I cannot explain how much I LOVED this party for my baby girl! The design and decorating was spot on (by moi, of course 😘), but I have also been working hard on crafting the perfect flow for a birthday party with adult and children guests. It is actually a very difficult thing to master! I admire the hosts and hostesses who effortlessly glide through their beautiful parties providing bountiful bites, belly laughs, and an atmosphere of warmth for adults AND children. They are truly party professionals and my inspiration. I think this party was pretty close! First and foremost, I have learned that I cannot do it myself. Andy and I are a pretty good team. He has really nailed down the art of offering and refilling drinks, which is his main responsibility during our parties. I am also so fortunate to have an amazing sister, brother-in-law, mom, and dad who are always willing to help out in every way possible (food prep, kid games, child wrangling, food refill, clean up, you name it). I could not have fantastic parties without them!
Besides the extra help for this party, I also did a couple of new things. Number 1, I invited our lovely photographer to capture the event. As always, she was amazing and caught every magical moment. Plus, her photography is absolutley breathtaking! She was even willing to climb onto the table to get just the right angle for “Happy Birthday”! Having her work her magic also allowed me to put my phone/camera away and focus on everything else.
Number 2, I also had a lot of items delivered the morning of the party. In the past, I would have sent Andy out to gather and haul, but this time we used that extra time to go over last minute details, to relax, and to enjoy the moment. This is key. Enjoy the moment, RELAX, and let go of all the little imperfections. In the past, I had a tendency to focus on details that were not to my exact liking… easily bringing me down. This is a hard behavior to overcome when you are a slight perfectionist with an interior design background. I have a heightened desire and focus to make my visions into reality. Obviously, that can’t always happen (but I do everything within my power to get close) and I am ok with that and actually love it now. C’est la vie!
The design was so so so exciting! I LOVED my concept for the party! It was an obvious choice because we were planning a trip to Europe for my sister’s wedding, which we left for a week after the party! A Bon Voyage Party it would be! Our trip was to start in London, move to Paris, then Sitges (the site of the wedding), and then Barcelona. What an incredible trip and union to celebrate alongside my baby’s first birthday!
Our trip-to-be inspired most of the party. I made passports for kids as they arrived, gearing them up for a “trip” to each destination. With their passports hanging around their necks on lanyards, the kids played three games. Each kid earned a destination stamp for each game they won. To get their Paris stamp, kids pinned Paris on a map blindfolded. To earn their London stamp, kids threw paper airplanes at London on a map. To get their Barcelona stamp, kids tossed beanbags into the Barcelona hole on the map. The kids really loved filling their passports, which had their name and a pic of themselves on it. Beyond the games, brunch inspired food, and our bon voyage decor… I also included a lot of “charm” inspired elements. Hearts, stars, and circles were scattered everywhere. I always say my third baby is my charm baby and I wanted to include that for her special day!
After the kids started getting stir crazy and wondering off from the games, we moved onto another fun party element, the piñata! Piñatas make every party exciting, right?! My mom always had piñatas at our parties growing up, so they are quite nostalgic and a must for me now. Plus, it is the perfect thrilling way to disperse favors to the kids. At my Bon Voyage Party, I had a gold star piñata with ribbons kids pulled to try to break it open. From the piñata, we naturally moved to the finale of the party, donut-cake time. Obviously, THIS was the moment every child had been waiting for (and let’s be honest, most adults)! The kids were all chanting “donut time”. It made me crack up! Especially because I am 100% positive it was my son who started the chant. After we sang “Happy Birthday” to the sweet birthday girl, we mingled and ate some more food before guests left. I absolutley loved every single second! It was so great to celebrate such an important day for my baby girl, Andy, and I with so many wonderful people… with lots of delicious food, belly laughs, and warmth!😉
A few pics by me…
COMPONENTS + CREDIT
- design – Erin Catlin
- pics – Jennifer Jackson Photography
- paperware + garland – Meri Meri
- balloons – Paris 312
- flowers – Pistil & Vine
- party invites – Minted