Well, we went and pulled it off. I’m not sure I’ll be ready to do it again in another year (or ever), but we pulled it off. And most importantly, the birthday girl had a ball partying in her pink bikini and digging into her smash cake (after about 10 minutes of daintily picking the sprinkles off one by one).
I will admit that fell into Pinterest land and started drinking the crafty mom Kool-Aid, which led me to think I could make my own cupcakes, smash cake, and unique party favors and do it all with style and grace. I forgot that I was…me. There was a definite moment the night before the party as I was standing there in our tiny kitchen surrounded by cake mixes, sprinkles, and ribbon where I just went – WHY? But with a little of God’s grace and some help from hubby and mom it came together just in the nick of time.
Family & Friends
We were so touched by how many family and friends came to celebrate with us – many driving from out of town! Our good friends Holly and Heyward were so kind to let us crash the pool at their townhome complex, and the venue couldn’t have been any more perfect for this.
And oh look! My sister and brother-in-law Josh made it to the party! Hehe.
Cake & Goodies
We did make those “beach bear” cupcakes that I mentioned in the first birthday party planning post, since Lucie’s nickname is Lucie Bear. We decided on Funfetti cake mix and store bought vanilla icing. We sprayed them with blue icing color spray for the “water” and sprinkled them with fine yellow sprinkles for the “sand.” Not sure if it’s clear from the photo, but the swimming tubes are gummy peach rings and the “beach towels” are cut up fruit roll ups.
We decided to make her smash cake, although after the cost of the Big Top Cupcake mold ($10 at Bed Bath & Beyond) I’m not sure we saved any real money. Besides a hole in the top we managed to cover from icing (from me forgetting to spray the mold with Pam), it turned out great. I would recommend a thicker cake mix for the mold. We used Betty Crocker Super Moist butter cake mix, but I’ve heard chocolate mixes with pudding work well for this.
For a bear-themed party favor, we stuffed candy into empty bear honey jars. I thought I would get all creative and make little bear party hats with felt and pom poms, but I gave up on them after 3 lopsided cone-looking things and a couple of glue gun burns. They looked pretty dapper with just lids and bow ties.
I was a late afternoon party between meal times, so we stuck with finger foods:
I’m not sure we’d do the jalapeno bites again, but the tortellini skewers were a big hit. I think Lucie even found a new favorite snack.
After it was all over, Lucie collapsed for about 14 hours, we had some pals over for pizza and adult time, and overall had a blast the whole day. Almost makes me want to do it all over again. Almost…
My baby came into the world one year ago, Friday. A year ago today, Ken and I would have just been just getting home from the hospital and adjusting to life with a newborn. The first few months seem like a blur of diaper changes, sleepless nights, and spit-up stains. I blinked, and then somehow she was already smiling, sitting up, and developing a personality.
“She’s such a…person,” Ken still often comments in amazement. She now has a full-fledged mind of her own, a strong will, sense of humor and intense curiosity about her. Every little thing she does is amazing. Sometimes we will be sitting in the living room watching a movie, and then I’ll realize that I haven’t been watching the movie but staring at Lucie for the past half hour and smiling as she cruises around on the furniture and entertains herself with random objects (usually not her actual toys).
What’s also amazing is the amount of love in her life. We have the most amazing family and friends. They have showered her with love and gifts since she was in the womb. Even people who we hadn’t seen in a long time or didn’t know that well were eager to help welcome her into the world with gifts and kind words.
I try to make a lot of compilation videos in iMovie so that I’m actually doing something with the footage and pictures of her that I collect, so here is one that I made for her first birthday. My sister and her husband Josh also surprised us the morning of her birthday with a sweet birthday video since they couldn’t be there to celebrate with us. It was so sweet they took the time to do that.
