This year we are celebrating our 40th birthdays and 20 years of marriage!

  7. Daria

    Reading your blog makes me so happy. You are a wonderful family :) Thank you for blogging!

  8. Emily

    Happy Birthday to Eleanor and Josh! That looks like the absolute sweetest birthday party. Eleanor looks so happy!

  9. hanna

    These photos are so sweet! I love your family. -Hanna Lei

  10. Jean

    i think my boyfriend would go crazy if he heard that someone went a year w/o ice cream!

    you guys are just amazing!

  11. Emily

    Your Eleanor is growing into such a little lady! She’s absolutely precious as is your whole family (even though I know you get that a lot!)!

  12. Jovita

    Happy Birthday to Eleanor and Josh! Your family is the sweetest :)

  13. Shelby

    Haha child birth, ugly cry and peeing in front of each other! Cracks me up. How true it is. Love your cute family.

  14. Brooke

    These are such sweet photos! Eleanor’s face is just beaming. What a beautiful little family :)

  15. iPhone pictures and they’re still awesome! The kiddos are so cute! My niece was born 2 days after her brother’s bday. They always share a party. It’s actually really cute!

  16. lauren

    happy birthday eleanor and josh!! to many happy joint celebrations in the future.

  17. Rachel

    Aw these are the sweetest! There’s so much happy loving in all of these pictures.

  18. What a fun time! We celebrate like that in May, birthdays every other day during that month it seems! I think my husband and I are going to go with birthday parties every other year for our kids as well. That’s how it’s happened so far in our few years of parenting! Your family is precious!

  19. Life+1

    You have such a wonderful outlook. I love ‘meeting’ other bloggers who recognize the little things in life and the big impact they have on us and the ones we love. An attitude of gratitude :o) x


    New Post: Tips for Flying with a Baby

  20. Stacy

    Naomi thanks for much for sharing your special days. I love that your blog hasn’t ever really changed and I really appreciate it because it’s so great the way the way it is. I love it.

    As for birthday parties I have two boys and we’ve always done a party for each every other year timing it so there’s only one birthday party a year. You may find parties become more costly and elaborate as they get older and I found organizing more than one to be too much.

    Best wishes to you all!

  21. Annie

    I am newly married, pregnant with my first and living in Brooklyn. You give me so much to look forward to, and I admire you so much as a wife and mama! <3

  22. Kelsi

    Growing up, we only got big birthday parties at ages 1, 5, 8, 12, 16, and 18. (Once we reached teenager-hood we were having friend parties and such for other occasions anyway.) For the off years we maybe had a few friends over or did a family thing or got to go somewhere with a parent for an entire day, but we never did the big invitations or hoopla. I liked knowing that a big party was coming, but also that on the other years it would be just as special but more private or personal. We were so grateful for whatever way we got to celebrate as a result.

  23. Kelly

    This looks like such a fun party – dark blue happy cake – how cute!

    xx Kelly
    Sparkles and Shoes

  24. Ah, February birthdays are the greatest! Mine isn’t until the end of the month but that adorable cake of Eleanor’s already has me brainstorming a few ideas.

    Love watching your family grow. It’s crazy to think I started reading your blog just after Eleanor turned 6 months old. Now I have a little one of my own and time is just flying by!


  25. Court

    Don’t give up ice cream! I’m lactose intolerant, so I think of being able to eat ice cream as a gift you should never take for-granted :p Happy Birthday, Eleanor + Josh!

  26. Deirdre

    So fun! I recently went to the 3rd bday of Levi, son of my friends Marc and Diane. They really rocked the teepee theme too. Featured on my blog!


  27. I honestly love reading your blog it is such a highlight to my day when you upload a post! I don’t know what it is, maybe because I’m 18 and never really thought of myself as much of a family person, but seeing you and Josh and the kids together makes me hope that one day I can have a beautiful family just like you! Your blog is my favourite!

  28. Denisse

    LOVE THIS POST! & again, Happy Birthday Josh & E<3

  29. Anne

    Aww happy birthday to them both! I love the look on E’s face in the last picture, like the most special girl on the planet with all that attention!

  30. Bea

    What a great family you are!!!
    I love these photos!
    Buona giornata!

