Our daughter's first birthday party was cancelled due to Covid-19, but we were determined to give her a celebration we would always remember!
When my first daughter was born our hospital room was flooded with family and friends who couldn’t wait to love on her. My second daughter, on the other hand, ended up in the NICU and we couldn’t even hold her for the first 24 hours. Our oldest daughter wasn’t allowed to visit her in the hospital because it was a closed unit and we turned away visitors until we could bring her home. Luckily our stay was short!
The girls’ first birthdays continued this pattern. We threw a big party at home for our oldest daughter complete with a photobooth, big beautiful cakes, and so much décor! We had a house full of people! When it came time to plan our second daughter’s first birthday, Coronavirus hit. We and our families were really bummed that we couldn’t all be together to celebrate her birthday, but I was determined to make the best of it!
If I’m being totally honest, my sweet girl’s birthday kind of fell to the wayside. It had been my intention to start pulling everything together after spring break, but not-so-slowly the pandemic started taking over and my mind was elsewhere. Suffice to say, procrastination left me with few choices.
They say there are only two things you can count on, death and taxes, but I say there’s a third – Wal-Mart pick up!
I searched online for party supplies and only ordered things that were available for same or next day pick up. I also called and ordered two cakes so I could make one quick trip for everything I needed.
The Biggest Bang for your Buck
Balloons are a quick and easy way to add color and décor to a party. In general, balloons are also pretty cheap, but if you order a bunch at a party store the cost can add up quickly. Not like that mattered in our case, party stores were closed! I ended up finding the Bunch O Balloons Portable Party Balloon Electric Air Pump Starter Pack at Wal-Mart and lucky me, it was available for same day pick up AND super cheap. I was sold!
So this thing is pretty amazing. It’s not a helium tank so you need to tie the balloons to things unless you want them all over your floor (which is certainly fun too). Basically the balloons come with these plastic tubes attached that you plug into the machine and within seconds you have a whole bunch of balloons inflated AND sealed!
The particular box I bought came with 16 gold balloons, but there are other colors available too. Then I purchased another pack with pink, teal and white. All together the colors were so bright and cheerful!
My initial idea was to tie the balloons to her highchair but there weren’t many places to attach them, so I improvised and wrapped most of them around the stair railing. I saved a few more to hang on the wall behind her high chair which I crudely attached with Scotch tape!
Say it with a Sign
I’ve always loved cute banners and almost every party I host has one. I found this Way To Celebrate! Customizable Banner Kit that had bright colors similar to the balloons I already had in my cart. Like the other items, I also chose this item because it was available for same day pick up. Once I got it home I laid out the banner and decided what I wanted it to say and where to cut it. I taped it up on the wall with the balloons and voila – instant party background!
Even though she couldn’t be there in person, my mom still wanted to make sure our daughter felt special on her big day. My mom ordered a Card My Yard that was set up the night before. The funny thing is that my dad had my daughter’s birthday written down wrong so the sign actually showed up the day before her birthday, but we never give up an opportunity to make a celebration last longer! We used these fun signs as the backdrop for her birthday photo shoot!
I love cake. Really, I love all sweets, but birthday cake always tastes a little sweeter when it’s celebrating someone you love (aww). I generally always have cakes custom ordered, but as is the theme with this birthday party, I was in a rush. I called Wal-Mart’s bakery and let them know what I wanted – a pretty round pink cake with white piping and white letters with a matching smaller smash cake for the birthday girl. If I’m being honest, I wasn’t expecting much, but when I picked up the cakes the next day I was THRILLED! How sweet are these?!
To top it off, they threw the smash cake in for free so I only paid $12 for BOTH cakes! As if that wasn’t great enough, they were delicious! The birthday girl absolutely loved her cake and the rest of us couldn’t get enough of the larger one.
Our First Virtual Party
It’s 2020 and despite all current evidence to the contrary, it’s a great time to be alive! Technologically speaking anyway. I set up a Zoom meeting and sent invitations to all of our family members. My sweet grandma recently got her first smart phone and has just now figured out FaceTime so we went ahead and called her separately so as not to freak her out!
We might not have all been able to be together in person, but our families got to sing Happy Birthday and see the birthday girl dig into her smash cake! Since this was many people’s first virtual party I think it made the day extra memorable. I’ve been feeling extra grateful lately – grateful for the beautiful weather and the space to play safely outside – and I feel the same way about my sweet daughter’s party. It wasn’t the one we had hoped to throw, but we got to celebrate her in the best ways we knew how and I know she felt so loved! Until next time.
All the Radness.