3 little Miracles

3 little Miracles

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Celebrating Turning 1!

We have marked each of our children's 1st birthday's with a big celebration of family and friends, but with Rachel the year seemed to have passed even faster and the meaning of the celebration seemed to have taken on greater significance.  I have literally been thinking about this party from the day I found out I had a baby inside of me for a third time and when I found out that our little miracle was a girl BOOM the planning was ON.  However, our little Rachel came into our lives a little earlier then planned and under the umbrella of a little bit of a medical crisis that we just had to trust God with . . . . . and as always He came through.  So with this celebration of Rachel turning ONE, we wanted to celebrate her life but we also wanted to honor those who truly got us through a difficult pregnancy, Rachel's stay in the NICU, and spent time on their knees (and still do) on behalf of our little girl and her future.

Sadly Birthday Girl was a bit under the weather due to having her physical and shots the day before, in fact a few hours before her party she was running a temp of 102.  So to say the least, we were very careful to keep her out of the chill as much as possible and we decided to save the eating of her first sugar" for another day when we would just fake the photo session for the pictures we want.  So her cute little birthday outfit that I suffered so long to pick was covered under a hat and sweater most of the party, and she was inside the house the rest, LOL.  This is the one great picture I got of her where she didn't look sad and sick, she is with her cousin Calli.
As always I am not fancy when I plan a party, I want it to feel comfortable and easy for everyone including the kids at the party.  So I designed the theme around Halloween since Rachel was originally due to be born just a few days before and ran with the colors of Purple, Green and Orange, with touches of Black of course. We planned the party for outside and set up our 10 by 10 party tent and I talked by sweet hubby into moving our dining table outside for the party, HA.  Then because he was going to be working all day of her birthday party and arriving at the house just as the party kicked off, I decided to throw one more quirky project at him, a branch chandelier to hang under the tent.  (I wish I had taken pictures of this project in progress, but after giving the sweet man instructions and arranging the branches they way I wanted them, I trusted and walked away)  So this is how things looked all pulled together.
 I had one cupcake done in pink for the Birthday Girl.  Of  course we ended up having to put it back for us to do her special cupcake and birthday candle pictures when she is feeling a little better in a couple of days.
I picked up this cute cupcake stand on clearance two years ago for like $1 and decided it was a perfect addition to Rachel's party decor.
 I used the adorable stamps that came with Rachel's custom birthday invitations from Tom Kat Studio to create lollipop sticks to put in a few of the cupcakes as decoration.
 Here is the only view of our branch chandelier, it really looked great when it was darker.  I wish I had other views but I really did get a lot of complements on how it turned out.  It was easy to make, but I suggest you consider the shape of the table your putting it over before you assemble your chandelier.  We have an oblong table, so I took that into consideration, and I arranged my branches to go with the length of my table and still have some width, then after twining them together we wrapped them with orange twinkle lights.
 Apple Pineapple Coleslaw, perfect "design"choice for the party because it had Purple, Orange, & Green, HA . . . . . plus it was totally YUMMY!
 I should have bought more Candy Corn, because it seemed to be a bigger hit with the kids over the cup cakes . . . . . go figure.
 I picked up these cute felt Peanuts buckets at Michaels and used them to hold the pre-wrapped plastic cutlery.
 I wish I had gotten some better pictures of this area where I had the drinks set up, but I did get my beautiful Savannah Beverage Server filled with Sweet Tea looking OH SO PRETTY with my custom Halloween tag and ribbons.  In one of my other pictures above you can kind of see this area in the background with the ice bucket, water pitcher, sweet tea server, and the large pot of hot cider.
Finally, I added to the decor with these cute little lanterns that I picked up at Target for $2.50 each and had them around the party on the picnic tables and side tables, they were just to stinkin cute.
We felt so blessed to be surrounded by the first faces we saw the wonderful night this beautiful light named Rachel Elizabeth-Marie came into our lives.  Some of the people hardly knew us because we were brand new to the church, but they still arrived within hours of a phone call and stood outside of the nursery praying for our little girl OR in the corridor outside of my room waiting unsuccessfully for a chance to speak with me and instead just stood there and prayed.  Others waited until things had settled down and were there for that brief moment they rolled Rachel into my room and I got to touch her through a portal of her incubator before she was life flighted to another hospital and they got to be there for that intimate moment between mother, father and daughter where we prayed with her and I sang to her in case it was our last time.  We felt overwhelmed to know that our neighbors that we have known for years, once again saw us through the birth of another child and helped us celebrate each moment of her life from the announcement that SHE WAS to the announcement that SHE WAS HERE were among our guests.  Finally, we felt our cup overflow that once again our family loved us through a major moment in our lives and will be the very foundation of support in the life of our special daughter and they were there to help her celebrate her 1st birthday, and even though some family were absent we knew they sent their love across the miles and wanted to be there.  We had new and old friends, and family to celebrate this day and we had the peace of knowing that it was perfectly the way God would have it and Rachel had the most amazing 1st birthday sick OR not that a little girl could ever have.      


  1. I literally laughed out loud when you wrote that you don't like to do "fancy". Your party is gorgeous!! You are like Martha Stewart. I love all of the details and thought you put into everything. I may need that coleslaw recipe! I'm so glad Rachel had such a beautiful first birthday. I hope she is feeling better!

    I love how eloquent the last paragraph is. We are always praying for your sweet family.


  2. Wow, what a wonderful party and of course a wonderful story behind the precious birthday girl. I love all of the decorations and I am sure all had a blast. So sorry Rachel was under the weather though. I do hope she is feeling better now! Love the chandelier too!!