  31. Hi taza!
    Been following you forever and let me just say your sweet little family is beautiful. I love seeing big bloggers like you who raise their babes with my same values! Anyways id love to send you one of our world map prints. They remind me of you and your littles and all the travels you do and the style of your home and nursey is similar to the style we envisioned these to be at home in! Ive entered my store site but here it is again therustedarrow.etsy.com let me know if you are interested! Ashlee.nps@gmail.com
    Thanks for sharing your beautiful life with us all!


  32. Kendra

    What a sweet post!! :) In my family, we had little parties most years. Think dinner and a movie with close friends, or a beach trip. Then at 5, 10, 15, 18, 21, we had BIG themed parties. I have a big family, and parties every year just didn’t work. So it worked out pretty well!
    Happy birthday you two!!! What a beautiful family!

  33. Tammy

    Oh how sweet! What a lovely little party! ^_^ Elanor looks adorable. Happy Birthday to them both. I love your pictures Taza…always so colorful and bright :) Your photography is truly inspiring and you speak right to the heart. Have a lovely week and stay warm!


  34. Ariel

    HA! Oh my can I relate to “no longer worried about being cute” stage! lol After 7 years with my guy, we’re pretty much over all that too. ;) Gotta love how simple sweet Eleanor kept everything! Friendship and cake seems like all you need on your birthday. ;)

  35. Elise

    E looks so happy, she’s adorable! And I love that blue cake!

  36. nanette

    such sweet photos!

  37. I love your memories of birthdays – whisper singing is something I can relate to (though I just sing loudly at any moment now I’ve been with my partner for 4 years – no cutesy stuff anymore) and Eleanor’s reaction to her first birthday cake sounds adorable! I can’t even begin to imagine how sweet that was


  38. Dana


  39. Teffy

    So so sweet. She looks so happy having all her friends around, and the breakfast spread is such a sweet idea!!
    How great are the cinemas with couches and reclining seats!? There is one near my home here in London, and it’s my favourite (especially since they serve wine and cheesecake).
    One year without ice cream? Don’t do it! Save yourself!

    {Teffy’s Perks} X

  40. You’re such an inspiration, you and your family! When I read on your blog, I always get in a good mood with hope and excitement!

  41. Jessie

    If you do no ice cream, can you still eat sweets? I love ice cream very much! Always needing my Ben and Jerry’s or Blue Bell.

  42. Emilia

    Happy (belated) birthday to both Josh and Eleanor!

    Seriously though, that photo of them together smiling at the birthday card is so lovely and so sweet. It may not be taken on a big fancy camera, but sometimes quick photos are even better than big, high-quality ones. :)

  43. Ebru

    Such a sweet post! Happy birthday to them both :)

  44. Kennedy

    Oh my goodness! The funniest part of this post was learning about Josh ice cream obsession! It really made me lol! Happy birthday E!

  45. Felicia

    Wow, this post was so honest, thank you so much, I totally agree with the no need to try to be cute thing after so many years ;)
    And I know what you mean with the birthdays, I got induced 1 day after my husbands birthday, but my baby girl took her time and arrived 3 days later, but in my head I totally connect my husband’s birthday to the birth! We are a family of 4 and our birthdays all are at the end of December and in January..we have a little party for each kid on their birthdays, but since it’s gotten really much with christmas and planning and family arriving from far away, we decided to do a little garden party in summer, where we celebrate all 4 birthdays with family and friends!
    And come on, you totally can’t complain about your frosting on this awesome cake!!

  46. Felicia

    and now i see, I used ‘totally’ in almost every sentence, sorry for that :D

  47. Caitlin

    so many fun things to celebrate! eleanor is so sweet and i love the picture of her holding the card with josh!

  48. Love these pictures! Eleanor’s birthday cake is sweet and so her–unique and adorable! I’m the oldest of five and even though we had a larger home my mother decided having five birthday parties a year was too much–so we each had a birthday party for our fifth, tenth, and fifteenth birthdays, which meant there was usually only one or two parties for her to plan a year. This worked out so well for our family; there are so many ways to celebrate!

  49. Jemima

    Eleanor looks like her dreams were coming true in those shots!

    The cake is fantastic too!

    When I was growing up as one of five, we had birthday parties every other year, and sometimes three years would pass before we had one. But, we didn’t mind, as every year at least two of the five of us would get a party, and we all loved it!


  50. Christine

    this melted my heart.

