So my blog became a tad bit quiet from the last post that I made since there has been no events to style with. Today, while I was browsing my Facebook, I came across a good friend’s comment on a photo of myself and my daughter to make a blog about the things I did for her First Birthday.
And then it hit me. How could I ever forget that day? Oh I still remember all the effort we put into that and the late nights of googling and searching for pegs to put it all together. Thus, I got up from my bed on this lazy, rainy afternoon and realized that I should have done this months ago… I’m hoping that you’ll learn something from this blog and how a mother’s love can move mountains (exaggerated para intense. hahah) 🙂
Before I start, I would like to share to you guys that her birthday was featured in Baby and Breakfast, a very popular blog in the Philippines. They feature events for babies and kids that specifically focus on Filipino talents. I’m a very proud Momma since we are the first to be featured that came from Cebu and as for the very talented photographer, Jeff of Saltandbleachit, this is his first time to submit an entry for a blog that’s famous nationwide and got featured. So this is pretty much something to brag about.. I mean, who wouldn’t? (Big smile on my face right now).
Moving on… Rhiandra’s birthday was on October 2, 2013. We decided to celebrate it on October 5, 2014 as it’s a weekend and mostly, parents of the kids that we’re inviting will surely have no work on that day. On this blog, I will list all the suppliers on that very memorable event and will focus on the itsy bitsy things that made it worth it. First off is her online invite made by yours truly.
I decided that since everyone’s on Facebook, might as well send an online invite rather than spending on paper invitations that they get to throw away right after. This is the practical mom in me speaking right now. If you ask me on how I did this, I just found a template online and edited it to her party’s info and voila! I made a cute, customized, goes-with-the-theme and most of all, FREE online invitation. 🙂
Like pre-nup photos for weddings, babies these days have pre-birthday sessions as well. What better way to commemorate their cuteness than to have it permanently printed. In this digital age, this is one of the things that I am most thankful for because I grew up and remember my mom taking photos of me and my sisters randomly and now, looking back, I am beyond amazed of the changes that we had and the fun times we used to do while growing up. This is also why I prefer to celebrate Rhiandra’s monthly birthdays into monthly photo sessions instead of cakes. Here are her photos taken by Jeff Garban (click link for his own blog post of this shoot here).
There were 4 set/outfit changes. All were styled by me. Venue: Cafe Caw.
Words would not suffice for me to describe how awesome these shots are and these are only just a few. Jeff captures candid and authentic photos. That’s what I really like most about his work. He’s also very patient with kids and that’s a great deal to moms like me because we know time is of the essence for these photographers but he doesn’t see it that way. He knows that shooting a baby takes time and that’s what he just did to get these effortless, timeless shots. I vividly remember this day, that Rhirhi had to take a nap break for an hour but Jeff never had to complain about it. We just ate our breakfast and talked about things we both can relate to.
THE PARTY DETAILS
Personalized. This is how I pictured her party to be like. Though it may seem very small, details in parties really does matter. Like this personalized bottles for each guest at the party. I had to literally get drunk with Sola along with my family and friends just so I can collect 108 bottles in total for this to be put in reality.
What I did (together with my minions aka sister and Rhirhi’s yaya) were: sterilize them clean, dry them, cover them and keep thoroughly so no dust could come in contact because we can’t design them too early. Then we’d do this all over again for the next batch or set that we collect. When the week of the party came, that’s when I started decorating them. Attaching the paper doilies, print and cut the labels, glue gun the lace.. and on the night of the party was the easiest part.. To put juice in each and everyone of them. Gosh! Totally time consuming, but when I saw it displayed on each of the guests’ table.. It sure made a smile on my face because it looked so adorable and made a wonderful detail on the party. Some of my guests expressed their appreciation on the juice bottles and they preferred to bring them home because they find it “too pretty” to open and drink. By then I knew, the effort was totally worth it.
