*Note: If you’re only interested in party pictures, skip to the next Note in this post. This first part is just some background info to the actual day-of that I felt pertinent to the story*
Here’s the funny thing about events … you can plan and plan ‘til your heart’s content, but sometimes life just gets in the way.
Little-known fact about me: I’ve been a migraine sufferer since I was two years old. So, you know, as long as I can remember. And when I woke up Saturday morning my first thought was God, no. Because I knew one was coming.
On my daughter’s 1st birthday.
On the day of her party.
On the day when our house would soon fill with celebrating family and friends.
I tried my best to head off the migraine with copious amounts of medicine and caffeine and managed to make it through the set-up but once the actual party started at 4 pm, I was done. I welcomed the guests, got a few photos of-and-with Avery, snapped some quick pics of the decor and dragged myself upstairs to lay down in darkness while the party went on without me. I crawled back downstairs for the birthday song and Ave’s first taste of cake, and then returned to the solace of my bedroom in utter agony and to be fair, sadness. I effectively missed my child’s first birthday party, y’all. Which sucks. And getting hit with a wicked flu the day after? Another kick in the pants.
But you know what? Nothing can be done about it now. I did my best, but things happen. Ruminating on it only makes them worse, and we’ll give it a go again next year! I’ve heard the party was a success, with happy children, full guests and an adorable birthday girl so that’s all that matters. And so, may I present to you … Avery’s 1st birthday party! (the official post):
*Note 2: Given the migraine I unfortunately didn’t get quite as many photos as I’d planned to, and most of them were taken just as the party started so bear with me and try to use your imaginations to fill in the holes*
As with Mason’s party, I’d set up a board for Avery’s birthday on my Pinterest page a few months ago. I got the idea for the theme simply because sometimes on rare (very rare) occasions in the car she’d stop crying if I sang Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star to her. Which makes it as good an endorsement as any for her favourite song, dontcha think? It also seemed like a sweet and simple concept to follow. Just … stars. Everywhere.
See that? That was my diy star mobile, an idea that was sparked upon seeing this image from Sandra Kleist’s blog, The Winding Road. It hung from the light over the sweets table, and added the perfect touch to the decor. I considered using regular string like I see most mobiles done with, but in the end went with twine because (a) it fit my more-rustic theme, and (b) I don’t have a sewing machine, and there’s no way on this green earth that I will spend the time hand-stitching stars one-by-one. Which reminds me … I think I took photos of the creation process for the mobile, so if enough people are interested I could make a post about it. Just let me know!
Since we’re at the table, here’s what the set-up looked like:
A large fruit tray was added later. (See all that snow in the background? Nice. Welcome to Canada). This table housed the treats, cake, favours and guest book. The tablecloths were two plastic ones purchased from the dollar store … I ruffled the pink one by grasping small sections with my fingers and pulling them apart slightly, and simply pinned the gold to create swag.
For favours each child received homemade peppermint glitter playdough and a star-shaped cookie cutter (which was attached to the back of the jar, and is kind of hard to see in this photo. Migraines, you know?). I found the containers at the Dollarstore; twine, a star cutout and sparking gold washi tape completed the package.
Please never, ever buy playdough again … I’ll be doing a blog post on this in a few days since I’ve got an awesome extra-squishy recipe to follow and I want y’all to learn how simple it is to make!
Soft sugar cookies (made by my mom!) were iced in light pink with edible gold and pink flakes.
I made a batch of star-shaped Rice Krispie pops a few weeks prior, drizzled them in melted pink chocolate and then froze them until needed. I’ve done this a few times now, and they always taste wonderfully fresh, so trust me!
We asked guests to sign the book Someday by Alison McGhee for Avery with a wish, hope, or dream they had for her.
I used an inexpensive plastic frame (you know those $0.99 ones you can buy at Wal-Mart or the Dollarstore?) turned on it’s side to hold the sign. The label on the inside of her book read:
Sweet Avery, the wishes in this book were written for you by loved ones at your 1st birthday party. Cherish them always! November 10th, 2012
And now, my favourite part of the decor … the cake!
Ahhhhh …. gorgeous. Seriously. I am in love. And isn’t that the cutest itty-bitty smash cake for the birthday girl? I wish the colour showed more true-to-life than it does in these photos. A beautiful pale pink cake, softly ruffled in fluffy, shiny icing.
This was my first time working with Swiss Meringue Buttercream, and it was to.die.for. I 100% followed the “Swiss Meringue Buttercream” tutorial and recipe given by the amazing Rosie at Sweetapolita, and I urge you to do the same. While intimidating to make, it was actually quite simple and tasted ah.mah.zing. Light, buttery and just a hint of sweet … my guests were raving about it, many saying that they don’t normally “like” icing. The actual cake was Sweetapolita’s Chocolate Celebration Cake, and I followed her tips on how to ice it in the style I did. And believe me, it was simple. Simple, simple, simple. I won’t be doing a tutorial on this as the links at Sweetapolita do a better job than I ever could, but trust me … you need to try the buttercream.
*sigh* Yummy memories.
Party decor followed the star theme. My fireplace was awash in sparking celestial bodies with ribbons hanging down as backdrop.
This ruffled pink “1” (made with cupcake liners!) was supposed to be hanging on the front door, but at the last minute we decided to keep it inside.
Hundreds of stars (ok … maybe 20) hung from the ceiling throughout the main floor.
And party guests used glitter glue to paint star ornaments (homemade from Crayola Model Magic).
A few more party pictures:
And here’s the closest we got to a family pic this celebration:
Yah … oops.
Well, that’s all I’ve got, peeps! While my attendance at the party didn’t work out like I’d hoped (but how ‘bout my fake-it-til-ya-make-it photo appearances?), it is what it is. Baby girl’s one, that’s all that matters. We’ll get ‘im next year, tiger!