Last month Edie turned one. Of course we had to throw a party to celebrate!
I've had plans to make a mobile of paper hearts to hang over Edie's crib for awhile now, and since her birthday is so close to Valentine's Day I just decided to work those hearts into the decor. I chose patterned papers in aqua, yellow, and pink because those are the colors I wanted for her mobile, and they felt girly without being too valentine-y. I bought some scrapbook paper and a stack of cardstock cards at Michael's to make the paper hearts.
For the invitations, I found a chalkboard background online and added the white text in Photoshop using a font called Rudiment. I printed them on the cardstock cards I had bought for making hearts (similar to these but different colors). The cards were 7x10 inches with a fold down the middle, so I was able to print two 5x7 invitations per page. It worked great and as an added bonus, each invitation had a pretty pattern on the back instead of just plain white. Once the cards were printed, I attached the hearts with a piece of double-sided tape and then stitched them in place with a needle and thread. (It helps to poke the holes where you want them to be before trying to sew through the paper!)
I also stitched a heart to the back of each envelope before I mailed them off. Sometimes I get carried away with my needle and thread...
I'm happy to say that I actually completed Edie's monthly photo project for the first year! I fell behind on her written monthly updates, but I did keep track of what she was doing each month so I can still add those to her baby book. Of course I had to print out all the pictures and hang them on the wall! I still can't get over how much older she looks in that final picture... (You can get a closer look at all the photos right here.)
Our only other party decorations were the big paper hearts I cut from the same paper I used for the invitations, which my niece hung all over the house. Some of them are still up!
I took the final picture of her monthly photo project on her actual birthday, but I had to get a few pictures of Edie in her party dress on the day of the party. I love that smile!
It seems like I always make a pinata for Abe's birthday, but since we'll probably be spending most of Edie's birthdays indoors, I wanted to start some kind of tradition that wouldn't leave my living room whacked to pieces. Since it will probably always be cold on her birthday, a cocoa bar seemed like a good option. We set it up in the living room in front of our chalkboard wall with her monthly photos.
Instead of stocking up on mugs or using disposable cups for our cocoa bar, I just made sleeves out of gray felt for my collection of 8 oz. canning jars. I stitched a paper heart to each one, and ended up with a cute set of glasses that can handle hot or cold drinks!
To flavor the cocoa, I set out a variety of mix-ins - candy canes, vanilla hearts (made from candy melts leftover from Abe's dinosaur dig cake), cinnamon sticks, caramel bits (I found them in the baking aisle next to the square caramels - these ones melted easier and didn't need to be unwrapped!), chocolate sprinkles, homemade marshmallows, whipped cream, and turbino sugar and cream for the people drinking coffee. I also put out some cute heart-covered straws from Target to use as stir sticks.
I love homemade marshmallows in cocoa, but my favorite combination was caramel and cinnamon with whipped cream and sprinkles!
And yes, the cocoa bar was a huge hit!
For brunch we served baked french toast, mini fritattas, bacon hearts, and fresh fruit. Noah picked up the flowers for Valentine's Day. ♥
We just set the food out on the table, but I still made a little menu card for each dish.
The only dish that got the full Valentine's Day treatment was the bacon. It wasn't too hard to make the heart shaped bacon, and I was able to fit a lot more on a pan that way, so that felt like a win-win. Also, heart-shaped bacon. Who doesn't love that?
Noah and Abe went to the party store that morning and bought a couple balloons for Edie. She is obsessed with balloons so she wanted to hold them all day. Eventually we had to put both of the ribbons in one hand so she could use her other hand to eat lunch!
In addition to our cocoa/coffee bar, I also set up a Bloody Mary bar - because what is brunch without a Bloody Mary? We didn't make very many Bloody Marys, but most of the olives, meat sticks, and cheese cubes disappeared as the kids kept walking past my set up on their way to play in the basement...
Abe was in charge of deciding when it was time to open presents...and helping open them!
While printing up the photos for Edie's monthly photo project, I kept coming across other favorite photos that I'd taken of her and Abe throughout the year. I loved the photo collage I put on our magnetic wall for Abe's second birthday, so I figured I'd just update the wall with photos of Edie.
I stuck paper hearts on all my magnets and printed my favorite photos as 4x6s (or 4x4s if they were from Instagram) which I'll eventually put in an album or her baby book. I also hung some mini Instagram magnets that I made a while back, and a postcard from 1canoe2 that seemed appropriate for my girl that loves to climb. It's so much fun and a bit bittersweet to look back on the last 12 months this way...
Wasn't this taken like yesterday?!
As usual, the cake was just boxed cake mix and store-bought vanilla frosting topped off with some paper hearts. I don't know why I always frost chocolate cakes with white frosting. Someday I'll learn...
Edie loves blueberries, so I made a blueberry curd for the filling of her cake. It was so good! My mom wants the recipe so I'll have to post it soon.
We used our regular dishes for brunch but I never seem to have enough small plates for cake, so I picked up these polka dotted ones and the napkins from Target. The colors make me think of summer and as it turned out we had a beautifully sunny day for the party. It was cold and snowy outside, but it felt warm and festive inside!