Has it really been a year already? *cries*
I distinctly remember sitting on this exact same chair feeling all the jiggles and wiggles of Maxen inside my tummy. Time really goes by so fast. I mean, LOOK AT HIM NOW!
Let me start by sharing some of my favorite photos from his birthday celebration. First things first- a family photo!
Notice his cute Cat In The Hat onesie? Hehe I actually ordered it on Amazon! I wanted him to be comfortable in just a cotton onesie rather than in a costume he would get itchy and annoyed with.
You have to remember, this is your child’s first birthday…not yours! Haha.
You might ask, how do you even begin to choose a theme for a first birthday? What is step one? Who to call? The cake, the decors, the prizes, the activities…It can get overwhelming especially if this is the first time you’re planning anything like it!
So, I decided to write this story to help out first time mommies with their planning. So here’s hoping you find this useful.
Let’s start with the theme..I picked Dr. Seuss because I thought it was something not too common and above it all, he loves his books and reading time. This is something he could relate to and actually find familiarity when we brought it to life. So if your baby doesn’t have a favorite character yet, you can always go with something generic. In our case, we picked one of his favorite books!
I decided to separate the adult area from the kiddie area so they could have all the space to run around, play and just have fun! The kids were in heaven! All I was thinking of was their enjoyment, while the adults didn’t have to stress about their kids bumping into the tables and chairs! This concept really worked well for us.
Now you may be wondering, who did all this? Definitely not me! Haha! I owe this all to Portia of @GPTheStoryteller (You can find her on Instagram). She may sound familiar because it’s actually the fourth time we’ve worked together.
If you recall, she did Maxen’s Nautical baby shower, then Maxen’s Tropical themed baptism and Tyler’s 8th Growtopia party we had at home! In so many occasions, & in different settings whether it be at our home, in the country club, or even a hotel- her service and results were always consistent. In fact, she constantly outdoes herself. What’s important here is the trust that we already have towards each other. She is always so transparent and really has the clients best interest at heart. Her team is equally amazing.
Since I didn’t hire any host or magician, I decided to go all out with the activities to keep them busy. But most importantly, I wanted Maxen to have the best time…something he could actually participate in and understand.
This is where Rose of @adaswonderlandpartyneeds (on Instagram) came in! Inflatables and bouncy houses were an instant hit. We setup two of them, so the bigger kids had an option when the little ones came in to play. I would definitely recommend this for every birthday party. The kids never wanted to leave!
Another great activity for those that didn’t want to jump around were the playhouses and the “baby” rollercoaster from @KidsPartyHouse! In fact I want to order one for my own house!!! Maxen didn’t want to get down. My brother and I had to hold him FOR A LONG TIME. Such a cute idea! All the kids took turns on this one as well…including my other two! (I know right?! Even the big ones.)
As a kid, I remember having my own playhouse and having friends over for tea parties and playing “house-house”! Who can relate? Haha! I’m sure we all had good memories of that- and so I wanted to incorporate that aspect as well. You can choose which stores or themes you want…they have tons to choose from! This is also something I highly recommend.
Because we had about 30-40 kids over, I had to make sure everyone had something to do! And that’s where @theparty_project came in! Lego tables and cupcake making to keep their hands preoccupied! It really is such a brilliant idea for any occasion, even for a wedding I would say. It doesn’t take up a lot of space and it keeps them entertained.
And as I mentioned earlier, cupcake decorating! You can get a package deal with Party Project, like we did.
And you’d think I’d be done with all the activities, but nope there’s more! I had Crayola come in with some educational wooden toys (some of Maxen’s favorites) all from @ogalalaworld – you might actually be familiar with the store in Shangrila Plaza!
Yes, they actually cater to parties now where you can prepare different arts and crafts depending on the kids age.
As you can see, all the activities were something Maxen could enjoy! And really, that was all that mattered to me. The birthday celebrant should ALWAYS have the best time! And I think sometimes we parents forget.
More often that not, it really is the simplest activities that make the kids happy. We don’t need to stress about entertaining the adults, actually.
But you know what was so nice to hear? Even the adults were pleased with all the activities available. None of the children even bothered with the adult area! Haha…I mean how rare is that?! All you really need to do is keep them busy!
Speaking of keeping everyone busy….
I had game booths that Portia of GPTheStoryteller also prepared.
So that aside from all the activities, I wanted to make sure that everyone got to take home prizes too! Kids, adults, babies…I mean even they took over! Hahaha!
What’s a party without food carts!?!
Maxen loves pancakes and waffles, which is why we wanted to try out the latest one in the market called @pufflesph (You can also find them on Instagram) ..The waffle alone was yummy, but when you add in the ice cream and toppings even better!!!
Woops. Caught in the act!
We also spoiled our guests with delicious banana cakes in a jar by @bottledupph.
Aside from it being so good, it added up as beautiful table toppers they could grab and munch on at all times!
What’s a party without friends? He got his baby squad rollin’… Zeik & Harper join in!
And one of my favorites in every party, putting the loot bags together! I really take the time to make sure everyone goes home with something not only fun but useful too! So we had these personalized totes made by @arteegram_manila …
They make perfect kiddie beach bags too!
Then I filled them up with some snacks from the grocery, and goodies from @ogalalaworld like washable Crayola markers and crayons, essentials like Pigeon baby wipes and these personalized Dr. Seuss notebooks and pens we ordered from @prints_r_us!
For the guest board, I wanted something extra special- so we had his feet and hands casted by @castedtreasure ~ it’s a special piece we could display in his nursery.
Super cute right???
And of course, how could I forget the cake? It was a first with @sugarcraftMNL. This wasn’t just any ordinary cake… it was a dark chocolate salted caramel cake!!! Holy moly! It tasted better than it looked! NOT KIDDING. I never expected it to be so good! Oh gosh.
Well I’ll leave it at that.. if you’d like to see a few video snippets of what went on- type in #MikaelaInOneMinute & #MaxenTurnsOne on Instagram and find it on Youtube as well!
Happy happy birthday to the light of our lives- Maxen Lucas! We love you very much! The happiness you bring….priceless.
If you have any questions, feel free to comment below or leave a message on Instagram @mikaelamartinez.
‘Till next time!
Photography: The Picture Company