A Sunshine Birthday Celebration – Annabelle’s 1st

Going through four months with a colicky baby, I sang… a lot. I sang hymns, I sang lullabies, I sang Christmas songs, and I sang made-up songs. In all of this singing, there was one melody that was consistent; it calmed both of us. You see, my husband and I also sang this song to each other occasionally (the first verse anyway). “You are my sunshine” became more than a song, but a love story of our family.

When thinking of birthday party themes for our daughter’s first birthday party, “sunshine” just seemed to fit perfectly. Not only did that sweet cadence accompany our bonding time together over the last 12 months, but it was also a good symbol for her personality. By a year, she was a vivacious and bright little girl!

Since I figured I had many years ahead of me for parties of bright colors, I wanted this color scheme to be a little muted. I was going for sweet, just like my time had been over the last year as Annabelle’s mommy. I worked with a friend from high school who also happens to be an amazing designer to come up with a color scheme and invitation. Kelly with Pink Champagne Paper Co. made the process so easy and enjoyable, and the outcome was just gorgeous.

Sunshine Birthday Party - Invitation by Pink Champagne Paper Co.

Sunshine Birthday Party Invitations designed by Pink Champagne Paper Co.

With tones of muted yellow and watermelon pink, I was on my way to planning the details. It seemed just silly to have a “sunshine” themed birthday party indoors, so I planned for an outdoor party, and since the theme was a little girly, I elected for a semi-fancy brunch. Brunch in the yard. Check.

With that in mind, I started putting together the layout in my mind. With a 4-acre backyard, small and dinky would get swallowed. I had to use substantial pieces. I worked closely with Chris with United Party Rentals in Carrollton to select the perfect elements, from tables and chairs to linens to food service items. With an estimated guest list of 30, I elected to do one large guest table by butting banquet tables together to make a really wide and long table. Using 8 eight-foot banquet tables, I made a table that was 5′ wide by 32′ long. Yes, huge. But so awesome! For chairs, I elected to go with a white wooden garden chair as it was dainty enough yet perfect for an outdoor party.

For table linens, I chose all white linens. For the guest table, I used a watermelon runner to add a pop of color and hide the seam where the tables butted together. I worked with a local florist in Saginaw, Studio B Flowers and Events, to come up with an affordable floral plan. Misty helped me come up with a look that fit the overall “feel” of my party in a way that was {low}budget-friendly and a little quiry (like me!). We came up with a plan to use mini cluster arrangements using various types of flowers mostly in whites and yellows, in various kinds of containers, scattered along the table runner. I absolutely LOVED it!

Sunshine Birthday Party - Huge Guest Table

Table/Chair/Linen/China Rentals by United Party Rental : Floral by Studio B Flowers and Events : Photo by FyreFly

Sunshine Birthday Party - One Large Table for Brunch

Table/Chair/Linen/China Rentals by United Party Rental : Floral by Studio B Flowers and Events : Photo by FyreFly

Sunshine Birthday Party - Outdoor Setting and Table

Table/Chair/Linen/China Rentals by United Party Rental : Floral by Studio B Flowers and Events : Photo by FyreFly

Sunshine Birthday Party - Table and Drink Station

Table/Chair/Linen/China Rentals by United Party Rental : Floral by Studio B Flowers and Events

Sunshine Birthday Party - Simple Cluster Arrangements

Floral by Studio B Flowers and Events : Photo by FyreFly

Sunshine Birthday Party - Simple Floral Arrangement

Floral by Studio B Flowers and Events

Sunshine Birthday Party - Tablescape

Linen/China Rentals by United Party Rental : Floral by Studio B Flowers and Events : Photo by FyreFly

Sunshine Birthday Party - Table Runner

Floral by Studio B Flowers and Events : Photo by FyreFly

Sunshine Birthday Party - Simple Cluster Floral Arrangements

Floral by Studio B Flowers and Events : Photo by FyreFly

 

Since brunch was the main event, I wanted to make the food tables a focal point. I volunteered my husband up for a handy-man project and my mom for a day of fabric shopping to come up with a pipe and drape backdrop for each of the three food tables. I would arrange the food tables in a semi-circle to define the party space within the 4-acre tract, and the backdrops would add a visual barrier. The center table was an 8′ table backed by a 9′ tall curtain, and the two flanking tables were 6′ tables with 8′ tall curtains. I found a delicate yellow rose pattern fabric for the curtains on clearance at a fabric warehouse in Dallas, and we hung these curtains from a frame made with wood bases and aluminum pipe (we used a modified version of this tutorial). I also made some no-sew bunting using a pink polka dot fabric (I just cute my triangles with Zig Zag fabric shears and glued it over a piece of twine. For the center food table, I added lettering to the bunting to read “Happy Birthday Sunshine” using a pale yellow fabric and Wonder Under. Though the wind beat up my backdrops and constantly blew my bunting, it actually turned out to be quite nice. There is something quite beautiful about wind blowing through fabric.

