Wednesday, June 20, 2012

A Crabby Par-tay!

Some people go overboard for first birthday parties - pintrest anyone? In my last issue of Real Simple magazine, the editor stated that events can be cheap, fast, and great. Reasonably you can expect two of the three, but never all three. I would definitely agree with that. I started planning out a theme about a six weeks in advance and slowly started to do things. I found some crabby printables that I liked and took them to a copy shop to be printed. I found some letter banner printables, printed them out myself and then had them laminated at work. I borrowed mason jars from my mother-in-law. I purchased paper supplies from Nobbies and from (gasp!) Wal-Mart.
Out of respect for our budget and my sanity, I tried to be reasonable. I didn't make the cupcakes (Target). My mom made most of the salads. I had lots of help putting together the fruit kabobs. I didn't do party favors like I originally wanted to (hand decorated crabby sugar cookies, which then evolved to homemade caramel corn, which evolved at midnight the night before to nothing). I didn't put together the rest of Lucan's first year photo books. I didn't print off Lucan's monthly photoshoots. I didn't put together a video slide show. And guess what? The party still went on. In fact no one, besides me, even noticed these elements were missing. Lucan didn't care, which is the point of a first birthday party. I'm sure that people still probably think that I put too much time and effort into the party as it is, but I don't care.

Looking at these pictures, my napkins and decor, in hindsight, look a little patriotic.

Lance made barbecue pulled pork sandwiches. He was really concerned that we wouldn't have enough at 15 pounds of pork. True form to us, we have enough pork left over for six large sized containers. It's a good thing that it freezes well.

My favorite decoration was his birthday banner. I printed the letters from here.

At some point I had intended to get a balloon bouquet for Lucan's highchair. Oh well. We were 20 minutes late as it was to his party, who knows how much later we could have been if I had insisted on some of the things I had really wanted.

Cupcakes were from Target. Buttercream frosting. It wasn't my original desire to get my cupcakes from Target because I wanted "cool" designer bakery cupcakes, but I didn't want to drop half of my party budget on 3 bites of cake. So Target! They allowed me to pick the way I wanted them frosted (a cloud of buttercream with primary colored sprinkles on the sides) and then I assembled all of the toppers for the cupcakes in my "free" time. I got some help on these - my mom helped do some cutting and tracing along with my mother-in-law. Lance did ONE sheet and declared that he had helped enough ...

I'm not sure if tissue paper poms are too girly, but I loved them. I had them hang in my dining room for about a week prior to the party. I also hung crabs on curly whirlies from the poms. I made red, navy, turquoise, and white with polka dot poms in varying sizes.

Those straws. In pintrest pictures you see all of them looking symmetrical and lovely. Mine were less than lovely. In my mind this looked a lot different. But I purchased a gazillion paper straws off of ebay. My future parties will also include classic red striped straws :)

Fruit kabobs. Note to self: buy pineapple in advance so it can ripen on the counter. If you try to purchase it the day before at Costco, you will be sorely disappointed and tempted to but $9 precut pineapple from the grocery store. Then you will stop yourself because $9 on one container of pineapple is an outrage to mankind.

Haha. I looked and looked and asked around for a fishbowl. Again, being unwilling to buy a fishbowl that I would use once I looked for another option. The crab is one of my printables sitting in the hurricane sand glass decoration that lives in my bathroom at home. It came to me that morning when I was hurriedly brushing my teeth that no one would know ... except me, Lance, my mom and my mother-in-law. You should have seen the confused face on Lance when I packed it up to go over to the party room.

The following pictures were all taken by Lance's aunt Cathy. My friend Erika had suggested I appoint someone to take pictures and while I didn't specifically ask Cathy to take pictures, I'm so happy and blessed that she did. My mom took some too, so it's nice to have an array. I suggest for all the rest of you party hostesses with the mostesses, ask someone to be your candid photographer. It really simplifies your hostess life.

Happy boy. As long as he was with his dad.

Lucan had crabby overalls on too. But you can't see them :(

My mom, my grandma, and myself finally catching a minute to eat.

Time to open gifts!

Lucan and his cool shades. I don't know how other moms do it, but I can't convince Lucan that his sunglasses have a purpose other than ripping them off of his face to play with them. If someone can give me pointers as to how to keep them on Lu's face, shoot them my way.

We started off with just our nephew Wyatt being interested in the presents. One kid=totally manageable.

3 kids ... well, I had a hard time keeping track of who gave what. Maybe next year we'll have to set some ground rules for our little "helpers."

Ahhh... the smash cake.

Lu was confused as to why we were holding his hands and why he couldn't touch the "shiny" (candle flame) thing.

These pictures may have you thinking that Lucan really enjoyed his cupcake and frosting. That would be farther from the truth. I had to smear some frosting on his face for him to try it. I would also try and put a little cake in his mouth and oh, did that tick him off!

Frosting covered Lucan is not a happy Lucan. In the end we gave up. He never really ate any of it.

It was only after we cleaned him up and fed him pears and peas, was he really happy again. Silly birthday boy.

Lance got stressed by the last minute hustle and bustle of the party. I did a little too. But I stopped to give Lance a hug and to remind him that this is a celebration of our beautiful baby boy and his first year with us. That's what first birthday parties are all about.

Happy birthday Lucan! I hope you enjoyed your crabby party!

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