Kai’s 2nd Birthday Party!

We still cannot believe our little baby turned two at the end of April. It’s been almost a full month since we hosted a Moana-themed birthday party for him at Normandy Farms Campground.

Michael and I were on the fence about having another big birthday party for Kai, but after speaking with Michael’s mom we were convinced we had to have something for him! He’s been obsessed with watching Moana.¬† I even got him the soundtrack to listen to while driving in the car.

Why a campground? Our family had recently purchased a small travel trailer back in January to try it out. We had a chance in April, right after my husband, Michael, finished his busy season. Kai and Stanley both loved it!


We took some pictures of Kai and made an invitation. I got some invitations printed at a local CVS on 4×6 photo paper, and then I glued them to some colored card stock. On the back on the invitations, I printed out a piece of paper with some information about the campground, directions, and the guest policy.

I also eventually created a Facebook event (to stay socially connected).


Our initial thought was to create a donut tower for Kai’s birthday cake, since he LOVES donuts!

So, we ended up ordering 3 dozen donuts from Confectionery Designs in Rehoboth, MA.  The owners needed us to place the donut order by Friday, 4/13 to be ready and picked up the morning of Saturday, 4/28. These donuts are so delicious!

These are the flavors we ordered:
6 – vanilla glazed –¬†all green frosting
6- maple bacon –¬†with bacon glaze
6- jelly filled – sugar coated
6- lemon raspberry Рwith raspberry glaze on top
6- banana cream –¬†chocolate frosted top filled with crushed bananas
6- cinnamon –¬†with a cinnamon / streusel glaze

Total price for donuts: $120.00

We anticipated about 20 people to come, but I wanted to make sure we had enough donuts since we weren’t sure about the cake. But, we ended up getting a large and fantastically-designed cake!

The story:¬†My mother-in-law, Christine, ended up offering the put the donut tower together. Then, she decided she was going to make a cake. The plan was the cake was going to sit on top of the tower of donuts. Well, the cake just ended up being so big and super heavy that the cupcake tower stand wouldn’t be able to hold the weight of the cake.

Here are some pictures of the cake and the donut tower!


Now for the food, we were going back and forth on what to serve. My husband initially wanted to keep it simple by only grilling burgers and hot dogs, but in the end we did neither.

Here are some pictures of the food we served: pulled pork with sweet Hawaiian rolls, seafood salad on croissants, assorted snacks, and beverages.

Kai had so much fun playing outside and seeing everyone! I can’t thank Michael’s family enough for helping us get the leis, paint the Kakamora coconuts, baking cookies, creating a wonderful cake, and helping Kai open presents!

Here are some pictures from the party!

Kai is two! <3

Mother’s Day blessings

Warning: some pictures in this blog post might be uncomfortable to look at.

Mother’s Day is this Sunday! I am so blessed to have such a wonderful family. I have one son, Kai, who just turned two. And one dog son, Stanley, who recently turned three.

My very first Mother’s Day with Kai back in 2016 was very tough on our family.

It’s still hard for me to talk about what actually happened to Kai. But I think after two years, it’s time to face my fears.

Kai is Born

Kai was born a healthy baby boy weighing in at 9 lbs 3 oz. As first-time parents I was nervous bringing him home from the hospital on our own. But we did it! We got him in the infant car seat and drove home from the hospital! Stanley, our dog, greeted us happily and loved to sniff him and lick Kai’s baby feet.

Breastfeeding was painful at first, but I totally got into a nice rhythm. I didn’t expect him to eat so frequently, but he did!

Off Day

About 8 days after he was born, I noticed he was having an “off” day. He didn’t want to eat, which was very odd for him. I called his pediatrician around 11am after he didn’t eat for a few hours.

He said to keep an eye on him. Sometimes babies have a weird day. I checked his temperature, and he had a slight one. Nothing too high. He just kept wanted to sleep all day long.

It was about 2pm. He had only nursed for about 20 minutes = very strange. AND, he was starting to make these grunting noises.

I called his doctor again, and they advised me to bring him in to get checked out. I waited until my husband came home from work, about 2:30pm. Then we both took him to see his pediatrician.

The nurse took his temperature, and then a moment later, his doctor came in. He was very calm with us, but informed us Kai needed to go to the emergency room at Hasbro Children’s Hospital because he had a 102 fever. That was not normal. Something was definitely wrong with him. He informed us that we may be there for a couple of days or a week while they did testing on him, so they told us to go back home and pack a few clothes and things before we bring him to the hospital.

I was freaking out.

We only had Kai for a week on our own, and I felt so defeated and helpless.

As we were packing clothes, my husband remained calm and was my rock.

Emergency Room

After we parked at the hospital and walked through the stanchions of the emergency check-in, the nurses checked his temperature. I explained what was going on and Kai’s pediatrician already called to let them know we were coming. He had a 103 fever.