Sunshine Birthday Party - Drink Station

Table/Linen Rentals by United Party Rental : Photo by FyreFly

Sunshine Birthday Party - Food Table

Table/Linen Rentals by United Party Rental : Photo by FyreFly

 

For food, I planned items based on what could be eaten at room temperature. Since we were preparing all of the food ourselves, my kitchen would be maxed out if I was cooking everything. I chose a slow cooker recipe with hashbrowns, bacon, sausage, and eggs as the main warm dish as to not tie up my ovens. We served waffles with 5 different kinds of homemade syrups presented in cute little bottles adorned with custom labels designed by Pink Champagne Paper Co. in a chicken wire basket. I laid out mini-bagels and freshly baked biscuits with 5 different {mostly} homemade spreads, and I also displayed fresh fruit. I had two large chafing dishes from United Party Rentals for the dishes that needed to stay hot, and the rest was laid out on platters. To add visual variety to the table, I used some antique-looking wood crates to alternate the height of the platters.

Sunshine Birthday Party - Brunch Presentation

Table/Linen Rentals by United Party Rental : Photo by FyreFly

Sunshine Birthday Party - Homemade Syrups with Labels

Custom Syrup Labels Designed by Pink Champagne Paper Co. : Photo by FyreFly

The cakes were really important to me. One of the highlights of the party, in my mind, would be Annabelle digging into her cake. I knew it would be the center of photographs, and I wanted it to be as pretty as it was tasty. I found The Cake DivaFW on Facebook, and we immediately shared late night emails back and forth to plan the confections. Rossmery came up with the beautiful idea to do buttercream rosette cupcakes in both vanilla and chocolate, laid out like a dress (just to add up the girly factor), and that Annabelle’s 6″ smash cake would be matching rosettes. For the cupcakes, the cake board was so large, she had to build a custom box for transportation. I was so impressed at how much detail she put into the product, and as a stay-at-home mother of two girls, I loved supporting her growing business.

Sunshine Birthday Party - Rosette Cupcakes and Smash Cake

Cakes by CakeDivaFW : Photo by FyreFly

For the drinks, I was interested in adding color. I chose orange juice and raspberry lemonade served from crystal dispensers. I arranged small pilsner glasses with yellow striped paper straws on the drink table in a beautiful array. I also used labels designed by Pink Champagne Paper Co. on mini water bottles for a cute drink option as well. Additionally, I provided milk and chocolate milk in a shabby milk bottle set with chicken wire baskets.

Sunshine Birthday Party - Happy Birthday Water Bottle Labels

Custom Water Bottle Label by Pink Champagne Paper Co. : Photo by FyreFly

Sunshine Birthday Party - Yellow Paper Straws

Yellow Striped Paper Straws by Green Party Straws : Photo by FyreFly

Sunshine Birthday Party - Milk Bottles

Photo by FyreFly

 

Since the smash cake was going to be such a focal point, I wanted Annabelle to have a pretty awesome seat. I purchased an antique high chair off Craigslist, and with a few coats from the rattle can and some tiny yellow bunting, it became the perfect little throne for my princess. I topped it off with a party hat, designed by Pink Champagne Paper Co. and finished with tissue paper confetti trim.

Sunshine Birthday Party - Antique High Chair with Bunting

Custom Party Hat Design by Pink Champagne Paper Co. : Photo by FyreFly

Sunshine Birthday - Highchair and Birthday Hat

Custom Party Hat Design by Pink Champagne Paper Co. : Photo by FyreFly

We did decide to hire a professional photographer for the event, mostly because we put so much hard work into this beautiful party and I wanted beautiful photos to show for it. Plus, we were able to get great shots of our guests, and I wasn’t burdened with an extra job. We also squeezed in a few family shots, too, which is the first we have ever had since Annabelle was born. Robyn with FyreFly Photography was amazing, and her party-side manner was phenomenal. Pregnant with her first child, I was also happy to help a fellow first-time mom, as it wasn’t all that long ago I remember having my first bump.

All in all, the outdoor setting was really nice. I could host a fancy brunch, yet the atmosphere allowed for the kids to run around and play. I think everyone that came enjoyed a nice, relaxing meal outdoors. And one thing is for sure… Annabelle had a blast!

Sunshine Birthday Party - Fancy yet Kid Friendly Outdoor Setting

Sunshine Birthday Party - Birthday Girl at Head of Table

Sunshine Birthday Party - Guests at Table

Sunshine Birthday Party - Guests

Sunshine Birthday Party - Head of the Table

Sunshine Birthday Party - Orange Juice at Brunch

Sunshine Birthday Party - Self Service Buffet Setting

Sunshine Birthday Party - Smash Cake

Sunshine Birthday Party - Smash Cake Mess

Sunshine Birthday Party - Cake Face

Sunshine Birthday Party - Cake Mess

Sunshine Birthday Party - Cake Time

Sunshine Birthday Party - Dig In

Sunshine Birthday Party - First Cake

Sunshine Birthday Party - Funny Faces

Sunshine Birthday Party - Gifts

Sunshine Birthday Party - Boys Playing

Sunshine Birthday Party - Cupcakes

Sunshine Birthday Party - Emily Playing

Sunshine Birthday Party - Kids Playing

Sunshine Birthday Party - Emilia

Sunshine Birthday Party - M'kayla

Sunshine Birthday Party - Birthday Girl Outfit

Sunshine Birthday Party - Birthday Girl Barefoot

Sunshine Birthday Party - Barefoot in the Backyard

 

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Tasha Jackson

As wife to Jason, mommy to Annabelle, and loyal full-time employee to American Glass, Tasha wears many hats in her day-to-day life.A proclaimed nerd, Tasha enjoys techy things, creating recipes, crafting, and more.
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  • http://www.bellenza.com/wedding-ideas/ Bellenza

    Love that little pink chair ♥