On October 9th we had Tommy’s first birthday party. Knowing we could have upwards of fifty guests we talked to friends and family about finding a place that would fit everyone comfortably. Being the beginning of October, there was no guarantee the weather would be nice enough to have the party at a park. So that idea was scratched. Thankfully Mom’s friend, Catherine, had the perfect place. The clubhouse owned by her home owner’s association was available for rent. It has a spacious room, bathrooms, a furnished living room, a small kitchen and a very nice patio. It was perfect! And both sets of grandparents were happy their homes weren’t going to end up full of people.
I had all sorts of plans for custom decorations and such, but a hellish work week with 12 hour days quickly killed most of those plans. (note to self for future birthdays: begin that stuff sooner than one week before) At one point in all of my “planning” Bill asked me why I was doing so much. “It’s his first birthday, he’s not going to remember it.” In all honesty, the theme and fun little details were all for me.
After much deliberation we decided on a Top Gun theme for the party… continuing from his “Top Son” birth announcements. Here are the invitations:
The front of the invitation had this photo:
It was comical how long it took us to get this photo. He would wear the sunglasses for all of three seconds before pulling them off.
Despite not being able to go to the party, Patrick went all out and made two cakes for the occasion.
The aircraft carrier was chocolate cake and the “sky” cake was lemon.
He even assembled and painted the airplanes that decorated the cake, with help from Michael. The plan was for Tommy to smash up the small blue cake. But he barely touched it. Somehow I ended up with a boy who doesn’t like to get messy.
For fun, I made water bottle labels that we stuck onto mini water bottles. I found waterproof polyester labels from here. They sat in a tub of ice and the ink never ran and the labels never wrinkled. Pretty cool!
Yes, that’s a rubber ducky dressed as a pilot in the background. They were way too cute to pass up.
This is what the whole label looked like:
Some photos from the party. Most were taken by Michael.
These cheap airplanes were entertaining for the four-year olds in attendance.
When it was time for a nap I passed him off to Jackie. She never passes up the opportunity to snuggle.
Aidan and Jilly anxiously waiting for Bill to cut the cake!
Michael having some fun with the sunglasses.
He really seemed to like it when we were all singing to him.
Even giving him a fork didn’t persuade him to play with the cake.
The funniest part of this photo is the reflection of Jackie in the mirror trying to get Tommy to smile.
After the party was over, we went back to Mom and Dad’s house to open presents. With people coming and going at different times, it was just easier to wait until after the party to play.
Despite getting a bunch of really wonderful books, clothes and toys, Tommy’s favorite gift was the My Pal Scout. It’s a plush dog that plays music and talks. The best part is that it’s programmable. (never thought I’d ever be plugging a stuffed animal into my computer). I programmed Tommy’s name and favorite color, food and animal. Well… Tommy doesn’t really have a favorite of those, so I plugged in ones that I thought were funny. So one song goes like this: (yes, I know the words, it’s stuck in my head a lot)
“I’d like an alpaca, please. It’s my favorite animal. I’d like to to be blue. It’s my favorite color. I’d like it to eat bibimbap, please. It’s my favorite food. And I’ll call it Tommy, just like you.”
Eventually we will change the items to suit his actual favorites, but for now, it’s entertaining Bill and me too. And of course, the toy has volume control and an on/off switch… as all toys should. Tommy really loves that darned dog. It has to be on our lap when I rock him to sleep and he even started whining when our friend Max got one for his birthday and Tommy couldn’t play with it. We are talking about buying a second one to have in storage in case this one gets lost or breaks. I’ll try to remember to take a picture of him with it.
It was a wonderful party and I can’t thank everyone enough for helping out and for all of the wonderful gifts Tommy received. Thank you!!