My birthday was last month and while I love a big fun party, having a five and a half week old made things a little tricky. I knew I wanted to do something but waited until just a few weeks before to plan anything. We ended up with a small family gathering in our backyard. And though I say small, there was still fifteen of us. And knowing that we would be moving in a few months, I wanted one last celebration in our backyard.
This year did not allow for months of preparation as years past (like my country backyard party, sparkling 30th, or last year's 1920's garden party). Instead I wandered the aisles of Target just a few days before with baby in tow.
I went with paper products for the first time ever! While I love reusing all of our party supplies, going with something we could just throw away at the end of the night made getting our little one to bed a lot easier. Luckily Target is on point with their adorable Design Love Fest for Cheeky line of paper products.
My mom brought over a few succulents and I used containers around the house to put them in. They are not all perfectly sized or potted but they were cute enough for me!
It was the first time I felt like I really did anything creative and for myself since our son was born so I found prepping for the party so enjoyable and familiar. My parents came over to help out and the baby napped really great that day for us all. It was one of the first times were I felt like myself again without all the pressure I would normally put on myself to create something different and unique. It allowed me to be creative without being a perfectionist. It was a very freeing experience I hope to continue to learn from as I get used to this new life of being a mom but still wanting to express my passion for design and entertaining.
With having a child and moving across the country where we will not know anyone, I see this season of entertaining coming to an end (at least temporarily). We don't know what type of house we will live in, what our outdoor space will be like, and what it is like to live with four seasons. I imagine as we make friends and open up our home we will find a new rhythm for what entertaining looks like during this different stage of life.
Since I wanted minimal prep work, we went with ice cream sundaes for dessert instead of a cake. I bought mini brownie bites to serve as a place holder for a birthday candle. And in case you were wondering, no one EVER complains about a build your own ice cream sundae bar!
More Target paper goods found in their party section. These gold paper straws are life changing. Because of the gold foil they do not dissolve in your drink like normal paper straws. Game changer people.
For dinner we served P.F. Chang's knock off lettuce wraps (a recipe a friend of mine brought us over for dinner recently! Thanks Mandy!). I made the meat ahead of time and kept it warm in the slow cooker (which we love these Crock-Pot hook ups that connect together). My mom brought over rice and pre-made frozen orange chicken that she heated up before the party. It was one of the easiest meals we have served and yet everyone loved it!
Since it was my first birthday with our little one, we had to grab a few family photos. Such a silly baby! I think he was getting sleepy.
Without even realizing it, someone brought up that this was the last time our whole family might be together for awhile. We have a cousin heading off to college along with us and one other family member that is moving out of state. So we took a few group photos before a handful of us head off on to new adventures.
It was a lovely birthday spent with our family and one I will always remember with our baby boy. We hope to come back to our home here in a few years but it is bitter sweet to think that this was our last party in our first home together.