Monday, May 16, 2016

Lucy Belle's 1st Birthday Party!

I've been planning Lucy's 1st birthday for weeks and weeks, and it'll probably take you that long to finish this post because there are a LOT of pictures! Her actual birthday was on Sunday, but we decided to do the party on Saturday so that we could have a day to relax afterward. Thank goodness we did, because this mama was tired! 

We went back and forth quite a bit as to whether or not we wanted to have a big party. We have a big back yard, and for awhile there we figured we'd rent some tents, tables, and chairs and throw a big celebration. However, as we got closer to having to finalize things we realized a big party wasn't a good idea for a few reasons: 1. Lucy gets super overwhelmed when there are a lot of people around (as you'll see later on in this post!), 2. Both dogs ended up having unexpected surgeries so that took a big chunk of change out of our party planning budget, and 3. When I can't control things, I worry. And planning a large outdoor party, even with tents, would make me a basket case worrying about the weather. And all I can say is THANK GOODNESS we kept it small because it was raining and 48 degrees on the day of her party! 

I love a good theme, and Lucy's original party theme was cupcakes. However, as I was searching for invitations on Etsy, I found one that had cupcakes and giraffes on it. I feel like it was fate because Lucy LOVES giraffes. We joke that the giraffe is her spirit animal. So the party took on a dual theme of cupcakes and giraffes. Strange, I know, but thanks to Etsy anything is possible!

Here's the adorable invitation. There's a big space in the middle and the white part's coloring is a little off because I used the retouching tool to edit out our address . . . didn't think it needed to be out there on the world wide web for all to easily see!

This is the banner that I made for the front room. My mom and I traced out the cupcakes, but I had the little circles on the end made on Etsy by the person who made the invitations. There were goodie bags for all the kiddos, and they each had their initials on them. There were giraffe print cookies in the shape of a "1" for everyone to take home. 

Here's a close-up of the cookies. My SIL Carla made them. They looked adorable and tasted delicious. I should know, I think I ate three of them!

The view of the dining room from the kitchen. 

The view of the dining room from the front windows. 

This is a terrible picture because it's so backlit, but across the windows in our family room I hung a long banner with pictures of Lucy from newborn-12 months. 

Here's a close up of one of the months. I hung the decorations about 4 days before the actual party. I can't tell you how many times Matty and I walked along that banner looking at all the pictures!

Our friend Erica visited a few weeks ago, and I put her to work decorating this chalkboard for Lucy's birthday. She based the drawing off of the onesie that I had made for Lucy to wear. I can plan out exactly what I want to do for parties, but I'm not always capable of implementing everything on my own . . . that's why I'm so thankful to have such talented friends and family!

The birthday girl's high chair! This must have been taken before we tied the giant cupcake balloon to the back of her chair. 

The dessert table! A giraffe cake for Lucy to play with, carrot cake cupcakes and brownies for everyone else. 

I wanted to have some sort of birthday tradition for Lucy, so I decided to have a plate made for her based on the theme of her birthday each year. When I was little I loved eating off of special plates, so I wanted to do that for Lucy as well. I had the cupcake plate made on Etsy back when I thought the theme was going to be just cupcakes. I was a liiiiiittle annoyed that the plate didn't match the official theme and almost reordered something with a giraffe on it as well, but Matty talked me down. 

My mom happened upon the giraffe plates and napkins in the clearance section at Meijer for $0.39 a pack! With the money we saved on paper goods, I could have ordered another plate. #justkidding #maybe

I was super pleased with the cake and had a lot of fun making it for Lucy. I couldn't find a design online to match what I had in my head, so I ended up making my own. Sometimes I really surprise myself!

Showing both grandmas all of her decorations before the party!

My mom wrapped Lucy's gift to match the invitations. #igetitfrommymama

Eating pizza with Oma and Papa!

During lunch Lucy bit into a piece of pepperoni that had accidentally been left on her pizza and she absolutely freaked out! She calmed down in her room afterward by playing with Marie and Genevieve. This picture of her rubbing her eyes should have been a sign that things were about to go terribly wrong with the cake. Sweet baby girl was tired!

Grabbed a quick pic before the waterworks started. Look how BIG she looks in that high chair!

She's not loving the fact that 20 people are standing around staring at her!

Checking it out for a quick second. Wait for it . . .

 . . . yep, there it is! Poor Lucy cried and cried . . . . and then cried some more. 

She had gotten some frosting on her fingers and was not amused when I licked it off. 

And as if things weren't bad enough, I had to wipe off her hands before taking her out, and that's enough to set her off even on a good day!

Look at that poor sad face!

After playing in her room (away from all the people) for a bit and getting dressed, we sat Lucy in her new chair from Grandma Rita and she had a good time opening up her gifts!

This one's a little blurry, but I love how she's checking out her new toy . . . and look at those cheeks!

Clapping for presents!

We love that sweet baby!

Trying out her new slide from Oma and Papa. 

Genevieve enjoyed the slide too . . .

 . . . and so did Marie!

After the party, Matty commented that it was too bad no one got Lucy any big gifts for her birthday ;)

After a good long nap, it was time to play in her new tunnel!

I was trying to relax a bit on the couch while talking to my mom on the phone, but someone wanted some cuddles!

And kisses!

Sunday was Lucy's actual birthday. We had saved the giraffe cake and tried again after lunch. As you can see, she had a ball! There was laughter and squealing, and lots of mess. What can I say, the girl does not like an audience! Matty took a TON of pictures while she was eating, and this is my absolute favorite!

A close up before we took the cake away. 

After Lucy got cleaned up, I asked Matty to play with her while I cleaned up the floor and her high chair. What's the best thing to do after eating a lot of cake? Have a tea party, of course! This melted my heart. Flash forward a few more years and I'm sure Lucy will insist daddy wears a fancy hat and a feather boa to tea!

After tea we took Lucy to the library where she got to play in the children's section and see the baby duckies outside in the courtyard. What a fun weekend we had! I cannot believe how quickly the first year went by. It's been the craziest, cutest, most tiring, best year ever! The changes in Lucy from the day we brought her home from the hospital until now are astounding. She's becoming this adorable little person, and I can't wait to see how much she grows and learns during her second year. 

Thank you to everyone who came out to celebrate and make Lucy's day so special. Her tears were ones of joy, I'm sure of it!



  1. I love every picture!! Can't wait to celebrate with her in person :)

  2. Happy Birthday, Lucy! Great pictures; I especially love the one in the tunnel :)