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I can’t believe Maddox turned two on Sunday! Part of me feels like I can’t believe he’s ONLY two and the other part of me can’t believe how quickly the past two years have flown by.

Kiersten and I decided to have a birthday party for him and we were lucky enough to have most of our family there and some great friends as well. Maddox is pretty much obsessed with animals (Quick: Name another 2 year old who prefers watching Nat Geo to cartoons), so we decided on a “Party Like an Animal” theme. And it absolutely didn’t disappoint.

We’ve spent the better part of this month figuring out how to decorate and make the party fun for everybody. Most of the decorations were handmade: From the birthday banners down to the party hats for the animal figurines to even the candle holders. We put a lot of sweat equity into this party. And it didn’t disappoint. Seeing the happiness on Maddox and his friends’ faces throughout the day made it all worthwhile. Flip through the slideshow above to see just a few of the decorations.

I always told Kiersten when we decide to have children, I don’t want a December birthday. December is just a hectic month with the holidays and my father-in-law Matias’ (December 25th), Kiersten, and my brother Bradd’s birthday (December 26). I know Matias, Kiersten, and Bradd all have their birthday somewhat lost or meshed with Christmas due to their close proximity to the holiday. I didn’t want that to happen for my child.  But lo and behold, we had our little bundle of joy one week before Christmas. That’s why we have something called a “Birthday Tree” instead of a Christmas Tree, Channukah Bush, or whatever you’d like to call it. We decorate it with whatever theme Maddox’s party will be, this year animals. The day after his birthday it’s a Christmas tree. The only issue we’ve had in our two years of doing it is Maddox now sings “Happy Birthday” to himself whenever he sees a Christmas tree around town. I’m sure that will change by next year, but it’s definitely hilarious to see him singing to himself when we’re out and about.

You can view the full album here.

We’d like to thank everyone who contributed and came to our celebration for Maddox. But, whether you were able to make it to the party or not, if you’re reading this, you probably have played an important part in our lives and we couldn’t be more appreciative. Thank you for being a part of our lives and helping us feel rich in love. I hope these pictures bring you as much joy as they do for us.