~116~ We Have a 1 Year Old!!

How is that even possible? Seriously. 

But yet, here we are more than 13 months since Ethan was born.  And boy has a lot happened since then! Each day I’m in awe of just how - in such a short amount of time - we went from a teeny-tiny baby spending his first day of life in the NICU to our hunky-chunky guy who is just steps away from walking by himself, and with a personality (and attitude to go with it) all his own. 

To celebrate Ethan turning the big O-N-E, we through a big, semi-traditional Korean birthday party.  The hallmark of a Korean first birthday (Dol) is Doljabi where the birthday boy (or girl) is set in front of a table of items and people watch in anticipation to see what he picks.  Tradition has it that whatever he chooses predicts his future.  There are several different items that people choose to present to the birthday boy as options, but we decided to have: 

Thread-Long Life

Leading up to Ethan picking an item, guests vote for what they think he will pick ahead of time. A lot of party is centered around the theme of “What Will Ethan Choose?”  To go along with this, I created a large board, fittingly called a Doljabi Board, that displayed the options along with mason jars for each item and little raffle tickets that guests used to cast their vote.  We also dressed Ethan up on a traditional Korean outfit called a Hanbok, to wear during his Doljabi ceremony.  The rest of the day he work his custom made onesie that I ordered from Etsy.
In the end, Ethan ended up choosing the.....

...Stethoscope!!  Say hello to Dr. Ethan Hockenberry!

Other Korean items that we had were Dol Towers that I made using oatmeal containers wrapped with paper, and covered in black and white beans, and teal/silver colored candy.  One tower spelled out his name in Korean hangul, one had his name in English, and the 3rd the Chinese zodiac sign for the year that he was born-the year of the ram.  These were quite time consuming, but I’m pretty happy with how they turned out.  

I also made some traditional Korean food with the help of my mom. We made Mandu (wontons filled with pork and veggies), Bulgogi (Korean BBQ beef), and Mujigae-Tteok (Steamed rainbow rice cake). In addition, I bought Kimchi (Spicy picked cabbage-a staple at any Korean meal), steamed rice, a veggie tray, fruit tray, and pinwheel wraps.  

For beverages, we had water bottles, pop, and a teal punch that I made to go with our color theme. 
Other decorations included a Happy Birthday banner, balloons, and pictures of Ethan each month. One of my favorite things was a marque sign of the #1 that I added teal glitter to. I had wanted it to be the letter “E”, but of course that was the one that they didn’t have a JoAnn Fabrics when I picked it out. 

We had over 40 people at Ethan’s party and he was perfectly behaved. I really couldn’t have asked for a better day. I think (*hope*) that everyone and a good time. Ethan certainly had fun crawling all around and seeing everyone. But, I think his favorite part was his cake. This boy loves to eat and he didn’t waste any time digging into his cake. Or should I say frosting since the was about an inch of it on top of the cake. 

I really can’t think of one thing that I would change about the day. It really was perfect! Our sweet little boy is ONE and each new day has been sweeter than the last. 
We are very lucky to be his parents :)

The next day, on Ethan’s actual birthday, we had a quiet day at home; and a week later his 1 year appointment at the pediatrician. Here are his official stats: 

Weight: 18lbs
Length: 27.75”
Likes: Food, splashing in his bath, playing with his toys, walking along furniture, being chased up the stairs
Dislikes: Having his diaper changed, being told “no”.
Teeth: 7

Here’s to year #2!
Until then, 

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