Celebrating your baby’s first birthday

My girls are just two-years old and I can honestly say that I’ve struggled with planning their first birthday party.

I’m not sure if it’s because I secretly don’t want them to grow up, but whatever the reason, I always procrastinate…and I’m not usually a procrastinator.

For their first birthday I was so excited to celebrate our girls and all of the wonderful milestones that they had achieved; they’d come so far being only three-pounds when they were born and by their first birthday they were sprouting teeth and crawling.

I wasn’t procrastinating because I didn’t want to celebrate them, it was just that this was the first birthday party I ever had to plan for my kids and I had no clue where to start!

One struggle for their first birthday party was the idea of a theme.

I walked into the party store in town and was overwhelmed to say the least!  Dora, Sophia, Elmo, Disney and the list went on and on.  Not only were there way too many options but the costs started adding up very quickly.

Themed plates, themed balloons, themed napkins, themed loot bags.

I left the store with my head spinning and decided that we wouldn’t have a theme for their first birthday party.  We went with a green and pink colour scheme and it ended up saving us some money in the end.  Themed plates and napkins cost more than plain coloured ones, as do themed balloons vs plain balloons.

For the décor, I just kept it simple.  Some balloons, some streamers and a big piece of crepe paper for the table cloth (that way the kids could draw and spill on it and it wouldn’t matter).

I made my own birthday invitations that I couldn’t have been happier with and all it cost was the price of photo paper, envelopes and stamps.

One year later, their second birthday slowly crept onto the horizon and I found myself dawdling yet again.

This time I struggled with who to invite.

For their first birthday we had a packed house.  All of their friends and mine who we spent time with throughout my maternity leave, we also included family.  I never second guessed the guest list.

For their second birthday who should we invite?  Just family?  Family and friends?  Our house can accommodate a decent amount of people but which route should we take?

In the end we invited family and only our closest friends who had spent time with the girls in the past year…it was perfect.

I once again made the party invitations which saved some money and turned out exactly as I’d hoped.  I also designed a special thank you card to be put in each loot bag to thank everyone in attendance.

I caved on the theme idea this time around though.  The girls are huge fans of minions so it was a no brainer.

On a theme: The girls are a huge fan of minions so it was a no brainer.

On a theme: The girls are a huge fan of minions so it was a no brainer.

I tried to be smart when it came to the cost of themed party items; I went with solid yellow napkins and plates and just bought the odd minion wall decoration.  I also decided to make my own minion themed food: minion cupcakes, minion bananas and minion chocolate covered marshmallows.  I think I saved money when it came to the cupcakes vs ordering a cake, but I honestly can’t say that the cute marshmallows saved me anything.   I also hadn’t anticipated that I would spend the entire day before the party prepping in the kitchen!  I might’ve saved money but I definitely didn’t save time!

My own minion themed food: minion cupcakes, minion bananas and minion covered marshmallows!

My own minion themed food: minion cupcakes, minion bananas and minion covered marshmallows!

Minion banana, anyone?

Minion banana, anyone?

Looking back I wouldn’t change anything, I was so happy with the outcome of the food and received many compliments, but I wish I had known how time consuming it would be!

Another item that I made was the minion loot bags.  I saved some money using just plain yellow bags, but I had to buy expensive sticker paper in order to make the minion faces.  I also spent a pretty penny on the items inside the loot bags as they were minion themed as well.

Money-saving minion loot bags!

Money-saving minion loot bags!

I went to a first birthday party shortly after and was given a cute, yummy cookie for each of the girls rather than a loot bag.  I love this idea and might adopt it for next time.

All in all, despite my procrastinating, the party was a great success.  The girls had a great time and so did everyone in attendance.

As all twin parents can attest there’s very little (if any) two-for-one deals when it comes to twins.  You might find the odd boutique shop that offers a twin discount but in most cases you have to buy two of everything at regular price.  Although parties are and will continue to be an expensive event, there is a bonus when it comes to having twins:  (at least for now) we are able to celebrate our two children with one party.  As they grow older they’ll make their own friends and develop their own interest, but for now, it’s a welcome bonus.

Brianne Ducharme

I’m a busy mom of twins with a passion for sharing stories and information. This comes from my background as a local TV producer, where I’ve had the opportunity to share experiences with viewers for many years. Now I’m finding a way to couple my background with the hardest and most fulfilling job I’ve ever had…being a mother to my amazing identical twin daughters. I write my blogs as a way to share my experiences, but also hope that it provides a bit of help to those parents out there who might be going through something similar.

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