No, it wasn't a shower, it was a heavy rain of "Baby Linus Love." This weekend Eric and I were blessed to have Eric's parents, my mother, and a long-time friend of my family (essentially family) fly in for the weekend to share in a wonderful shower put on at CD's house. I cannot even begin to tell you how amazing the day was--the weather held out (okay, it was hot and humid, but no tornadoes or thunder storms--that was later in the night), CD's house was decorated just deliciously, and there was an intimate group of people who mean the world to Eric and me. First, the food. A sampling of tea sandwiches, salads, fruit, the classic cous cous dish, and all decorated with little tins of oat grass that CD grew. It was straight out of a magazine. (Recipes are going to be requested.) Next, the games! Shlotty and CD made 2 clever games to play. The first was "match the baby picture with the adult." There were some great pictures of many of my friends and family and their corresponding baby pictures. It was hard! Eric got me wrong...I couldn't believe it! He thought I was the new Ms. San Francisco (RS); you cannot mistake her dimples, even when she was a babe. Well, Eric did. (I don't even have dimples!) Then, there was the "match the star with their corresponding baby's name." E.g. Frank Zappa and...Moon Unit; TomKat and...Suri. Those who have an affinity for US Weekly definitely had a leg up. MBMPHPA and Sully dominated. What was neat was that the games were in color, and had one of our favorite Charley Harper prints printed on the top. "Prickly Pair."
And then the gifts. It was overwhelming, and I am not just talking about the "volume" of gifts, but the thought and time people took to put together amazing gifts that had special meaning. Even though many people could not make the shower due to being so geographically "challenged" (Aunt T and Aunt S, Ms San Francisco, Studs, great grandparents, great grandaunts, old college friends and other family friends), their presences were surely felt. It was great to see that most people were mindful of not going overboard with wrapping, and used creative things like blankets, or no wrapping at all. Plus, we are collecting items for a time capsule, and people came up with the most creative items for us to include! (e.g. a picture of a gas station with the current gas price, a cloth grocery bag, a print out of the year's top stories, political cartoons, The Biggest Loser information, etc.) I'll do a time capsule specific post at some point as this one is big enough.
The generosity of people is overwhelming, and we are appreciative of every gift. I thought I would highlight a few below...this is no indication of our "favorite" gift, as they all are amazing, but I could rival any dissertation with writing about this event, and you all can only take so much Ali Blogging!
Note: I did not take pictures of the event, but when any of those cross my path, I will share. I just took pics of some of the gifts at home.
Here is an example of one of the creative gifts in thought and packaging. The family friend (GD) who came with my mom from MA for the shower (she has known my family since I was in utero), decided to give Linus a little taste of the Bay State. She picked up items from across MA, and made little tags to identify where the gifts were from. She kept all of the items in the original packaging that was given at the store (yay for the "green" aspect, too!), and put them all in a brown paper bag with the following front:
First stop: my hometown of Westborough, MA (yay for the 1st Boston item!):
Next stop, Beantown! (I guess the MGH gift shop is "the best" for shopping...and the clothing says 100% natural all over it, if you cannot see.)
Let's go back in time to Old Sturbridge Village. This has meaning as I used to go to a camp at OSV with GD's son.
Finally, the trip ends in the Berkshires; some of the most beautiful parts of MA:
For anyone who knows about our wedding, they will know that Studs and Ms San Francisco got Eric and me North Face pullovers with "Team Heintz" printed on back. Well, there is a new member to "Team Heintz," and they were quick to make it official (please note that the onesies are organic! And, we have 2 sizes so the boy will be a member for that much longer.)Along the lines of friends making things for gifts, Schlotty surprised us all with a HANDMADE QUILT!!! Even more, apparently Mr Schlotty helped as well! If you know Schlotty, you probably aren't surprised as she is Martha Stewart Jr (and not Jr as in Junior Varsity...she is a Division 1 starter Martha Stewart), but the quality and thought that went into it was stunning. She also reused the baby shower invite to write a note about the quilt (yay reusing!), and let us know how there were parts that were recycled and "organic." I want the adult version! It is so soft, and a perfect floor blanket for Linus to have "tummy time."Here is the invite she used (the invite was drawn by my brother)Speaking of my brother, his wife, Aunt T, gave the cutest basket of "green" products, clothing, and the cutest toys. She is a massage therapist, and also included a baby massage book! I tried to recreate the basket, but it looked much better how she had it arranged. And continuing on the sister-in-law theme, another one of my sisters-in-law (SIL) gave us the cutest box of gifts, including our first wooden toys. They are from 2 companies that are mindful of non-toxic paint, and "eco-friendly" toys. Interestingly, my last SIL was the one who gave us "Egypt" (the cloth monkey highlighted in an earlier post). Kind of neat that all 3 of them have gotten us toys!Below is just a picture of all of the cute toys we have so far. Do you notice the "things that make you go awww?!?!" Oh yes...we got some Animalz. As if the shower wasn't enough, CD found 3 of the cutest Animalz and had them as decoration at the shower! (She also made sure our baby is not going to go w/o diapes and got us a BUNCH of eco-friendly diapers.) Okay, these still make my heart flutter b/c they are so cute. We also got a bunch of hard cover books for Linus's library. Funny, but there has not been 1 repeat in terms of the books we received! Many came from a family friend up north. See if you remember any from your own childhood...Speaking of my childhood, my mother included in her lot of gifts some old clothes from when I was a baby, as well as from when my brother's were babies! Some of the clothing is over 30 years old, and much of it is knitted by my grandmother. Plus, she included my baby silverware. I love hand-me-downs, and these items will stay in the family for sure.
