While recovering in the hospital with our new baby girls, my good friend came to visit and brought with her the most adorable welcome to the world present…pink and purple tutus that she had made. As a Mama of two boys before these princesses I had never been so in love with tulle in all my heart. I remember her saying that when she had finished them she was afraid they would be too small, we had all forgotten how small babies are! Right then and there I knew part of what the girls would be wearing for their first birthday party. Yes, this is how my mind works.
I’ve never been more pleased with my party planning results. I often have big ideas but don’t always end up making them happen. Not this time. Big ideas that were small in effort. The colors pink and purple threw up in my house. That and Pinterest.
First, the invitation. I got the idea for a silhouette invitation from a combination of Etsy and Pinterest. I just happen to be friends with one of the greatest invitation and paper designers, AND she just happens to do silhouettes! She gave me exactly what I was looking for. As a bonus she gave me the file of the silhouette so I’ll be able to have those framed in the future.
Second, the menu. I believe baby parties are best held in the morning. Babies have a tendency to be finicky at the worst possible times. I say you should catch them in the morning before the mood has a chance to strike! We had ours at 10:00 in the morning. This also meant breakfast foods — my favorites!! I served eggcakes, fruit, bagels, mini-muffins, coffee cake and most importantly, cupcakes! I will get you more details about the eggs later this week. You are going to want to make them, trust me! The fruit I (naturally) got the idea from Pinterest. I loved that they were individually separated, kid and grown-up friendly and cute for the table. While I was getting the fruit (strawberries, canteloupe, grapes, and blueberries) ready I had the idea to stick a strawberry in the bottom of the cone so that the bulk of the fruit would stay towards the top, also not allowing the cone to get soggy.
Second, decorations. Princess A has always been associated with purple (her nursery is purple) and Princess B has been pink (also pink nursery.) So it was only fitting to continue this into the party. No theme, just colors! I used an idea from Pinterest for inverted balloons. Included some shiny stars on the string and placed them in each of the doorways around the main level of the house. The scotch tape bugged me while I was hanging them but once the house was full of noise I realized no one was paying attention to how the balloons were hung.
Third, activity. My boys are May and September babies. Which means we always assume outdoor parties for them. With the girls in January I knew we wouldn’t have the luxury of our backyard to occupy the little people. I was trying to think of an activity for all ages that wasn’t elaborate, expensive, or a pain in rear. Fruit Loop necklaces were the perfect solution! I used our main dining room table to set up the area. Biggest Baby boy likes patterns which led me to consider separating the colors so that other kids could do patterns. I bought a bulk bag of the imitation cereal and spent a morning separating them into colors. Yes, pain in rear. And just in case it ever comes up in a trivia setting — Red is the number one color while blue and purple are what you see the fewest O’s in. Towards the end of the bag when I decided I’d had enough i thought to myself that I would never do this separating again. But then I set up the table. Yes, I would absolutely do this again. It turned out too cute!
I used Picnik to design the little card. Asked the floral department at my grocery for the floral sticks. Used old vases that I knew I was keeping around for something. The string is something I saw at the local craft store on clearance. We tied one end ahead of time so the kids could just start stringing. Everyone loved it!! And I was pleasantly surprised how few O’s were smashed in my carpet!
Fourth, some extra ideas and the favor. Typically I rely on the Target toll area to come up with my favor idea. I try to stay away from candy and more sweets. I always want it to be something for all ages AND something that the birthday guest of honor would like. I saw some ideas for Animal Crackers and since my girlies love these it seemed like the perfect fit. I was just going to buy the individual boxes for everyone but then I ran across this awesome template and kit from Avery. It came with the bags and the label stickers. I just had to download the template, design, print, stuff and seal. It took very little time, effort, money, etc. And ALL the guests were happy to take a bag with them! Another sign made usingPicnik. I used the R from the invitation sticker and incorporated a favorite Dr. Seuessism.
While out shopping for the party I came across a white wooden R. I originally thought I would figure out some way to string it for the front door. Then I saw pink and purple Sharpies at the office store and came up with a better idea! I asked each guest to sign it before they left!
I also fell upon these glitter R’s for one whole dollar — and in the pink and purple! I picked out a spool of cute ribbon and played until I got what you see. A front door ‘wreath’ for under five dollars!
My prized idea was the once we were ONE collage. I wrote last week about everyone trying to figure out who looks like who. I pulled together photos of all six of us from when we were one and placed out on display for the guests to see for themselves. I decided to use fridge magnets since everyone is always hanging in the kitchen. You could also make a poster board with the same idea. Or I also considered hanging them on ribbon and using up some wall space. The fridge worked for me but could be done so many different ways!
I think the most important part of a 1st birthday party is the cake face. I decided to do the cake first with the girls because I wasn’t sure they would make it through presents before a nap was needed. I didn’t want them to be tired and cranky for my favorite part. As it turned out they were ready for a nap right after the cake so we didn’t open presents while the guests were there. I had mixed feelings about it. I know on one hand people like to oh and ah over the cute little gifts and that some like to see their gift open. On the other hand it takes time and the babies really don’t care or know the difference. We opened them after the naps after all the guests had left. Some family was still around to enjoy the reactions. The brothers opened the gifts and the girls ate the tissue paper. When it was all said and done I much prefer it this way. One friend pointed out that it gave everyone more of a chance to catch up and socialize. I hope everyone agrees.
Here are my favorite cake faces to end this way long post. It was everything I wanted it to be! I’m so happy with the results and actually enjoyed myself too!