I can’t believe my baby boy is 1! In one way it feels like the year flew by and I can’t believe he’s 1 already, but then again it also feels like it went very slowly. Having the postpartum arthritis flare for 6 months did make that part go very slowly-I remember wishing those days away so I could get to the point where it passed (which thank god it did)-but I also used to feel so guilty on those days because I didn’t want to wish any part of Braxton’s 1st year away. Thankfully it passed fully when he was 8 months and I was well enough to start chasing after him by the time he started crawling!
Anyway, his 1st birthday was a very special milestone for us and we wanted to make it special and do as much as we could ourselves. It was very important for us to make all the food organic and dairy free (and mainly sugar free and gluten free too) as that is how we live our lives and we wanted his party to reflect that. We made everything ourselves except for the sandwiches. We were going to make a heap of different salady bits but people love a mini bagel at a tea-party so we kind of felt like we should keep everyone happy so we had those catered! Everything else is super healthy and homemade with love by Daniel and I.
I wanted to share with you guys all our homemade birthday party ideas as you’ve all been such a great support over the past year. Hope you like all the ideas…
So, we’re very much into gender neutral stuff for Brax, but we happen to have lots of blue dotted through our house anyway, so it made sense to have a blue theme and we decided to add some yellow to brighten it up. I got 3 paper tablecloths from Tesco which were blue and white polka dot and we covered the table with them. We also bought some paper pompoms from Etsy and hung them above the table
We decided it would be really special if we made some of our own decorations so we went to Hobbycraft and bought some plain white mache letters. We had some paints at home already so we just painted them in our theme colours and stuck them a bit higgledy-piggledy onto some card then decorated with blue and yellow ribbon. We had some random stickers in my craft drawers and I think we went a bit overboard but we just stuck some animal stickers on there for good measure! (In case anyone is wondering, the sideboard is from Graham & Green!)
Our other DIY crafts project was to make a timeline of Braxton’s 1st year. We did this by getting coloured card from Hobbycraft and ordering retro prints from Photobox (apart from the last one as we took that on the day of his birthday and only had time to do a quick-print at Boots). We got some number stickers and stuck on the number of months. We hung it up with some twining which we secured at the back with sellotape and bought little pegs (also from Hobbycraft) and used those to hold the pictures up. We painted on the title at the top with acrylic paint and used stencils for the patterns in the corners. (The frame above the sideboard is from a gorgeous little boutique interiors shop in Bushey. It didn’t have mirrors in it but we took it to a mirror shop and had the mirror put in.)
(Vintage sideboard from Old & New in Camden)
Organic salted popcorn and organic vegan chocolate buttons in glass jars make for a great healthy twist on the usual marshmallows and sugary sweets. The jars look really old-school and make it more special than just putting everything in bowls. We have had these jars for a while and got them from Country Life Interiors in Bushey, Hertfordshire.
How cute do these look! Mini milk bottles from BluePonyCo on Etsy with yellow and white paper straws. I filled them with organic grapefruit juice and organic elderflower cordial.
So what was on the menu?? Well of course I had to make my baby boy an epic death-by-chocolate birthday cake that was also super healthy and although the frosting had some sugar (organic, raw cane), the rest was sugar free and the whole thing was also dairy and gluten free. It was awesome! I also made my vegan, dairy, gluten and sugar free carrot cake cupcakes with a frosting using Natvia icing sugar which could honestly just as easily have been normal sugar it was so yummy. Fruit skewers are always a winner and just make the table look so colourful. I used pineapple, melon, strawberries, black and green grapes and blueberries. I also did blueberry cups instead of cupcakes in the cupcake stand. I also made a fennel, dill and pomegranate salad and had some quinoa chips in bowls. All the cakes used Natvia natural sugar substitute and Biona Coconut Palm Sugar
We were desperate to do a cake-smash photoshoot after seeing pictures of them on Pinterest so when making the chocolate cake which needed 3 tiers (so 3 cakes of the same size), I just made one extra in a smaller springform cake tin and sprinkled the top of it with sprinkles and put a candle in. Scroll down to see the end result!
Blueberry cups were a winner. My niece and nephew love fruit so I thought this would make it more fun and it’s just a different take on using cupcake cups. The kids loved them.
Sorry for the ‘silhouette’ shot! But it shows the banner and teepee that we bought him as his 1st birthday present quite nicely 🙂 Banner from Etsy, Teepee from Mama Portrafi on Etsy
And here he is… Braxton naked with a chocolate cake! He was actually way too gentle with it and we had to help him bash it up a bit. But once he got that first taste in his mouth he realised how yummy it was! (Amber necklace by Iris Bluebird.)
I really hope you like all my birthday party ideas. Feel free to share with your friends!
Happy birthday to my baby boy, Braxton ❤