Friday 24 April 2015

Addison's 1st Birthday Carnival

Addison's 1st birthday has come and gone so quickly I feel like I already need to start thinking about her next birthday!
When thinking about Addison's party, Dave and I were on the fence with what to do. Do we just have family or do we invite all the people who have been involved in her first year? Do we hire somewhere? Um we have no money for a huge party, what can we do to still have a great day?

We decided on going all out on the people front, I think around 35 people were invited and maybe 30 showed up (including a few littlies). We decided to risk the weather and have it in our backyard (so risky for April!) and Dave mentioned a carnival/picnic type theme.

So I whipped up a few invites and asked people to bring a plate of food to share. We borrowed an amazing gazebo from a friend and jazzed it up with streamers and balloons, We used items lying in our yard (an old door, a pallet, a broken wooden ladder) to paint and turn into simple carnival games and bought some lollies to play 'Guess How Many In The Jar'. That was pretty much all we needed to have an awesome afternoon of party fun!

We put out all the chairs we could find and spread some picnic rugs on the ground with toys lying around for the under 1s. The food tables were chocka and it was a grazing style lunch.

The birthday girl managed to nap right before her party so she lasted most of the afternoon without any tears. I made a felt crown for her and made a banner that said 'ONE' that I attached under her high chair. We put her in the chair for most of the time because with so many people around, our delicate little girl would be easily overwhelmed. Food is a great distraction.

I tried to say a little speech about how much I appreciated everyone coming and having input into Addison's life over the past year but I ended up in tears and Dave refused to take over so I managed to get everyone singing Happy Birthday to distract from me crying (smooth Amy). We blew out her candle and offered her a smash cake.

A smash cake is a bit of a trend at the moment - you put a cake in front of a baby and take a video/photos of the child *hopefully* getting really messy into their first taste of delicious icing and cake.

Our child decided that having a huge cake in front of her was a bit overwhelming and after a bit of consideration she picked at the icing ever-so-slightly and proceeded to lick her fingers and that was basically the end of it. She loved the icing but didn't quite get the smash concept so I told the other children that were eying up the cake to dig in, which they did with much delight.

We then opened up the presents - Addison was so spoiled (THANK YOU!!) - and then we ate food and socialised for the rest of the afternoon. I had so much fun and was in my delegating element for set-up and pack-down.

It was a perfect day and I am so thankful for all the people involved in Addison's life (whether you made it to the party or not!) and I know that she will grow up feeling loved and part of a community where she has her own special part to play.

Ball Throw - knock down as many as you can!

Winner takes all!

Ring Toss - there were nails in the door and we used glow stick bracelets to throw

Drinks Station (chilly bin full of ice + soft drinks)

The cake for the grown ups - Banana Cake with Lemon Buttercream

Addison's Smash Cake - also Banana Cake with Lemon Buttercream. Both cakes made and iced by me :)

Streamers and balloons inside the Gazebo

Classic Addison

Birthday Throne

Before the food arrived!

Cake Smash*