Hosting a first birthday party is a lot of work. In fact, it’s downright exhausting. I did not stop for two days straight. But, all of my efforts paid off on Saturday. It truly was a great party.
Riley had a perfect morning, schedule-wise. He went to bed a little earlier than usual the night before, so he woke up earlier than usual the next morning, which was exactly what I wanted. That meant he went down earlier for his nap, still slept for a little over an hour, and was up and dressed before the party started.
His napping for over an hour also meant I, along with the rest of the party preparation people, could get last minute tasks completed before everyone started arriving. I was able to get a LOT done the day before, but there was still a decent amount on my to-do list the day of. However, everything was crossed off and under control before the official start time rolled around.
We served brown sugar and balsamic pork, sundried tomato pasta salad, broccoli salad, fruit, spinach dip, and dirty dip, as well as hotdogs, goldfish, and M&Ms for the kids. I had a subtle theme of colors and shapes, which was mostly reflected in the decorations. Bright balloons, colored foam shapes and pom pom balls, a hand-drawn birthday banner, special accoutrements for the birthday boy, and a handmade photo banner adorned my parents’ house for the occasion.
We had about 40 people in attendance, including a dozen kids. The house quickly became crowded, noisy, and festive, and Kenny and I loved every minute of it. Riley did really well with all of the stimulation, being passed from person to person, crawling all over the place, walking a bit, and playing on the floor with his friends.
Cake time finally rolled around about an hour and a half into the party. Kenny and I worked so hard on baking, constructing, and icing our confectionary creation that we didn’t really want to cut into it, but we knew we had to. So, after singing “Happy Birthday” and subsequently removing Riley’s special birthday hat on account of many tears, Kenny removed the top part of the cake to give to the birthday boy.
I wasn’t sure how Riley would react to having a mini three-tier cake plopped in front of him, but, as you saw on Monday, he dug right in. He started off a little slow, but once he got past the blue triangle on top, he got the hang of it. He was a complete and utter mess by the time we finally declared him finished, so an impromptu sink-washing was definitely required.
When it was all said and done, we had exactly half of the main cake left. It’s a good thing it was tasty because we’ll be eating it for weeks!
All in all, the party was a rousing success. Riley seemed to enjoy all of the attention, and I think everyone had a fun time. Good food, good friends, good occasion. We couldn’t have asked for a better way to celebrate our Riley-bean being around for one whole year.
And I am certainly glad I have another whole year before hosting the next party. It took me the rest of the weekend to recover.
Happy Birthday, my sweet boy. I know you won’t remember your first birthday party at all, but I hope you look back at the pictures and videos one day and realize it was something special.