First Birthday

Well my son is rapidly approaching his first birthday, and its all my online birth club mummies can talk about. What are you doing for your baby’s first birthday? is the catch cry.

At first I really felt the pressure. What was I going to do for his birthday? Should I go for theme of Wiggles? Tigger? Rainbow? Should I make guests dress up in fancy dress (quickly dismissed as no one we know would dress up)? Should we invite people we barely know because they have kids? and on and on it went. Then I took a step back and thought “woa this is taking on a life of its own”. It was. Normally we don’t do parties and we certainly don’t do themes when we do. Yet here I was thinking of balloons, napkins, and decorations. Essentially I was setting myself up for major disappointment and heart ache. I realised that this experience would not be enjoyable for myself or my partner.

So after taking several slow steps back, putting the decorations down, and taking some calming breaths I had an epiphany. Just keep it simple stupid. So now we are taking a low-key approach. We figure (a) our son is not going to remember or care what if any theme we pick, and (b) save the elaborate parties for when he is older and will care. The party will probably just be a simple family dinner or lunch with a nice cake, with maybe a visit to a aquarium/zoo thing.

It has been amazing reading online what other mums are doing. Some mum’s are mentioning elaborate themes, cakes costing $80-$100, entertainment, renting parks, and jumping castles. Some mum’s have older kids to take in to account, or large families. Others just have lots of friends with children to consider. Some mums are just über creative and crafty so are channeling their inner Martha into the party.  I do wish I was as creative as some of these mum’s and be able to do the beautiful cakes and decorations they seem to be churning out. But alas the creative gene never made it to me. I must have skipped that session when they were handing it out.

I have come to the conclusion that a baby’s first birthday is purely for the parents. If you are the sort of parent who loves a party than you will probably have an elaborate one, if you have a big, close family then you will probably have a big one. But if your like me and like low-key affairs then baby is going to get a low-key party.

Either way my biggest advice would be, do what you want and are comfortable doing for the birthday. At the end of the day you want to be enjoying the day with your child so if you don’t want a big party, don’t have one. Dont give into pressure and do it your way. Plan around your baby’s routine and most of all HAVE FUN!


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Literary Feline
    Jan 18, 2011 @ 20:13:11

    Mine’s not even here and I’ve wondered about this. LOL I mentioned to a friend that I couldn’t see going all out for my little one’s first birthday, especially since she won’t remember it, and my friend actually got upset! For many of the same reason you list, I think my husband and I will aim for a low key first birthday. We aren’t big party people, and I think saving the fuss for when our child can appreciate it will be less stressful all around.


  2. tamking10
    Jan 18, 2011 @ 21:25:33

    Can’t agree more. I’ve seen all the chatter around as well, and while I understand that a first birthday is as much a milestone for the child, as it for the parents, it can be a bit too much sometimes.

    As for spending big money on a cake, I’d rather put it into a savings account and make a few cupcakes. Nothing quite as much fun as licking the beaters, even if you are only one!


    • caspette
      Jan 19, 2011 @ 16:08:47

      Tamking – Speaking of licking beaters/spoon my poor son is going to have a fight on his hands when it comes to that particular tradition LOL

      But I agree we were only talking last night that maybe cupcakes might be a better way of going, and I love the idea of money in the bank. With prices the way they are I shudder to think what cost of living will be like when our kids get to 20.

      Literaryfeline – It’s funny how random people you dont really know get really upset about it. I had a similar situation when this one lady (a customer someone I had never met before) got most indignant when I said we weren’t doing a big thing.


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