Drama With a Capital I-K-E
Of Second Birthdays & Feral Noodles

Zero One Two

It's Ike's birthday tomorrow. But bear with me for just a second.

I'd never even heard of Alabama Shakes before they were on SNL back in February. Jason and I were sitting on the couch (on Sunday morning, naturally, watching a recording because we never stay up that late anymore) when they first took the stage and started to play "Hold On." We both sort of...froze after a minute, as we were hit with that thunderstruck feeling you get when you hear music that you just really, really love. 

And I loved everything about them. The rich, Janis-like voice coming from the lead singer; the crazy, completely unselfconscious way she contorted her mouth to create bluesy, primal sounds; the way the whole band let the song casually, effortlessly unfurl with a slow burn to a frenzied climax without thrashing around on stage or pyrotechnics or or props or naked body paint dipped in glitter. Just good, old-fashioned rocking the hell out. It probably took me all of 30 seconds to go from "Who?" to "Holy shit, I need this music in my life every single day from now on."

When the song was over, Jason and I looked at each other.

"WHOA," we said, in unison.


There was so much going through my head on the day Ike was born, most of it of the second-guessing variety. Another baby. Another boy baby. Another c-section birth, another breastfeeding crapshoot. Easy baby vs. difficult. Typical vs. special needs. Another whole damn child, what were we thinking?

I remember pushing all those thoughts aside on the operating table and focusing on the acoustic ceiling tiles. It was my third time in the same operating room. I'd been prepped for the birth on the very same bed where I'd been prepped for Ezra's birth, and the very same bed where I'd had to unfortunately labor for several hours prior to Noah's birth, while waiting for a birthing suite to open up. One did, eventually, but I ultimately ended up back in this very same operating room. 

Another baby. Another boy baby. Another another, more of the same, just more and probably harder. Because ANOTHER. 

And then I heard him cry. 

And I was thunderstruck. Emotions exploded out of my chest and up through my face, and all of them were happy and good. I loved everything about him already. He was perfect, already. I couldn't remember life without him, already.

For the third time, Jason brought me a squished, closed-eyed little newborn, wrapped in the same hospital blanket, wearing the same pink and blue hospital hat. For the third time, I kissed his swollen cheeks over and over and pushed back the edge of the hat to see his hair. For the third time, Jason and I looked at each other. 

"WHOA," we said, in unison. 


Dear Ike,

You are two years old now. You are still everything. You are still perfect. You make me laugh and smile every single day, and you surprise me just as often. There is nothing "another" about you, because you are you. You are the one we didn't even realize we were all waiting for, and I am so happy and grateful to have you in my life, every single day, from now on.



Music: "Hold On" by Alabama Shakes



Happy Birthday Ike!


Happy, happy cake day, Baby Ike! I refuse to NOT call you "baby." :)


So precious. Happy birthday little bro.


If anyone is missing their feelz, they're running down my cheeks.

Happy birthday, little Ike!


I'm looking at my 8 week old as I read this and can't help but tear up! Well said Amy, and happy birthday big boy Ike!


Ah, you done gone and made me cry again.


Happy, happy birthday sweet angel baby Ike!! Can't believe how he has grown. Props to you Amy for tracking that time and documenting it. Priceless!!!

Korinthia Klein

That's beautiful. Happy Birthday Ike!


Happy Birthday Ike! 2 years, already? And also, thank you for introducing me to a new band. Here I come iTunes.


Happy birthday, Baby Ike! You are just the sweetest.

Sassy Apple

A super sweet birthday montage AND a new band to love. Thanks for both. Happy Birthday Baby Ike!


Mine was two yesterday. I've been following your blog since the beginning and not yet commented, despite the fact we are TOOTH TWINS (as a teen, one of mine also grew sideways while still in my gum. Although since I'm in the UK not the US, they just yanked it out and left the gap instead of doing the thing of lassoing it and slowly reeling it to the surface. You crazy, perfect-smiled Yanks!)

However, reading this? Sobbing buckets. x


My little boy will turn 2 in September, and between yesterday's and today's posts, my heart just swells with that weird sad/happy "too fast!" and "mine too!" And whoo mama, can I identify with the whole "joos/milk" thing. WTF, kid?

Kari Perry

I look forward to your kids' birthdays just to see your montages and read your thoughts on the time that has passed with the birthday boy in question. Yet another sublime montage of a very happy boy and his awesome fam.


