A First Birthday Party {Julia Turns One}

Well, the day has come and gone, and now I’m officially the mother of a one year old. I must say that as much as I want her to stay little forever, I’m absolutely adoring this age. My heart is so full with love and excitement when she’s around; she’s beyond delightful. Her joyful spirit is contagious and delicious, if that’s even a possible way of describing her. She’s soaking up so much of her world, making it blatantly obvious that she’s loving this age, too. I could go on and on about her, but I’ll save that for her monthly post.

Over the weekend we had a little shin dig to celebrate her birthday. Thanks to Pinterest, I went a wee-bit overboard. Blame the blogger in me since it’s not like she even had the slightest clue as to what was going on. I had so many ideas that I didn’t know what direction I wanted to go with, so I pulled a few of my favorites and got in touch with Cece from Dill Pickle Picnic to see if she could help me turn them into a reality.

I literally squealed when I opened up the package with all the goodies. She hit the nail on the head. My favorite piece from her was the big banner that says, “YAY JULIA” on it. Julia always puts her hands over her head whenever we say, “Yay Julia,” so it seemed like a perfect way to celebrate her birthday. Plus, I can use it for more parties in the future. Cece also made adorable “1” cupcake toppers, a mini smash cake bunting (she actually made two, because I was too indecisive to pick which one I wanted at the time of placing my order), flags for the straws (perfect for people to write their names on so they wouldn’t lose their drinks), and labels. Seriously, if y’all need some party supplies, check out Dill Pickle Picnic (and on Facebook) and talk to Cece (if it’s not in her shop already, she can probably make it for you!).

The other decorations were easy dollar store crafts. I set out to make this tablecloth backdrop, but gave up after braiding it seemed next to impossible, so we just left the tablecloths as is, with streamers hanging from it. The tissue paper tassels that hung on her high chair was ridiculously easy to make; I worked on it during nap time over the course of a couple weeks. I bought the pink and white straws from Target’s one spot over Valentine’s Day, scored the plates and napkins on clearance at Target (then on super sale with cartwheel), and made the cupcake/cake stand for under $10 (from Hobby Lobby and the dollar store).

When I first started thinking about her party I thought it’d be fun to serve brunch. My husband and I are big fans of brunch, especially on the weekends, so I ran with that idea and decided to have all sorts of mini, finger-food brunch items to munch on. We kept it pretty simple and delicious with a mix of foods that we could easily heat and put out without a lot of prep and a few that took a little more time to put together. A huge thank you to my husband and mom for doing most of the cooking and prepping. It was all tasty and I’ve been enjoying eating leftovers!

On the menu: 
French Toast Dippers (on Italian potato bread with lots of extra vanilla and cinnamon)
Mini Pancake Muffins (regular pancake batter poured into mini muffin tins)
Tater Tots
Biscuits (our go-to biscuit recipe)
Gravy (from a packet—don’t judge, it’s delicious!)
Chicken Strip Bites
Fruit Kabobs
Raspberry Mimosas (orange juice + raspberry chambord + champagne)

I was a little worried about her party being right smack dab in the middle of nap time (yeah, I get a gold star for planning a party during a nap), but I just got her up earlier that day, which helped rearrange her naps later on. She was doing fantastic right up until it was time for her to enjoy the best part of a party: the cake.

We got her in the high chair and brought her cake over. She took one look at it in front of her and made the saddest face ever. Talk about a slap in mama’s face! My husband, eager for her to get messy, pushed her cute little
buttons even further by pressing her hands into the cake. More
cries—louder this time—followed. She wasn’t having any of it.

Maybe she didn’t like hot pink sprinkles or maybe she didn’t like that I spent extra time making the layers shades of pretty pink ombre? Either way, she was not a fan of the cake.

I’m not sure if everything just caught up with her and she got scared of people watching her, or if she legitimately didn’t like the cake (first time having anything that sweet, and all), but she didn’t want to touch it with a ten foot pole. I finally managed to get her to eat a little bit of the cake (sans frosting). Watching her with it was like watching her with Santa all over again!

We ended up leaving her in her seat with the cake for a little while and after about five or 10 minutes, she finally started warming up to her dessert.

We caught her sneaking in bites by the handful. It got to the point where it was all over her face, her hands, her onesie, and her skirt. We finally called it a day, dusted her off over the trash can, and stripped her down to her birthday suit.

And that is the tale of how my daughter spent her first birthday. She’s blessed my life in more ways than I can count, and I’m eager to see the woman she becomes.

Happy birthday, Miss Julia Grace!

*Linking up with Mama & Mou


  1. You're husband is nice, mine picked up our kid's cupcake and smashed it on their cheeks. He was like "smash cake means I smash their face right?!" Men!

    The decorations are lovely too, I'd like them for my own birthday!

  2. SO adorbale! What a beautiful first birthday. Love her face when she's eying the cake!! And I like your husband's NPR shirt 🙂

  3. OH my gosh! This is so cute!!! So hilarious about the cake too, that will be a good story to tell when she's older!! (found you through the linkup!)

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