Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Avery's First Birthday BASH!

We hosted Avery's birthday party last Sunday in our backyard - it was a total success! The weather was beautiful, we were blessed to have some of our closest friends and family with us to celebrate, and our little caterpillar seemed to enjoy himself very much! (The cake smash was the highlight!) I've been planning this party for quite a few months in my head and it was so fun to see it come to life. It certainly took a village to pull together, there's no way we could've done it without our awesome family and friends to help us out. (Thanks, guys!!!) 
Here are some of the highlights of the party:
 The FOOD! What is a Very Hungry Caterpillar party without some fruits? (and veggies too, in our case!) We had all the fruits featured in the book, a few of the 'junk foods' the caterpillar ate on Saturday, and a few extras too. I cut out little flags with pictures of the fruit from the book and attached them to sticks to pull the theme together.  On the food table, I set up a copy of the book, a framed picture of Avery and a fun quote from Eric Carle about The Very Hungry Caterpillar along with one of Avery's fuzzy caterpillars :)

Thanks to my super talented sister, Janessa, who helped me bake up tons of cake pops late into the night on Saturday, we made up these cute edible caterpillar centerpieces for the tables. (I LOVE those little chocolate chip eyes!) We had lemonade to drink with flavored ice cubes- I cut up chunks of raspberries, strawberries and mint leaves and froze them with water in an ice cube tray for guests to make their own flavored lemonade creations!

I made all the paper garlands (that lined the tables and hung around the food table) and the pennant on Avery's high chair out of paste paper, cut them into circles and triangles and sewed them together with my machine. (The making of the paper and the sewing were relatively quick steps, the cutting was the most tedious but was a great activity for me while riding 8 hours to Tennessee and back a few weeks ago!)
The Favors! I found these cute Very Hungry Caterpillar paper baskets and crayons at Target months ago and snatched them up just for this purpose. I also included little coloring books that I made by cutting up this coloring sheet in Photoshop and printing it on cardstock. I also stuck a handmade pinwheel in each basket (I'm a sucker for pinwheels:) made out of the same paste paper I used on the garlands. Tutorial I used for pinwheel here. (I just used plastic straws instead of dowels)
 The photos! I printed all of Avery's weekly photos I took this year and hung them from a string on the wall next to the food table with wooden clothes pins. It was SO FUN (and a little bittersweet) to see all of the pictures together and to see how Avery has grown and changed.
It was a fun project to do, and even more fun to see it now completed!

The Fun! I'm a little disappointed to say that I really slacked the rest of the day taking photos. It went by so fast that I didn't get any shots of the backyard as a whole or of many of our family and friends that were there... Thank goodness my sister got a few shots of some of the fun things that were going on. Our awesome friends let us borrow their jumping castle, complete with a slide and everything! Avery loved it! (so did everyone else :)

Avery's sand/water table (sand-only today!) was a gift from his Grandpa & Grandma Wachsmuth and was a huge hit at the party! This was Avery's first experience with sand and although most of it found its way out of the box, thankfully none ended up in his mouth!

This was the surprise favorite at the party - the 'Water Blob' made out of a sheet of thick plastic, a roll of Gorilla Tape, and water! (tutorial here) A big thanks to my brother, Josh, for taking on this project the morning of the party! What fun it was!!

It was such an amazing day - we are so blessed to have so many awesome people in our life that love and care for our little Avery so much :)
Our sweet baby boy, the One-Year-Old!

Oh, I almost forgot! I've been working on a little sewing project for the past few weeks too! We got Avery a circus tent for his birthday (from Ikea) and to go with the theme, I made some pouf cushions and a cloth ball for Avery to make the inside of the tent more comfy :) I used this tutorial for the poufs and this tutorial for the ball. The poufs were SO FUN to make, I may make more of them in the future! The first one took me a while to figure out, but I finished the second one in TWO naptimes! (I time my projects in terms of how many naptimes they take me ... and TWO is really good!)
 The happy boy lovin' his new playspace!

 There is NOTHING cuter than finding him in here reading books... my heart may burst.

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