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Two weekends ago, Little Man had a birthday. His very first birthday, in fact.

So we had a party.


I was so excited to have this party. I planned the food really far in advance and tested out different recipes. My husband was pretty upset when I had to bake several batches of cupcakes before finding one I liked.

Despite significant prior planning, the week leading up to the party kept becoming more and more full of other obligations. It was fairly frustrating to me to watch more and more things I couldn’t avoid filling up every day of that week. I knew it would be difficult to get everything finished. Add to this the project of fixing the deck that turned into a nightmare that we were finishing up to the night before, and I was one stressed mama.

The day of the party, there was too much to do, and too little time to do it. Unfortunately, the cupcakes were not finished being decorated by the time partygoers started to arrive. Thankfully, I have great friends who jumped in right away to help pipe, fill, and sprinkle until they were finished.

In the end, it was probably good. I can get really overacheivery sometimes (cough, cough) and overly concerned with the minutia that other people don’t notice. I can be pretty perfectionist, and it’s good for me to fall short.

And the party was a great success, if I do say so myself. Everyone seemed to have a good time.

That would be my brother-in-law. He was ready to party.

Emma from an owl’s nest and her little Olive were there.

Hello, Olive!

Little Man had lots of fun. Here he is making faces with his Auntie.

“Have a pretzel, Auntie.”

But here’s what you all want to know– What food did we serve?

Pizza Muffins! I tried a recipe about 4 times before scrapping it and starting over with my own made-up recipe.

Caprese pasta salad. No recipe here, just rotini cooked al-dente, tossed with fresh mozzarella balls, halved cherry tomatoes, loads of fresh basil from my garden, and a balsamic vinaigrette.

Cereal mix, from Martha Stewart, here. I added salt & pepper to the recipe, and threw in homemade goldfish, recipe here. Except we used animal-shaped mini cookie cutters rather than fish-shaped. I highly recommend that recipe for snacking on by itself. So easy and delicious!

And, what you’ve all been waiting for: Cupcakes!

We made 2 cupcakes with 3 different icings. And topped them with a miniature sugar cookie #1!

The first: Lemon Meringue Cupcake with a 7-minute frosting.

We didn’t change much in the recipe, but filled the cupcake in the center with lemon curd instead of spreading it on top before the frosting.

We used this recipe for the chocolate cupcakes

We made a cookies & cream type frosting using the weirdest and most delicious frosting recipe ever in which we folded mini chocolate chips and used a cookie scoop to make it look like a scoop of ice cream on top.

Then we used a ganache to frost the other half of the chocolate cupcakes. These were seriously chocolatey.

And the sprinkles? Those were my sister’s idea. We made WAY too much royal icing for the #1 cookies and so she squeezed out a bunch of dots onto wax paper. We let them dry, and voila! homemade sprinkles in just the right colors.

Little Man got his own cake…

I think he liked it.

We had a blast. I hope all the guests did.


To start planning for next year…


just kidding.

I have to wait until after Christmas before I start doing that.

P.S. I love this child.

0 comments on Little Man’s First Birthday

  1. You guys made the sprinkles??? What a clever sister you have! I thought it was amazing that you found them in just the right colors.

  2. That’s good! I was moderately relaxed by the time the party came around, even though we were still working. The night before was worse.

  3. Amber- fantastic ideas- can’t wait to try the gold fish- all about home-made rather than store bought…anything! (probably comes from growing up as an MK) I have to try your cupcakes as well- all look so very good =) Beth

    • The gold fish were sooo easy! I think they taste a little more like a cheezit than a goldfish cracker, but either way, they’re very cheesy. They puff up A LOT, so roll thin!

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