We held the party the week after Quinn's actual birthday on May 16th. There were some family conflicts on the 8th, it was the day before Mother's Day and we just weren't all that ready yet. Having it the next weekend worked out beautifully as everyone was able to make it AND we got really awesome weather. What a nice change to not be planning a party while worrying about snow emergencies.
Ma-Ma and Yeh-Yeh drove up for the occasion and there was full representation from the Masterson/Furtado side. All three of my first cousins were here with their kids! That was particularly awesome - we hadn't all been together since my Grandmother's funeral and I hardly remember anything about the weeks surrounding that event. I hadn't seen their kids in a LONG time either - they've all grown up so much. Lily really enjoyed spending time with all of her older cousins - she spent a lot of time hanging out with Ryan and Emily, the oldest of the gang. I'm only sad that we weren't smart enough to try getting all of them together for a group cousins photo....next time!
A couple of days before the party I happened upon the copy of "What to Expect the First Year" that my health insurance company had sent me when Quinn was born. So I decided to flip to the "Twelfth Month" section to see what it had to say. Turns out there's a big subsection titled "THE FIRST BIRTHDAY PARTY". I found the following advice there:
- "Keep the invites light" - hmmm so maybe, in their opinion, 40 people was a bit many?
- "Ditto the decor" - well that one was easy since I'm WAY not together enough to have a theme or anything. Just some balloons scattered around the apartment. Cool - now I can pretend I did that on purpose
- "Time it right" - I put in SOME effort here, but they say to keep it short "an hour and half at the most" and well I knew we'd have folks here much longer than that.
- "Let her eat cake: but make sure it's not the kind of cake she shouldn't eat" - we had a yummy cake from Lyndell's with about 2 inches of thick yummy frosting. Take that WTETFY!
- "Don't send in the clowns" - (no organized party games or performers) - again, my lack of organization skills along with my steadfast belief that baby/toddler birthday parties should be simple, fun affairs kept me in their good graces.
- "Don't command a performance" - here's where they tell you not to expect your one year old to take their first steps AT THE PARTY. Really? Do people expect that?
- "Record it for posterity" - here's where I get self-referential, or recursive, or something
So despite pretty much failing on the whole "first birthday party" thing according to the good folks at WTETFY we had a pretty freaking awesome time. Quinn had a blast and was never "over-stimulated" or "over-tired" or "spending much of his celebration in tears" (all things that WTETFY was very concerned would happen). I guess we squeaked by since we omitted the clowns - PHEW! He loved all the attention and charmed everyone in sight. He also loved the cake. And now.. pictures (also, more here)
Ma-Ma and Grammy showing off the spread. As usual we had a mix of yummy stuff: grinders from Fall River, dumplings, chicken wings, salads, some yummy pork dish that Gordon created, and on and on...
Quinn - looking kind of like he should be the photo near "keep invites light" in WTETFY. I swear he had a MUCH better time than this photo would lead you to believe. But he's still cute even when looking slightly concerned about something.
The First Birthday Cake (contains no unsweetened fresh whipped cream, carrots or bananas.. oops)
Too interested in the cake to notice the big birthday kiss from Uncle Eric
Still. Eating. Cake.
Post-party, getting a ride in his new wagon from Jeh Jeh
Birthday boy and his big sister
Back at home, going through the birthday loot together. Note that Lily is wearing his brand new Thomas rain coat. She wore it for the next two days or so - Quinn seemed
Happy Birthday Baby Boy!!