And if you think 30+ years is old, take a gander at the following items that are just about 60 years old! My paternal Grandmom sent down my father's receiving blanket given to her by MY great grandmother, and a quilt made by my Great Aunt Mabel. They were gifts she received from her own shower. She included a hand written note pinned to the blankets, which will be kept as well so this all can be passed along in the future. Oh, I had tears. They are in amazing shape, and the receiving blanket is what Linus is going to go home from the hospital in, now. The quilt is adorable, and I am just so touched that I was given such amazing pieces of my family's history. My other grandmother, Nana, sent an amazingly thoughtful gift (as if the jogging stroller wasn't enough!) She did a bunch of research and sent a huge pile of cloth diapers with information about a woman in Maine who just started her own cloth diaper service. How neat!
And I thought one of the gifts from the soon-to-be Grandma Heintz was great: a "Red" onesie from Gap. If you don't know, their "Red" line donates profits to help eliminate AIDS in Africa. We do know that the 60 year old receiving blanket is going to the hospital, and we finally got our diaper bags from soon-to-be Nana Deysher to put it in. They are both from LL Bean, but you can see which one is the "dude" bag. Finally, the Charley Harper theme of much of the party was extended when we opened up TWO certified Charley Harper prints from the soon-to-be Heintz Grandparents! We were shocked. The two they selected both have special meaning: "Birdie" reminds us of Eric's paternal Grandmother, and the "Coniferous Cardinal" one reminds me of New England, and us of the cardinal couple that is in love with each other, and with our deck! And if that wasn't enough, the last gift we opened was a joint gift from a bunch of our friends. A gift card to frame art, and...a SIGNED PRICKLY PAIR print! There was some concern that 2 of the same print may have been purchased between all those getting prints, but it couldn't have worked out better. We got our top 3 favorite Harper prints. What is even more amazing is 1) the Prickly Pair is discontinued, and 2) Eric and I were just about to order these prints ourselves. Now, we have a trio of our favorite prints to go up in a nursery or kid's room! I love that they are authentic, and will be something to pass along to our kids and their kids, etc. Art is very important to our family, and this was a truly thoughtful and meaningful gift.
Is this part even necessary? We are so thankful for this weekend. Thankful, blessed, excited...and even a little overwhelmed! By the way...this child will be the best dressed thing on the block for about 6 months. We do not need to purchase another piece of layette for this boy from 0-6 months!
I do want to acknowledge that earlier in the week my friend Sour Kraut went above and beyond and organized a work shower. I was STUNNED, and completely taken aback. She lured me into the conference room with the temptation of free food leftover from some "meeting." Well, there was food, but there was also the entire company! I got amazing gifts, and it was a "green shower," despite many people's confusion as to how to accommodate. It was so much fun! One funny part was that there was our 1 male employee (who actually just left to start med school...not because the shower scared him) who just played along with such a great attitude. He did take pause when they started measuring my belly, and I sort of did it for him (it's not like they were measuring my cup size!). Anyway, there were "green" party favors, lots of lemonade homemade treats, and wonderful gifts. I had to share a picture of some additional cute "organic" gifts that Sour Kraut and some others all went in on...
Name Clues: Well, Eric is now 82% sure of one of the names. I know, a whole 2%! Here is another clue:
-One of the middle names is Welsh and has been anglicized and is now used more as a girl's name.