UPDATE (JULY 8, 10:33 a.m.): Ashley shared all the adorable photos and moments from celebrating Dean at his 1st birthday and reflected on the party thrown in her little boy's honor on Instagram.
"What a magical day! Our sweet Dean turned 1 today, and we were so blessed to spend time with our loving family. Thank you all for sending us well wishes - this child is the most incredible human Michael and I could’ve been blessed to guide," she wrote about the party, which was attended by family.
In another post, she opened up about the importance of family, sharing, "Thankful beyond words that in these times of darkness and revolution, I have the privilege of showing my family how much they mean to me. I never take it for granted."
Go inside Dean's birthday celebration, below.
The original story continues below.
"Dean’s fantastic. He’s walking. We’ve been at the beach for the last month, so he’s just loving the water. He’s definitely a little water baby," The Real Housewives of Potomac mom told The Daily Dish in a phone interview in June, weeks before his big July birthday.
In an Instagram she posted of baby Dean enjoying the sun and sand in June, she opened up about how much joy he brings her: "The past 11 months have been the best times of my life. Even in this time of darkness and revolution, this baby is bright sunshine."
And what a year it's been since he was welcomed into the Darby household last summer. Actually, Dean has had a rather big influence on his mom's life in the last 12 months, with her RHOP Season 5 tagline reflecting her new life as a mother to the adorable tot: "Now that I got my baby, that's the only crap I take."
But his parents, including dad Michael Darby, have also been an influence on the now-1 year old as well. Well, sorta, as Ashley shared.
"I thought that I knew how he was going to be. Like, 'Oh, he’s gonna be this way. Like, he’s gonna be a mix of Michael and me and whatever that meant.' I just thought I was gonna see characteristics of myself and Michael and be able to pinpoint them, but in actuality, he is his own little human. He’s very gregarious; wants to talk to everybody. I mean, he will walk up to anyone and speak to them." she said. "We went and got take-out yesterday and the baby was with me and he walked up and tried to start speaking to this woman in whatever his language is. And everyone’s just laughing and joking, you know? Because seeing this baby, just whatever speech he was giving, it was, made everybody feel good. He’s just a really happy, active, charismatic kid."
Well, then that does sound like he follows in the footsteps of his mama. "Well, you know, he does love to dance. So, I definitely think I’m in there," she said. "I’m definitely in there."
But she also sees dad Michael's DNA peeking out every once and a while. "It’s interesting. I think so. He’s also a problem solver. So, he loves puzzles. He loves to try put things inside of other things which I didn’t think would happen 'til a little bit later, but he loves to do those things. He likes to be pragmatic and I’m really not that way, so there’s where I see elements of his dad coming in," she said.
Ashley celebrated Dean's first birthday on July 7 on Instagram, sharing photos from the day he was born, as well as photos of him playing with a birthday gift.
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