Logan Turns One!

And just like that my baby boy is one…he has officially entered toddler-hood and I’ve officially aged about 10 years. After a very emotional month filled with various degrees of illness and other basic life challenges, Logan’s 1st birthday party put everything back into perspective. Even though I was forced to accept that he’ll no longer be considered an infant and I’ve gained a few extra gray hairs, the trying month we had just experienced as a family was pushed aside when we celebrated our boy and all the good he’s put into this world in one short year.

Taking a step back from my normal posts where I praise Logan and talk about his very existence the entire time, I thought I'd give you a first hand look at how I went about planning the party and the little details that made it unforgettable. We gathered our closest friends and immediate family at Verona Ristorante for an intimate Italian lunch. I knew the restaurant would be dolled up with festive decor for the Holiday but I wanted to add my own little flare to the room. I had the idea of a “Winter Woodlands” theme in my head so I tried to stick to that when buying and assembling my crafts. After a quick trip to Michael’s Craft Store and a lot of mula later I started with the banners. This was all very easy and hardly crafty but it turned out real cute and will be saved until the end of time.  Putting these banners together took about 30 minutes. The only other tools I needed was a glue gun and a steady hand. Burnt myself a few times but we do what we do for our kids!

Okay, here’s what I purchased:

-        2 packs of the Recollections fishtail board banner in sparkly white

-        1 pack of the Recollections fishtail burlap banner 5 inches tall

-        1 pack of mambiSTICKS Victoria Cursive Alphabet Stickers in black glitter

-        1 pack of large elegant black alphabet stickers from Recollections

-        Blue, white and polka dot fabric strip banner (pre-made from Michaels)

-        1 roll of jute twine

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Next up is this adorable woodland deer fabric strip banner which was not my doing. I caved and ordered it from RawEdgeSewingCo. off Etsy - it was the perfect addition to my little princes' highchair! Find your way to this store if you’re looking for party decor for your kids and have run out of time to do one more thing. And the crown...oooh the crown! Hannah Freas of FreasNaturals hand knits the most charming one of a kind items. From felt crowns like Logan's, to bonnets and bombers and bows, she uses gorgeous fabric and the most earthy colors -  I can only hope and wish to create such things with my own hands. 

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And the beautiful photos shown below, shot by Phoenix Photodesign, are from Logan’s Cake Smash Photo Shoot. We did this in October right as the weather was starting to change. I wanted to be able to capture the Fall leaves and dress Logan and the “set” as wintery as I was allowed given the time of year. I dressed him in the most precious sweater and jeans from Zara so he looked cozy and cute and picked up the plaid blanket and accent acorns from Home Goods. I’m not a baker so I made the vanilla cake with vanilla frosting from the box and it was delicious! Both Logan and the little bugs from the forest agreed. The photographer did all the rest, capturing the perfect amount of ground, leaves and trees. My sister blew a few of the pictures up as 8x10s and into frames they went. Done!

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As for favors, I knew I wanted to create something subtle and sweet that didn’t require a ton of time or money. I decided a dessert treat from scratch would be personal enough but like I said I’m not a baker so I did something even Logan could figure out. I followed the recipe from Very Best Baking by Nestle. Click the link to check out the ingredients and recipe. I made about 45 in total (doubled the ingredients) and let them sit overnight. I made one more trip to Michael's and scooped up pretzel rod treat bags, white hang tags, the “modern thank you wood stamp” by Recollections and gold ink.  Lastly, I situated all of the favors in a small basket that sat next to the homemade/from-the-box funfetti cake I had whipped up the night before. Done!

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I arrived a half hour early and set up the space with my little decorations. Before people started to arrive I looked around and the room truly looked beautiful - it was just as I pictured in my mind. Finally, something went right! As easy as these crafts were and certainly not something to gloat over, I was left feeling like a super mom. I was left feeling accomplished and that's no easy feat when you're a mother. I put my heart into planning the perfect day for my boy (which involved a lot more than arts & crafts) and was proud of myself with the outcome. There I said it! So, I patted myself on the back and looked forward to the celebration to come.

The party was more heartwarming and more special than I ever imagined it would be. Chris and I felt the love for our boy radiate the room. We felt the happiness that his tiny being bestowed upon others. And we felt calm and peace for the first time in a while. I had said in my most recent post Reflections that on his birthday “I will relive the day he was born and all the little details that got him here.” I'm still doing that but now I have another day to add to that list and it is this beautiful one I so dreaded just one month ago. So many life moments we are afraid to let happen end being the most cherished. For me, this year has been filled with more joy and happiness, more emotional ups and downs, more mess ups and clean ups and more feelings of love than I think some people experience in a whole lifetime. I am the luckiest and this perfect celebration was the icing on the homemade/from-the-box funfetti cake :)

Oh my sweet Logan, you brought me to life. I love you to the moon and mars and back a thousand times. Thank you for choosing me to grow you, raise you and love you all the days I'm breathing. Happy 1st birthday to your precious soul - Mama
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