A year ago we were still reeling, and he was this little bundle of comfort and happiness. Every month the 21st and 22nd are inextricably linked by life and loss, but having this little reminder of life makes the loss seem more bearable.
When Daddy is a pilot, what other choice do you have than to throw an airplane party? You know me. I love a good theme party, and I love doing it in a reasonable, budget conscious way. This party fits that bill, and was so much fun to put together!
So, basically as soon as we knew Owen was a boy, I knew he would have an airplane 1st birthday party. (Yes, girls can have airplane parties too.) The Pinterest-ing started about 6 months from party time because I'm a crazy person that way. I pieced together things from all over the place.
Every party needs a starting point, and for me it was this invitation. I loved everything about it! The colors, the design, and especially that cute little pilot peeking over the top!
One thing I have never done for a party before is purchasing party printables. I've seen them before but honestly, I always dismissed them as a waste of time and money. I love themes, but I don't like hitting the party store and buying off the shelf, and party printables felt like that.
Then I discovered that The Party Stork, the shop that designed the invitation had an entire set of printables to match, and my heart went pitter patter! They were adorable! The girls at The Party Stork were so wonderful to work with. They helped me personalize everything, and even let me build a custom package with just the things I knew I was going to use. I am sold on party printables! They made my life so easy!
I love these signs. That little bit of personalization really put things over the edge. I printed them out on cardstock and had them in different spots around the house.
Make sure you get to the end of the post...there might just be a coupon code down there for you! :)
This was my first time really decorating cookies this way. I've done some Christmas cookies like this, but nothing fancy, and not with homemade royal icing. I'm in love! These were so much fun to make! I used the 20 Second Icing technique from Sweet Sugar Belle. I could spend all day on her site! I think I did pretty well for my first try!
One of my favorite pieces of decoration was the airplane banner. You know that feeling when you have something in your head and it turns out exactly how you had hoped in real life? This is that banner! I knew that I wanted to have a banner that looked like a plane was pulling all of Owen's monthly pictures. (The fact that he actually HAS monthly pictures is a miracle in itself!) I started with an airplane coloring page, and then filled in the colors using photo shop. The pictures are all from Instagram, so they are all the same size. I had them printed as 4x6 photos and cut off the edges. Then I made the banner out of cardstock and double-sided tape! Easy peasy.
It all started with this frosting by Your Cup of Cake. It might be my new favorite frosting! A perfect combination of whipped cream and cream cheese. I combined it with these cupcake toppers from Smile Steady, and ended up with some adorable cupcakes!
The paper airplanes are just scrapbooking paper, double-sided tape and toothpicks. For a paper airplane that size I used 1/16th of a piece of 8.5 x 11 cardstock. One night I camped out on the couch, watched White Christmas, and folded away.
And of course, what 1st birthday is complete without a smash cake? I used a 6 inch cake pan, and used the batter that was left over from making 30 cupcakes. I ended up with basically a cake and a half. Enough for 3 layers! It is frosted in blue tinted buttercream, and the clouds are the same as the cupcakes. Some cute straws, a leftover paper airplane and some twine and we are all set!
And what good is a smash cake if you don't get to smash it!
For the big kids at the party, we set up a simple game. I marked out a target with masking tape, and they got to decorate their own paper airplanes and take turn scoring points. It kept them busy and was a lot of fun!
For food, we went with what has become my standard, go-to party fare. Our local grocery store (Jewel, if you are in Chicagoland) does amazing fried chicken, and their prices are incredible. I am all for outsourcing food for parties, especially when it is budget friendly. There is a package that comes with sides, so we did potato salad and coleslaw. Fruit and veggies trays, chips, soda, water, DONE!
Keeping the food simple lets you focus on the parts of the party that really make it special. No one wants to be trapped in their kitchen while everyone else is having fun!
Now...back to The Party Stork!
Like I said, I am totally sold on party printables now. Hands down worth the money.
I'm already leaning on Abbey to have an art party in June (she's a craft fiend, so it fits perfectly!
And I would be lying to you if I said that I wasn't already dreaming of a Monster party for Owen! (I have a problem...I need help...)
The girls over at The Party Stork are giving you, my lovely readers, 20% off your next order!
Just use the code: itsalongstory when you check out. Thanks, girls!
Are you a party printable user?
What are your party planning shortcuts?