Lets be honest, your baby’s first birthday is really for you, the parents, for making it through the tough newborn months. Its a bitter sweet milestone for most parents. You wonder what happened to that tiny newborn you were too afraid to hold. Its really a celebration of their graduation from baby years into the toddler years. First birthdays are so special in so many ways. Years later, I know our little one will also be cherishing these pictures even though she wont remember any of the experience.
Any kind of event planning can get stressful no matter how big or small it is, this is why i wanted to share and write down a detailed plan which can help alleviate some of the stress and chaos that comes with birthday planning.
- Before you actually start planning, have a visual idea of what kind of event you would like to have. I had that general idea in mind at least few months before the actual event, but you don’t have to get to the nitty gritty of planning until about 1 month before the event. Pick out a theme first, this will get you inspired to get all the rest of planning done. Our theme was “Winter ONEderland” (since it was in December), we turned it into a silver, white, pink/peach color theme and it worked well just like I had imagined, will include some pics from the event below.
- Have a guest list ready and choose the form of invitation you want to sent. Create a google excel sheet or any place you can keep all the event details together. I love using my Evernote app for this. When I come across an idea I like or think of something I want to include for the event, I write it right away in my Evernote app before I forget. For invitations, you can use Evite or create a personalized invitation with your babys pic (from shutterfly or any stores that print photos). For first birthday we personally wanted to keep it to only our close circle of friends and family (about 20-25 people), to keep our little one as comfortable as possible. Also have your baby’s nap time in mind wile deciding on the time.
- Venue – Decide on a venue as soon as you get your guest list and have a rough estimate of who will be attending. For first birthday, we felt its best to hold it at a place baby is most comfortable, so we had it at our home 🙂
- Cake : preorder your cake 1-2 weeks before and have a plan for who will be picking it up on event day. Don’t forget to incorporate your theme into your cake too, cake should complement the decor you have. If you are planning on having a smash cake, get that ordered too. Me personally wanted to make my own smash cake, I ended up not being able to make it but I will be making one for her second birthday..stay tuned
- Food – try to have the menu listed out atleast 3 weeks before the event. Try to incorporate appetizers and desserts you can make ahead of time, I tried making a lot of my appetizers the day of the event and you can imagine how stressful that can get, even though its a small event, after you cook, you have to make the place guest ready too.
- Decorations – Try to get your creative energy to flow few weeks before the event and don’t stress the day of. For me I knew i wanted to have twinkling lights for our backdrop and fresh flowers throughout the house to go with the theme. We also had a balloon garland, but that was my dads idea, which turned out looking great. I ordered the first birthday kit and twinkling lights from amazon. All the other party decors were from party city.
- Dress – You can order a first birthday customized dress from amazon, which we did too, but ended up not the right size for our little girl. Good thing we ordered early, so I had time to check out local stores and we ended up buying a cute dress that went perfectly with the theme colors from “buy buy baby”
- Photos – make arrangements to document the event. Arrange a professional photographer or someone who got the skills. You are going to be busy the day of event, so delegate this task to someone else for sure to take lots of pics and videos for memories.
- Party favors– I always like DIYs and I knew for sure I wanted to make something to give our guests as party favors. I bought these small mason jars from Michaels and some cute ribbons and cardstock paper to decorate the jars and I got the recipe to make homemade chex mix from Emily Noel on Youtube. I had also considered making small cake loafs since it was holiday season too, but I ended up not having enough time. Make it personable and memorable for your guests.
- Event day checklist – On the day of event, you will have so much running through your head, so its a good idea to write it all down. I made an event checklist for the day with time, that way it made sure everything that needed to be picked up was picked up on time and we were on schedule.
Our first birthday celebration turned out a very memorable event for all of us, I will be sharing how we save these birthday memories for our little one soon…stay tuned…
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