Lara's First Birthday - The Big Party

Kathi and Rainer invited seven couples and their children to a Sunday afternoon BBQ and birthday party, on May 15. Four one-year olds! Any number of other kids! Hamburgers and hotdogs and chips and quacamole dip and tomato-and-mozzarella and, of course, birthday cake!

  1. The amazing birthday cake. They take a photograph and somehow create icing in the perfect copy of the photograph.

  2. Rainer and Nigel from across the street. Sad to say, Nigel and his wife Ana and their kids are moving to Madison, Wisconsin.

  3. Lara WILL NOT suffer the birthday hat to stay on her head.

  4. Kathi and Ana from across the street.

  5. I am ashamed to say I've forgotten her name ... in the background, Lara tugs on Grandma's skirt.

  6. This is a trick shot. The hat was on Lara for approximately 1.5 seconds. She does, however, enjoy cold pizza.

  7. Gimme pizza!

  8. All the kids love Lara, and vice versa.

  9. Julie is the next-door neighbor, and she and Lara are very used to each other.

  10. Julie and Lara smile for the camera. If Lara-smiling-for-the-camera often looks like she's looking off to one side - it's because Mom is standing over there waving and cooing and getting her to smile.

  11. A passel of friendly neighbors!

  12. Maeve Emily and her parents.

  13. Anna (the first of this group of one-year-olds to walk!) and her parents.

  14. Three of the four one-year-olds. (Well, Skyler, the boy, is a bit older, I think.)

  15. the four babies, with Skinnybones squealing a characteristic squeal.

  16. Anna and Skyler looking as though they're getting ready to do something.

  17. Maeve explains the theory of the stand-up UFO device to another baby.

  18. Jeff is the next-door neighbor. He and Lara are well acquainted.

  19. Babies playing in the living room. A sterner editor than I would cull some of these photos, but I don't have the heart - Lara looks so cute.

  20. The famous Ginger, the dog next door! Legend has it that Lara's first word was "Gin-ga." Ginger was not shy, and came right over and made herself comfortable on Rainer and Kathi's back deck (where the enticing aromas of grilled meat were evident.)

  21. A cameo of the lady of the day.

  22. A good friend came a bit later. Her boy is 16 months.

  23. The great present-unwrapping is under way. More legos!

  24. There's always something interesting happening on a plane closer to the floor.

  25. Kathi and Lara unwrap a gift.

  26. Ana (who is moving to Madison) will be sorely missed, not least by Lara, who reaches out for her whenever she sees her.

  27. "You see, you put the red guy here ..."

  28. It takes concentration.

  29. Mother and child.

  30. And father.

  31. This yellow bus is extremely popular. When you push it, red lights on top flash.

  32. The hard part is getting the little passengers in their seats.

  33. The biggest little yellow duckie in the world! Bathtime, here we come!

  34. Lara is captivating by more wrapping paper to rip.

  35. Anna has devised a unique way to walk - hanging onto Daddy's legs.

  36. The amazing birthday cake again, this time with the candle burning.

  37. The family.

  38. Kathi and Lara, the mood shot.

  39. Cutting the cake.

  40. Lara looks mischevious.

  41. The beginning of the cake sequence. Note how all is clean and tidy.

  42. Let's get started!

  43. I like this!

  44. The cake begins to adorn the face.

  45. Eating cake is serious business.

  46. The girls in the formal dining room are years beyond such first efforts.

  47. Time to inspect the paper plate!

  48. You lookin' at ME?

  49. One final holler-out to y'all from Lara!

Marianne Mueller
Last modified: May 15, 2005