Why I’m planning a smaller first birthday party this year

With my first daughter’s first birthday, I became a bit obsessed with the whole planning part. Maybe “obsessed” is not even the word for what I became in the month leading up to her party. I think I was neurotic and addicted to the idea that I had to plan this fabulous birthday party in order to commemorate the immensity of her turning one.

One of the "creations" I made for my first daughter's "Very Hungry Caterpillar" themed party

I lived in Hobby Lobby, knowing all of the cashiers on a first-name basis, because I wanted to implement all these cool DIY projects that I saw online. I also planned to bake her cake, which at least a week before the party, was going to be a tiered, fondue, zoo montage. Did I mention that I don’t really bake? I mean I do bake, but often don’t on a regular basis because I like to eat baked goods more than anyone else in my house.

In the end, or two days before her party, however, after surviving from birthday planning burn out, I ditched all my ideas and decided to do a more classic and simpler “Very Hungry Caterpillar” theme.

This year, with my second daughter’s first birthday party, I want to keep things simple. I haven’t been looking at Pinterest or other mom’s blogs because I don’t want to get sucked into the idea that I have to over-plan a party that my daughter won’t even know she’s attending.

So, as part of my simple theme, here are my ideas.

-Cake: Vanilla cake (homemade, because I have the time)

-Setting: Home

-Invitees: Only close family

-Gifts: No gifts, unless some one feels so inclined. We have enough toys around here, so I really don’t want anymore.

-Food: Yes, we will have food. But, it will be homemade. Probably a one pot meal like spaghetti, or maybe even pizza and salad or some other veggies.

That’s it. I don’t want this process to be stressful so I’ve chosen not to call this a party. It’s more so a celebration of her being one and that we survived having two children just one year apart.

What do you think? What did you do for your child’s first birthday party?

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Jessica lives in the Washington, DC metropolitan area with her husband and two girls. Once upon a time, pre-motherhood, she did many things as a “serious-looking” woman who managed to successfully balance a reality TV addiction with a career and academic pursuits. She's now a serious-acting woman whose primary job is raising her children. She writes, reads, fantasizes about minivans, and takes midday naps. She enjoys (among many other things) dancing to 80s music, photography, laughing out loud (at, usually, inappropriate moments), and writing about writing, being a writer, and becoming fearless on her blog Jessica F. Hinton

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