  51. Janis

    What a nice and cozy way to celebrate in the dead of winter! The breakfast spread is so cute and so is the blue birthday cake! :)

  52. there are too many sweet/fun things about this post to mention. what a FUN setting for her birthday. simple and sweet! most kids at her age would’ve asked for the world. i love her dark blue, happy cake wish. what a great kiddo you have there! she’s seriously the coolest kid ever. ;)

    happy birthday again, Eleanor & Josh!

    Beautiful post, Naomi!!

  53. Karlie

    Would love to know where those awesome ombre curtains are from!

  54. Mónica

    In less than a month my little Candela turns 3 and has also spent time as not celebrate yet. Your girl is gorgeous and super-sympathetic. By the way I love the cake is great and theater seats have gone crazy. Kisses and happy Thursday.

  55. Your descriptions of E always makes me smile so big… she just seems to be the most content, happy, easily satisfied child out there – and so pretty, too! :) Your family radiates joy!

  56. Elle

    Aw! This post made me smile. Eleanor eying that cake is the best!

  57. Eleanor is such a character. I just love her! Thank you for sharing her and Samson with the rest of us. They are truly special!

  58. Candice

    This is so sweet!! What a cute party. We do a party every other year also. My son’s B-day is the first of March and we are in Utah so I’m in the same position!! We rented a spot this year but are donating to a local charity in lieu of gifts this year. I want it to be about being with family and friends over gifts.

  59. ezrazoe

    oh 3 is such a great age. Enjoy. you are blessed. And was it crazy cleaning up after that party? I realize that winter bdays indoors are just a MESS afterwards. Cleaning up little goldfish for years… behind the couch, everywhere.

    • TAZA

      It wasnt too bad! Just a lot of putting all the toys away, tossing lots of plates and cups and sweeping. Lots of sweeping. ;) I thought it’d be worse.

  60. Amanda

    I also enjoyed the “ugly crying, child birth, peeing in front of each other… i don’t know, we’re past trying to be cute for each other now” That’s love! Your little family is so sweet. You’re a great mama!

  61. Margaret

    I love the cake! i was wondering if you made it yourself or if you bought it at a store?!

    • TAZA

      Thank you! I made it myself! Eleanor helped me make the frosting blue and put all the sprinkles on. That’s why there are handfuls and handfuls of sprinkles placed in globs. ;)

  62. Livi

    so much fun!! happy birthday to both of them!

  63. Les

    I have 4 kids. We do a small fun, themed party at home w/ family (grandparents, cousins, etc./a total of 16 people) every year. Kids get parties w/ friends every 5 years!

  64. Love the sweet looks back on birthdays past! You’re hilarious – yep, childbirth tends to take any hint of being shy out of the relationship. Happy Birthday Eleanor and Josh! :-)

  65. Ashley

    E is so dang adorable :)


  66. lauren

    what a cutie! and i love those little juice boxes on the breakfast spread – so cute!

  67. Elise

    aw cute, love the blue cake

  68. lucinda

    such a sweet celebration – happy birthday josh & e!

  69. Amanda

    these are the sweetest birthday celebrations! what great memories to hold onto!

  70. Taylor

    So adorable! Happy birthday to both of them! I love that all Eleanor wanted was a “blue happy cake’. I remember when my little sister was that age and all she wanted for Christmas were, “blue presents”. So adorable.



  71. Dusti

    Precious little girl, precious family, precious party. Love seeing these tidbits of your adorably wonderful life!

  72. Shannon

    Oh my I love this post! Ugly crying and childbirth, my favorite part! You guys have such a sweet family this looks like such a fun celebratory weekend!

    xoxo Shannon

  73. Christina

    Just a friendly word tip… It’s “nada” (a Spanish word) instead of “notta.” :)

  74. JM

    Family birthdays are the best. ALL my family’s birthdays are in summer. ALL of them, so I can totally understand birthdays meshing into one. June, July, August (and now September since my man joined the family), is birthday season for us. The upside was always being able to have birthday parties outside in the garden. But I went to plenty of winter birthday parties as a kid and they were just as much fun, if a little messier :)

    I am also glad to hear that after years of being together most couples more or less completely let down their guards. It’s nice when you’re comfortable with someone :)

    I am so glad you and your lovely family have these special times together. Trust me, the kids will remember them! :)


  75. Elissa

    How Sweet! Our girls are now 8 and 3 and since they are 5 years apart and 10 days apart from this point on we think we are going to do big parties on the 5 year marks. So next party will be when they are 10 and 5. Also my 8 year old and her Papa share the exact same birthday. She was his 32nd birthday present!