Choked up watching that video. What a perfect little silly-smiling 2 year old boy (and yes--an amazing song!).

Happy birthday Ike!

Sandra Timmerman

Wishing you all a very very happy birthday party tomorrow.
You made me realize just how precious my kids are to me :-)
God bless

jennie burk

This is by far my favorite post by you!!!!


Aw, I watched this with one of my almost-one year old's watching over my shoulder and it made me so excited for what we have to look forward to over the course of the next year.

Happy birthday Ike!

And well done Amy and Jason for producing such god damn cute kids!! X


Happy birthday Baby Ike, from my three-boy family to yours!


When I first heard that song I was driving to school on a Saturday at 7:30 in the morning. I texted my brothers and sisters telling them to grab a beer and download it immediately. Such great music. And perfect for Ike. He is so awesome. I just love your family! Every year and every video brings tears to my eyes! Happy birthday, Ike!!!

Hi, I'm Natalie.

Happy birthday!

Also: I'd never heard of Alabama Shakes until now. Goosebumps. Ty.


I will save this post and make my husband read it when I'm trying to convince him to have a third. :) Happy birthday Ike!


STOP IT, this is the cutest thing ever and you are making me want to have a third baby so STOP IT!! And hbd, Ike:)


On the days when my 13 year old gives me fits, I am going to read this post. Because, yes. Just yes. And thank you.

Happy Birthday to you, Ike!



Happy Birthday Baby Ike!

It's so fun watching you and your big brothers grow up. Thanks for sharing them with us, Amy!

If Ike is two that means Avery will be two in only six weeks and I'm really not sure if I'm ready for that to happen.



My Squishy baby turns 2 tomorrow too! Ez is about six months older than my oldest, so I read the weekly calendar while I was pregnant with her. I was mad jealous when you posted about going to the hospital for Ike(I had been there overnight already) and then had a baby before mine was born. My guess for his name was Toby. Happy Birthday Baby Ike! Maybe one day we'll meet in a Chipotle!


Are you implying that there's something wrong with naked body paint dipped in glitter? Because if naked body paint dipped in glitter is wrong, I don't want to be right. So there. And of course the Shakes are awesome.


Happy birthday to Baby Ike! Amy your birthday videos are one of my favorite things. So full of love and joy.


Happy Birthday Ike! We have a lot in common...three boys aged 8, almost 5 and almost two over here. My middle's bday is tomorrow! You always make me smile and relate. Thanks!


That episode of SNL was the first Saturday night home with our first baby. My husband and I both fell in love with the song and it was my music of choice to dance around my kitchen to at 4 am with a fussy baby.

Guess I'm just trying to say I bawled my way through that whole video with my 4 month old sleeping in my arms. :)


Happy Birthday, sweet Ike! I can't believe you are already two! You are adorable.

I'm thrilled that you love Alabama Shakes. I am lucky that my brother knows the band. They pop up at functions here in town (unannounced) a lot. I got to see them do am acoustic private set right before the album came out. They are as nice as they are talented!


Happy Birthday Ike!


Happy Birthdau Baby Ike! Can't believe he is two already!

Maxine Dangerous

LOVE. :D Happy birthday, Ike!!

Suzy Q

What a cutie patootie! Ike with his BFF Charlie are beyond adorable.

Becca Lynn

Happy Birthday, yesterday, Toddler Ike!!!!

Also, what video editing software do you use??? You always do an amazing job with these birthday videos!! :-)


So, I haven't visited in about a month, but I just read the two posts showing up on your front page. The Ike birthday post describes exactly what I will be doing two weeks from now, and it made me cry.

The second (Ike's Juice meltdown), describes to a TEE! how life with my 20 month old has been for the last two weeks. Thank you for mirroring my life back to me so that I feel a little less crazy.

Ohlala Maman

Happy birthday Ike! I love your montages, thank god there are three to look forward to every year!!


How is he TWO?!?

Happy, happy, friend.


Caleb will be two in about six weeks, and I remember reading your blog when I was pregnant and following your Adventures with Ike while I was not far behind. That can't have been two years ago! I feel like that grandma kids always try to avoid at family reunions, but time goes by soooo fast. Stop and treasure, all that good stuff. Happy birthday, Ike!!


What a candid and adorable reminiscence. Makes me miss those times when my boys were cute little tykes. I wish I had documented those precious moments like you are doing now. Keep it up.

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