As promised I’m sharing how we celebrated Hayden Keith turning 1 and how I made sure my mom was a part of the day!! It was a bittersweet day for me on a couple levels. My firstborn / little baby boy was no longer a baby. He had turned into a walking, laughing, loud BOY. And, I wish my mom was there to celebrate.
Growing up with two sisters and no brothers we had to find something that was our own and it was birthdays. Basically your birthday was a national holiday. I blame this solely on my mom. She went above and beyond to make sure our birthday was our day and that didn’t change, as we got older. I was fortunate enough to live at home for all my birthdays with my mom, and every year I came down to a present on the table, her signature eggcake breakfast, a homemade cake (if she hadn’t ordered DQ) or flowers, something that showed me it was my day. I will cherish this forever.
I LOVE Birthdays because of this and so do my sisters. I wanted to make sure to carry on this tradition with Hayden. So, CONFESSION: I started planning his party when I was pregnant, I repeat I LOVE Birthdays.
I mentioned in a previous post about the Olympics and growing up in a running family so after deciding my Nelly (St. Lunatics), I’m #1 party was not age appropriate and more for me, I decided to go with a theme my mom would approve, TEAM USA / Olympics. Growing up the Olympics were huge in my family and they still are. I love the competitiveness, I cry during the national anthem or if someone has an amazing win. I figured what better way to celebrate being #1 than on top of a homemade Olympic podium, wearing a gold medal and his race bib.
To create our Hull Olympic Village, I created a pinterst board for ideas, scoured our local $1 World, which had Olympic/Team USA wrapping paper, medals and flag decorations. Ordered a banner and picked up some table decorations at Target. No Olympic party is complete without Olympic rings behind the podium, so those were a quick and easy DIY project. Joel blew up red, white and blue balloons and had them all over the floor, so when Hayden came downstairs from his nap he had a covered walk way of fun. This was a super cheap and easy way to keep the kids entertained.
You aren’t an Olympic legend until your face is on a Wheaties box. My incredibly talented friend, Kate, helped bring this to life. I mean….it’s so cute. I encouraged our athletes to wear Team USA gear which was so fun to see the outfits and it gave me an excuse to have Hayden do an outfit change. His first outfit was from J.Crew, a 1984 USA Olympic track onesie replica and then a USA Olympic onesie Joel brought back from the Utah training camp.
Knowing I wanted to incorporate my mom into the day, I decided there was no better way than to bake her delicious Wacky Cake. My mom was an excellent baker and her cakes were out of this world. When we were little, she would make themed cakes like princess castle and the hungry little caterpillar. I loved watching him smash into the cake I had made with LOVE. I knew my mom was proud that his first cake was her recipe, complete with her homemade frosting recipe and decorated with M&M Olympic rings—yum.
Since Hayden was too little to play games and it ended up raining forcing our athletes indoors. Joel and I decided that like the Olympics, we’ll try to recreate this theme every four years so they can evolve as Hayden get’s more active. Joel mentioned eventually they can turn into a beer Olympics (insert eye-roll).
We had a great time; Hayden loved the day and enjoyed spending time with family. I missed not having mom there but adding in some of the ways she made my birthdays special helped.
What do/did your parents do to make your birthday great or that you miss from your childhood?