  76. alice

    so sweet! i am happy to see someone else cramming a bunch of people into tiny spaces to celebrate wintery birthdays! my son is a december boy and while a lot of his friends had parties out at place we did ours in our living room and i think the kids (and parents) has a blast. welcome to the three year old club, E!

  77. Michelle

    Adorable! Happy Birthday Eleanor and Josh!

  78. yoreney

    BLUE CAKE!! why didn’t i think of that?! (my son has been asking for rainbow cake or red blue and yellow cake.. but i’ve always been too afraid to play with colors. this convinced me that blue cake is the new cool. thanks!)

  79. Sinead

    Ice cream looks amazing! Happy birthday to Josh and Eleanor :-)

  80. Tina

    Happy birthday Eleanor!!! What a cute birthday party idea!!

  81. What a fun couple of birthdays! Please don’t give up the ice cream – maybe just promise yourself once a month!

  82. Marin

    it’s been so great to watch eleanor grow. i love how she poses for your pictures! your little family is so inspiring and a great example of love for all of us. thank you for sharing!

  83. Samuel

    Wow, incredible blog layout! How long have you been blogging for?
    you make blogging look easy. The overall look of your website is wonderful, as well
    as the content!

  84. TJ

    This sounds and looks like the best birthday! I love that it was a morning birthday party, such a great way to keep it simple and fresh. I think your apartment makes for great parties ;)
    xo TJ


  85. Shannon

    Love this. Love the story, the family, how you document it, the details you remember, and every last bit.

  86. Abbey

    From a fellow Aquarius, Happy Birthday season to your darling gang! Eleanor just gets sweeter and sweeter!

    Along Abbey Road

  87. Christy Henley

    ADORABLE. My first born will be 3 on Saturday…how is the time FLYing by so fast?

    I have to ask…what kind of cake pan do you use to make your cute cake? Loving the cake stand too!!

    I’m over the moon for your blog. It makes me happy :)

  88. Sierra

    When my sister and I were growing up, we would have a birthday party every other year, and our parents would give us a present on the off years. As we got older, presents started becoming events, like seeing a broadway show! It helped that although my sister and I are three years apart, our birthdays are only a week apart!

  89. Juliette

    I love birthdays!! I want to celebrate the life of the person who celebrates it with presents, cake and confetti. It will be my boyfriend’s birthday in four days and I am ready to make it a special day!

    Love the story of the evolution of your relationship with Josh, So cute!

  90. happy birthday to half of the lovely davis clan!!

  91. Marie

    My son just celebrated his friend’s birthday last week and it was a McDonald’s birthday party! He also had a blast and it’s really a happy moment for us parents to see our children being so happy with their friends. :)


  92. Jacob

    such special photos!

  93. Amanda H.

    that picture of e and josh with the birthday card…priceless! so so precious!

  94. Carrie

    That smile on her face holding that card for papa… my heart melts! Looks like a fun week of celebrations!

  95. oh wonderful. we celebrate two birthdays this month too..
    happy birthday!

  96. I loved this post…these little life stories are my favorite on the blog. I know it’s always been a lifestyle space, but I think that you encompass the reality of your little family…it’s not always perfect, but it’s beautiful in it’s own way. I don’t have a family yet, but your stories always inspire me for the future.

  97. Ingrid

    how cute is that?! i love how everything is blue. happy belated birthday E <3

  98. Taza, where are you? I miss your lovely posts… xoxo

  99. joanna

    “(and for the record, i’ll sing it loud and terrible to him now. ugly crying, child birth, peeing in front of each other… i don’t know, we’re past trying to be cute for each other now.)” ->

    oh, i laughed so hard!
    it’s so true but also… charming. like only just-normal-family-life can be charming. :)

  100. yay for February birthdays! All of ours blend together too- Hubs at the end of January, then both kids and then me by the end of February.

    Also, we’ve decided to do friend parties every four years. We still celebrate family style, but that way we can really appreciate and plan for the friend parties. There’s no need to “one-up” the last year’s party. Plus, those big years (4,8,12,16) seem to coincide well with church events and progression.

  101. Alyssa

    I cannot get over those reclining theater chairs. We just discovered our theater. That is better then the setup at my house!!!

  102. Mary Margaret

    Your family is just darling! I love reading your blog and you are such an inspiration of a loving and God-centered wife and mother.

    Keep doing you, Naomi. You’re killing it.