Thursday, January 13, 2011

Cora's First Birthday: Travel Theme

Why do people always say children grow fast? They don't! Cora's first year has been the longest year of my life, and she has seemed to grow remarkably slowly. I guess, though, looking back, time always seems to pass faster than when you're in the moment. No matter how quickly or slowly the year seems to have passed, however, every 365 days (roughly) demands a birthday party! And we delivered.

Cora's first birthday party was travel themed. Here was the invitation:

Now, I did not design these lovely invitations. Jennifer of Nounces on (plug: customized her design for me for a mere $15, then I could print as many as I wanted. Genius. I did have the paper cutter, corner rounder, and perforated-line cutter to add those realistic touches.

For decor, we had a map with pins showing all the places Cora had been this year, a sign saying, "Thank you for flying CM Airlines" with a bowl of peanut/pretzel baggies, and plastic cups with the CM Airlines logo, most of which was handled by my awesome sister, Darcy.

The big hit of it all was the cake made by Lauren, my talented sister-in-law, who flew in that night and stayed up till all hours of the night, finishing this masterpiece: a partial globe with a cute fondant airplane and a trailing streamer reading, "Happy Birthday Cora!"
For the remainder of the decorations, my wonderful mom handled flowers and balloons in the blue, pink, and green colors of the party. So, yes, team effort was the key word here! Cora conveniently woke up at 12:45 from her nap, almost as if she knew her cue. She was happy as a clam for nearly three hours of BBQ lunch, bubbles, candles, singing, cake-eating, and assisted present unwrapping. Cora made out like the baby bandit that she is with a plane full of toys and was proud of it.

Lastly, I did actually make the party favors, pocket-sized passport photo albums. The first page has her actual passport photo, and each of the rest of the pages has a picture of Cora traveling (in a carrier, baby bjorn, gift sack, rolling bag, cannon, backpack, etc.).

If you would like to DIY, here's the gist: I ordered these little passports from JoAnn's. (
Then, I picked out 13 photos, resized them in iPhoto (crop to iPhone 2x3 size), printed the photos out on sticker paper (available at Staples and such), and peeled and stuck! Well, it was pretty tricky to cut them all out and peel them all, so I got help from my very large family. We had a passport-making evening. 4-6 hours of work split up among 4-6 people worked very well. And now everyone has a pocket-sized photobook of Cora's travels.

Happy birthday, baby!