We had your first birthday party on Sunday. We planned for it for weeks (dare I say months?). We made multiple trips to multiple stores to secure the decorations. We ordered things from different sites to supplement the store bought stuff. We did not one but two trial runs for your birthday cake. The day before the party, during both of your naps, we raced to the kitchen to bake EIGHT CAKE LAYERS (in batches of two) to ensure we had enough cake for everyone at the party (two four-layer cakes). After you went to bed, we made a vat of fruit salad, and I used three cans of frosting to put those cake layers together.
You probably had very little idea what was going on. You didn’t know who most of those people were. You won’t remember anything about the day. But trust me: it was great. It was a completely successful party. There were nigh on 40 people there, including 8 kids, 6 of whom were under the age of 5. There were your peninsula aunties and uncles, your BFF Tom, mommy’s coworkers, and of course family from both sides.
There was way too much food (of course) which neither daddy nor I really had time to eat. But don’t worry, we brought a lot of it home. (Two days later, we still have 2 gallon ziplocks of fruit salad to eat…so, get out your spoon…)
When we put your birthday cake in front of you and sang to you, everyone gathered around and you looked a little overwhelmed, and at the end of the song everyone clapped, so you clapped too, and then a wave of 40 people went “AWWWWW” and it startled you and you started crying, which made them laugh. We put a giant slice of rainbow layered cake in front of you, and it took some coaxing but you got your hands into it and you even ate some. You calmed down from crying, but we still seem to have a million pictures of you crying while clapping and cake-covered.
Daddy and I were so preoccupied during the party that we neglected to take many photos. But luckily our family members and friends are camera-happy and willing to share, so we’ll have plenty of visual memories.
You got so many presents that we don’t really know what do with all of them. We have hidden some to give to you later, when you’ve gotten used to the ones you have out now. (But your favorite things, of course, are still wiffle balls and plastic stacking cups.)
Everyone had a great time, and (of course) the party ran over the planned 2 hours. But despite me waking you from your morning nap around 10:45 so we could leave for your party, you were a total trooper, staying awake and mostly happy throughout the entire party, then the entire clean-up. On the way home, I sat in the backseat with you and tried to soothe you into falling asleep. You managed to stay awake until we got to the airport, at which time I watched you melt into sleep. You woke up 10 minutes later when we got home. Oops.
I think you had a lot of fun. I know I had a lot of fun. I’m glad so many people came. I’m glad we went all out for your first birthday. I’m glad everything went well. I’m glad it’s over and we made it through.
I’m not saying that parties or material possessions are an indicator of love. But, based purely on actual love, you are loved, little guy. Happy first birthday, and congratulations to all three of us for making it through your first year!