Birthday party post to follow soon – consider this the sentimental post 🙂
My little sister Caroline was kind enough to create an entire post on her blog to give my blog a shout-out. She said I was trying to hide this blog from her but I really wasn’t. She is always doing nice things like that. Her blog is way cooler, because she and her husband (A) actually go on road trips and do lots of interesting things and (B) she is actually a good photographer.
It was their FOURTH anniversary yesterday, and you’ll never find a better couple in matching Chacos.
I miss my sister all the time now that she lives in Austin, especially since she is the best aunt ever and Lucie adores her. Besides being an amazing aunt, here are some other reasons why Caroline rocks:
- She is naturally beautiful. I have never ever seen a bad picture of this girl – yet she’s not one of those people who obsesses over makeup or clothes. There is just something about her that is radiant, and you can’t say that about just anyone.
- She is adventurous. She and her husband took off and moved to Portland a few years ago just cause they felt like it. And it’s pretty cool.
- She is definitely NOT a “J.” My Myers-Briggs type is ESTJ, which basically means I am an ass. The part I hate most about it is the J, which means “Judging.” Now I don’t know what her type is, but I guarantee there is no J involved. She has nothing but love for everyone, which is why she has more friends than pretty much anyone.
- One time when she was probably like 2 and could barely even walk, my dumb ass almost set the yard on fire but she put it out. True story!
- She is thoughtful. All the time.
I love you, LiLi!
I honestly can’t fathom a world where I had the money, time, or creativity to plan a first birthday party for Lucie that looks like this:
This is almost ridiculously gorgeous, and I’d love to be able to put on such a production (mainly to post the pictures on Facebook, let’s be real). But here I am with just over a month left until Lucie turns one. We just spent all of our money fixing our dog, who is deathly allergic to everything. I recently started a new full-time job, we’re still working on our house, and I can barely find time to get my butt to the gym.
Who has the time and money for this stuff? Really, I want to know.
Anyhow, Pinterest has been my best friend as I try to plan an affordable yet memorable first birthday celebration for Lucie. We decided on a teddy bear theme, since we nicknamed her “Lucie Bear” when she was still in the womb. She’s now known as “The Bear,” “LB,” “Baby Bear, or, occasionally, “you messy little troll.” A bear theme seemed more appropriate.
Our budget is very small. It’s hard to justify spending loads of money on something she won’t even remember. The main goal is for everyone to enjoy themselves – especially the birthday girl. She’s a total water baby, so it made sense to have the party at a friend’s outdoor pool.
These cupcakes looked simple enough to make myself, and they’re also super cute. I’ll probably make these instead of splurging on big birthday cake:
Instead of ordering party centerpieces that will most likely be thrown away, I was thinking it would be cute to order a few books like this on Amazon and use them as centerpieces. Maybe surround them with little bowls of “bear” snacks, or pictures of Lucie throughout her first year.
I also love the idea of clothespinning photos to a string for additional decorations. This is especially neat for a one-year-old’s party, so friends and relatives who don’t get to see her much can see how much she has grown and changed.
Party favors are a little tricky since there won’t be many kids, and the kids that are there will be different ages. I was thinking maybe some mini Uno cards (fun for families), bubbles (which Lucie loves) and candy of some sort.
It’s shaping up nicely – in my head, at least. This should be interesting come showtime!
We celebrated my grandma “Memo’s” 80th birthday last weekend at Lake Martin. This is a woman who epitomizes class. She is generous, kind, strong, beautiful, and always put together. She’s always been there for her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren for everything. I can’t remember a time growing up when she wasn’t present for a birthday party, graduation, or any other milestone. We adore her.
It was wonderful to see my aunt and cousins. Lucie even got to meet her 4-month-old second cousin Briggs for the first time and spend some quality time with her older cousin, June. My sister made the trip from Austin, and although it was a short visit we always LOVE spending time with Auntie LiLi.
Lucie really, really loves her aunt. I have never seen her laugh as hard as she did in the video in the last post. I wish we had these kinds of weekends more often.