We were immediately directed to a room. I guess we skipped the entire line of people ahead of us. There were kids who were bleeding, and we took priority over them!

My little precious baby was lying on this gigantic metal table. They were trying to draw blood and also hook him up to IVs so he could get the necessary fluids he was lacking.

There must have been 5-6 people working on him at once! The phlebotomist was having a lot of trouble finding a good vein. They went in both of this arms, his hands, his legs, and they finally got something in his foot.

The doctors had to put a tube down Kai’s throat to get air into his lungs because they said he was having trouble breathing because he had an infection. We were fortunate to have a really level-headed and young female doctor who did this successfully.

They also needed to do a spinal tap to see if Kai got pneumonia. The doctor recommended we didn’t watch because it might be too much for us. I ended up pumping because I felt so full from Kai not feeding the entire day.

They had to admit him into the hospital, and he was in the emergency room area and was moved to critical care. The night nurses in the section were so nice and caring. They made sure we were all taken care of.

I was very distraught this whole time, and I was super hungry because we hadn’t eaten lunch or dinner yet.

Family Support

I didn’t want Michael’s parents to see Kai in the emergency room, but we had asked them to take Stanley out and feed him dinner at our house. Then, bring us food because we were so hungry and for them to visit us when Kai was all settled into his room.

Of course, Kai’s grandparents were very worried so they showed up in the emergency room.

It was hard for me to watch them react to Kai lying on the table. They were crying, and it made me even more sad, mainly because we couldn’t do anything. I wanted this time to be a private time for our family, but I think Michael was relieved to see his parents there because he was trying to hold it together and be strong for me.

Sometimes it’s hard to ask for help, and I found this time to be quite difficult to reach out to the Lord. I prayed in quiet, but I did not feel comfortable and did not trust in group prayer.

Translation: it’s hard for me to openly share when something goes wrong vs. sharing good news. I guess I thought motherhood and parenthood was going to be flowers and bouquets. One week into it, and our son got admitted into the hospital.

Kai was on the breathing machine (ventilator) with the tube down his throat, and feeding tubes through his nostrils for 3 whole days. I pumped and gave my milk to him. I was exhausted. My in-laws were with us the entire time! They stayed with Kai when Michael and I needed to grab some food or take a walk.

It was really very loyal for them to be by Kai’s side. We are so blessed to have them in our lives. They helped us a lot with our dog son, Stanley, during this tough time.

My sister-in-law was going to fly up from Texas to visit Kai, but we really wanted some privacy. At that point, she hadn’t even got to meet her nephew yet. We didn’t want to have more people visiting Kai to be sad together. I know, it sounds weird, but we didn’t really want a pity party. I never really had to go to the hospital before I gave birth to Kai, and I never had to visit anyone in the hospital before 2016. So, I wasn’t familiar with hospital/family etiquette so to speak. Anyways, Michael and I felt very helpless.

My parents had just visited Kai for a week after he was born. So they stayed back home in NY and didn’t visit Kai at the hospital while he was there. I think it was easier for us and them that they decided to stay away.


During the course of Kai’s stay, they tested him for a wide variety of infections. But everyday the doctors visited, they had no definitive answers as to what was causing Kai to have a fever and have trouble breathing.

Right after they took him off the ventilator, I felt such a strong sense of relief. I was so worried he was going to have trouble breathing on his own because of the infection.

My Turn

I felt feverish.

I asked the nurse at the station for a thermometer. I checked my temperature and sure enough, I had a fever. I also noticed some heavy and irregular vaginal bleeding. Yes, it was postpartum. It was abnormal bleeding.

After calling my GYN, they told me to go back to Women and Infants’, where I delivered Kai. Michael brought me to the emergency room, and my mother-in-law stayed with me while the nurses checked my temperature. And, the doctor came in, and I got checked out.

They admitted me.

I was getting treated for an infection too. They had to insert an IV and test my blood too. Of course, I had an allergic reaction to the first antibiotic they gave me. So, I was getting hives everywhere and they had to give me Benadryl through the IV. Boy, was I tired after that.

My First Mother’s Day

This was my view on my very first Mother’s Day. I did get a lovely text with a picture from my hubby:)

I did get to go see Kai the next day, thankfully.

At that point, they had to change the IV, and couldn’t find a good vein. They did find one right on his forehead, so they could administer the antibiotics.


They found out Kai and I both had Strep A. I think it was at 39 weeks they found out I had Strep B, so when I delivered Kai they gave me antibiotics through the IV. I guess the antibiotics during the delivery didn’t help Kai and me afterwards.

Kai was in the hospital for just over one week while I was in the hospital for 3-4 days.

We both got discharged the same day.

Back Home

Where we both got antibiotics to take at home. That was such a difficult time in our lives. We are happy to have that behind us, but I do think the hospital visit has made our family stronger.

We are blessed to have such a healthy, happy and smart 2 year old and are thankful for everything God has blessed us with throughout the years.

Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there who do such an amazing job <3