Last weekend, on 12th February, my littlest boy turned 1 year old.
And so, like I always do, I had spent the previous weeks planning a little celebration to mark the occasion.
We always celebrate the kids birthdays with a party...this year Noah is having his 2nd birthday at a soft play center and Tyne will probably be having his in a local village hall as he's asked for a bouncy castle, but for a first birthday we always keep things a bit lower key - preferring to opt for a small tea party at home as we find it's a bit less overwhelming for the little ones and gives us more freedom to work around their routine too.
For Sailor's birthday, I decided that our traditional birthday tea party would have a nautical theme as it just seemed so fitting given his name!
I ordered some lovely nautical invitations, and bought him a cute personalised 1 vest from My 1st Years to wear on the day.
When it came to deciding what presents to get for him though - I was pretty stumped! The problem with having a third little boy turning 1, particularly when they're all so close in age, is that his big brothers have pretty much already had everything that there is to have!
So whereas lots of people buy push along trikes for first birthdays - we already have 2 barely used sitting in the cellar! We already have every ride on, walker, rocker, bouncer and baby toy that you can think of and so it was a real challenge to think of what we could get for him that marked the occasion but wasn't something that was given just for the sake of it.
In the end, I decided on a teepee - this is one thing that the boys haven't had yet and it seemed like something that was rather sweet for a first birthday, plus it would give Sailor a place to hide away from his annoying brothers which I was sure he'd be on board with!
I had considered getting a personalised teepee but I decided against it in the end, and just went with a nice plain grey and white one that would match our living room where we intend to store it - I originally ordered one from Wayfair which I really liked but they ended up letting me down, as despite me ordering it 10 days in advance and them telling me it would be despatched on the 9th February - they actually emailed me on the 10th February to tell me it was delayed and wouldn't arrive for another 2 weeks!!
So it was panic stations! I cancelled that order, and the search was on to find a teepee that fitted our needs and could be delivered within 2 days - luckily we found this one from Great Little Trading Co - not only could they have it delivered to us the next working day, but it was also larger than the original one AND cheaper by £40 too! Winner!
To go alongside his teepee, we bought him a little wooden birthday cake, a tambourine, a wooden puzzle, some wooden blocks and a very sweet little wooden post box - he also got a lovely little ball pool too! He really liked his gifts (not that he got to open many himself!) and all of the boys have been loving their new Kids Only hideout
I ordered some really beautiful decorative items from my favourite children's party store Party Pieces and, as always, they didn't disappoint! My favourite item was this beautiful bunting which was such fantastic quality and drew lots of compliments from our party guests too - the pale blue and mint pom poms were also a really lovely touch.
We also ordered some lovely blue confetti filled balloons which made a lovely touch - I can't recommend Party Pieces highly enough for fantastic quality and unusual party decor at really reasonable prices.
Our straws and party cups also came from Party Pieces Chevron Divine collection, which I think is just beautiful.
Food, Cake & Theme
As I hadn't planned games for the party (because they usually just cause bickering among the kids and Sailor is too young for them anyway!), I wanted to get the theme across in the food...I also decided to do a Message In A Bottle too as I thought it was sweet and worked to theme well...
I left out a little bottle with some notepaper and a pen, alongside a note asking guests to please write out a little message for Sailor to read on his 18th birthday which we will keep safe in his baby box for him...I haven't read his messages but I'm sure they'll be lovely for him to look back on!
For the food, I wanted to really stick with my nautical theme - so we had lots of themed things like Fish dippers, Fishing rods (breadsticks!), fishing bait (Jelly worms!), and Fish n Chips!
I also made some cupcakes and - as I always do for their first birthdays - I made Sailor's birthday cake too (If you follow me on Instagram you may have seen my Insta story showing how I was up until 4 am making it, because I had to bin my first one after forgetting to put any sugar in! I think Mary Berry will be sleeping soundly tonight safe in the knowledge that I won't be after her Queen Of Baking crown!)
The cake was, without a doubt, the most lame attempt of any of the 3 boys so far which doesn't do much for the mummy guilt - but what can I say?! I tried my best and my 4 am cake decorating skills are seriously lacking!!
During the party, we did our usual Cake Smash - this is something that I have done for each of the boys on their first birthdays so it was a tradition we just had to follow!
I just love doing these as it's so much fun to watch their reactions to being confronted with a gigantic cake all for themselves, and as it was Sailor's first taste of cake he was just delighted once he realised that he could actually eat it rather than just sit and prod at the icing - he made a really good go of it!
I just love the photos that we ended up with from Sailor's Cake Smash, here are some of my favourites:
But of course, he couldn't manage it all by himself and so his brothers were on hand to step in and help out too...
And it is lovely to be able to compare the three boys on their 1st birthdays doing their cake smashes too...Noah being the odd one out who hated the whole thing of course!! Infact he still wasn't a fan of it even for Sailor's cake smash and wouldn't get involved at all...he's a funny one!
All in all, our littlest man seemed to really enjoy his first birthday and even learned how to blow his own candle out on his cake too.