Friday, October 25, 2013

abi's birthday celebration

So, if you're new here let me explain just a little bit about the background of this party. We have decided that with four kids it's a little crazy to allow each kid to have a big "friend" birthday party every year. If that's what you want to do, more power to you but we just feel that our kids don't need a HUGE party every year and really I cannot plan a huge party every year for four kids (especially with three of them being in the same month). So we decided to have big "friend" birthday parties when they turn 1, 5, 10 and 15 (and we'll discuss parties for older years later). It also works out nicely that the girls won't have their big parties on the same year! yay!! 

Abi just turned one. So she got a big party. It ended up being a very intimate party but I still had to go all out! This is my one time to spoil my little baby and to get crafty. Yes, the party was more for me than Abi but I hope that one day she'll look back at the photo album of her first birthday and know how much I love her!! I had a great time planning this party and as with every party I plan I didn't get to do half of the stuff I wanted to do but I still love how this one turned out. 

The search for a theme started about two months ago with a question on facebook. I got lots of great responses and started a pinterest board with ideas for Abi's party. I thought about a Hungry Hungry Caterpillar party, a rainbow party, a vintage doll party and settled on a "paper doll"/just stay little party. I really really needed an excuse to buy the On Parade fabric from Sarah Jane Studios and this party was the reason. I also LOVE Sarah Jane's other illustrations and her paper dolls so that is what finalized the theme for Abi's party. I also wanted this to be a cute, pink, girly party. 

I had every intention of creating printables for the party decorations until I stumbled on something that made me forget that altogether. I was ordering the photos for Abi's banner and "1" from snapfish when I noticed a little section that I had never seen before. It's under "prints" and is called "print at home" after a little exploring I decided to download a free printable birthday party kit. I wasn't positive that I would use the kit but I knew that it would save me a TON of time from designing my own and would save me money from buying some on etsy because the kit was FREE!! yay!! I didn't use all of the pieces but I did end up using the happy birthday banner, and the favor bag labels and the table tent signs. I am so glad I stumbled upon this free kit because it was just what this party needed and even better because it saved me a ton of time. 

So, for the party favors I decided to give each kid a little set of paper dolls along with some cute outfits all designed by Sarah Jane. I put them in a sandwich baggie and folded the top down and stapled the favor bag label to the top and called it good. Sarah Jane also offers this free bookmark on her website so I decided to print one of those for all the kids too!

The party food was simple yet delicious. I made a few cake balls with leftover cake from Naomi and Hannah's cakes (after they got shaped into numbers) and had them frozen until I needed them for this party. I decided to dip some pretzel rods in chocolate because I love sweet and salty together. I made a new cake recipe for Abi's actual birthday cake and while the frosting/decorating of Abi's birthday cake didn't come out AT ALL like I wanted it to I decided to not worry about it as there will be plenty of time to make more cakes! BUT the cake was delicious and I'll be making it again in the future. It was called Pumpkin Pie Crunch and was like a pie on the bottom with a layer of crunchy cake on top...soooo delicious! I made a homemade whipped topping that got whipped too long and had added some vanilla pudding to stabalize it and while it didn't look pretty it tasted pretty good. I also made some cucumber cups (my mother-in-law made the cups) that were stuffed with chicken salad...such a great appetizer that was easy to make, had a big impact on the table and was delicious. My mom helped me out by bringing a veggie tray and some puppy chow. And I made some sparkling apple juice for everyone to drink (it was just two cans of frozen apple juice concentrate and a 2 liter of ginger ale). So, pretty simple yet delicious and satisfying. I also had some black bean pumpkin chili hanging out in the crock-pot for dinner once the party was over.

At the party we didn't play any games, Abi didn't open any presents but we spent time hanging out with our family and friends and just had fun celebrating Abi. She looked cute in her birthday dress, which was too big but too cute to even matter and she loved the attention!! So, here are some photos from Abi's first birthday party. I'll be making her snapfish birthday album soon! If you want to see why I use snapfish you can refer to this post about albums!


















I really kind of like the look of the trend of "naked" cakes right now, meaning just frosting on the top and between layers but not on the sides so I decided to do that with the "1" cake. Again, my whipped cream got whipped too much so it was a funny texture but it tasted good. I didn't have enough time or heavy whipping cream to try again! bummer!

 Abi's little cake..
She wasn't too sure what to think at first.


But had fun playing with it and eventually ate some of it. We figured after trying to eat all of Hannah's cake that she'd just go for it but she didn't. oh well.



Loved this moment!!

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