Sunday, July 24, 2011

The first birthday

The first birthday is quite an achievement.  The whole family has made it through a very busy and amazing year.  For us, we would never have made it without the support of family and friends.  So for us the first birthday is our opportunity to celebrate, as well as say thank you.  It still seems as though the Poppet is a tiny baby:  she was a bit early, so we had a nice surprise.  Sweetheart (the four year old) and the Poppet have been great sisters - I really hope that they will be good friends too.  I'm really looking forward to seeing more of the Poppet's personality develop in the coming year.

Between the girls and I there has been a near constant run of illness for nearly a month.  In the last ten days I've been very sick with asthma and the birthday girl has been on a bit of a nursing strike.  Offers of help have been made and received,  I never knew how difficult it could be to look after two children while being sick yourself.  The birthday was therefore put together with as much as convenience as possible.  I'm personally convinced that online grocery shopping is the world's greatest gift.  My husband got roped into making cheese rolls last night, and my mum came up with baking for the party, as well as helping the Sweetheart make fairy bread.

We held the party at the Plunket Kilbirnie rooms (an awesome party venue).  Unfortunately we couldn't use the park due to the heaviest rainfall Wellington has experienced in some time.  All of the Poppet's wee baby friends were sick (with different illnesses - the usual baby array of teething/ bowel/ colds) but Sweetheart's friends definitely made it up by volume (sound that is - four year olds are noisy)!

The birthday girl:

I had left this gorgeous bonnet in a spare clothes box so retrieved it from the ceiling during the week.  I knitted this and my mum put it together in the days after my daughter's birth.  Let me know if anyone wants to borrow the pattern.

 Yummy sandwiches.  While sick last week I managed to read heaps of magazines at the After Hour's clinic and got some cool sandwich ideas.  Satay chicken on rye and cucumber, cream cheese and spring onion.  Satay chicken got a lot of compliments - my secret is buying the satay sauce from Khmer Satay on Cuba Mall - I buy a big pot and freeze it in small containers.
 The Very Hungry Caterpillar is a favourite of my older daughter, and I'm sure will be a favourite of the birthday girls as well!  It was also very straightforward to make, this being a key success factor after being sick for over a week.
 I love that brief moment before parties when everything is all set out and lovely.  The butterfly fairy bread was a big hit!  Mum brought up from the South Island the fudge she used to make for our special occasions when growing up. But the party favourite was cheese rolls (not pictured).  An entire tray load was consumed!  The birthday girl managed to get through most of one by herself!
 The big sister had a great time running around!  These pirate plastic rolls were quite cool - they are latex free and inflate very quickly.  I think I got them from The Baby's Room in the Old Bank Arcade.

Scoffing a cheese roll

Sweetheart and her besty took off with handfuls of food and hid it in the playhouse.  They were very, very pleased with themselves.  It was not fun to clean.

The picture below is of some cool gifts:  elderflower champagne and homemade cola (actual homemade cola syrup - not just soda stream)!  We have such clever friends! The Poppet received many generous gifts - many handmade and or very thoughtfully chosen.  Thank you all.  Every year that passes we realise how lucky we are with all our amazing family and friends.  I feel really blessed that there are so many people we wanted to share the day with that we needed to book out a bigger place!  We have received a lot of love and support over the last year as we have found our way to being a family of four.  I look forward to future birthdays and opportunities to look back with gratitude.


  1. Lovely day! Satay chicken sandwiches sound sooo good. Omnomnom. I'm finally feeling significantly better today, know this as have much more appetite. Actually able to think of weeks meals for supermarket shop. I think we need to get onto this online shopping thing though...

    Re: Bonnet pattern, what size is it? I want toddler sized ones for Sweets.

  2. Pattern goes from six months to size two so should be sweet. Can change the length of the strap as well/ add extra button holes.

    I thought that you would love the sound of the sandwiches!!

  3. Cheese rolls! Getting through that first year sane is an achievement for parents. Hope the health improves!