The following are more personalized details of the party:
For the loot bags, I made 45 pcs of these. Each were individually placed with paper doily, cut the tags into circles, punched holes to place the jute string as ribbons. Inside were random fun stuff that we used to enjoy as kids like plastic balloons, imported chocolates, bubbles, pencil, puzzle, and candies. All are by the way, color-coordinated (Blue for boys, Pink for Girls). 😉
For most parties, they would take this off their customize-list as this is not really important but for me, little things matter. I personally wrapped these wooden spoon and fork (talk about eco-friendly and safe for the kids) into cute ribbon-shaped napkins, and wrapped a washi tape to hold them together. This also matched the pink and blue polka dot paper plates and cups (not on photo). With so many things in mind, who would think to personalize this? Well I did! This was quite easy as I only needed to print a huge sticker and covered the front part of the pinata (…only to be ripped in a second. I know, I know.)
Yes, even the pabitin didn’t get away with my OC-ness. Had this cheap, bamboo pabitin originally wrapped in gold foil. I transformed it by covering with pink, white and blue crepe paper just so it would go with the theme’s color scheme. I also chose the prizes that were placed in it. How can I forget these? Made them for an entire day (along with taking care of Rhiandra in between). Jeza (her yaya) and I tediously cut the letters in wrapping paper to cover each of the 3D Paper mache letters of Rhiandra’s name. This was displayed on her dessert buffet. It added a more personal touch, do you agree? 🙂 Now onto the most awaited part.. the venue. Many of you who were able to read the article from Baby and Breakfast asked if I literally did everything. Well if I had 10 sets of hands, why not? Of course I needed stuff to be done and executed. If I could, I would actually do everything but it’s just not possible. As the mother of the celebrant, I had to take care of myself too. Getting ready with a toddler is a bit challenging, you know. That’s why we had to be in the venue at 7:30am to get settled and started (the party started at 11:30am). It’s a plus that they have a VIP room that clients can rent for dress up for the party. At least we had a place for Rhirhi to rest or play while waiting for the time. I also needed to go early to beat the traffic and of course, I had to do the supervision that everything is in proper order before everyone arrives. So I hired the expertise of Ms. Therese Noynay of TLC (Talamban Leisure Center) just so I’ll have a helping hand in achieving the theme for Rhirhi’s birthday which was Floral Shabby Chic. I specifically showed her photos from how I would want it to look like and provided minute but significant details. Here’s the entrance:
The stage. This is the highlight of the party. I can’t thank Ms. Therese enough for making the fences because I specifically wanted them to be on the stage. The ceiling drapes were provided by TLC but the balloons, pompoms and lanterns were all provided by me. The “ONE” in the middle of the stage was used on Rhiandra’s music video (which you can watch here) and I’ve decided to incorporate it in the party. Those are the letters O, N and E that I took from her puzzle mat. Took out each letter, covered it with wrapping floral paper, and glued it to a cartolina-made paper fan. Easy-peasy but looks classy 😉
I also wanted to have a mini memorabilia but the small space in the venue makes it impossible to happen so I decided to incorporate it on the stage. I provided the monthly photos hanged on the fence and the frames on the table. The 3ft. letters that spelled Rhiandra’s name were made by TLC according to my instructions.
Next would be the amazing dessert buffet by the pretty sisters, Janden and Janis of Itsy Bitsy Cakery and Decors. They literally went out of their way and exceeded my expectations and created this really unique and pinterest-worthy dessert buffet. The guests loved it as well. Many took their photos with this as their backdrop (talk about dual purpose).
To those who know me personally, they know that I’m a sucker for mushy stuff and one of my fave things to do is making AVPs. Even when my husband and I were still dating, I used to make some for him as a way to surprise him on special occasions. Rhiandra’s birthday surely was not an exception. Her ninangs actually reacted because the program seemed like it was a debut due to many audio-visual presentations. Though I know it was a joke, we all know that jokes are “half-meant” but it’s all good. We all had a good laugh. I just want to look back and share to everyone how blessed we are for having her in our lives. Here are the links of the AVPs in her party:
Welcoming Rhiandra – this is a video on how she came to life, when I was pregnant with her till her delivery.
Watch Me Grow – her monthly photo sessions in a slideshow.
365 Days of Rhiandra – a compilation of her videos, milestones in a form of a letter. I hope for her to read this one day and appreciate everything we’ve done for her.
Oh yes, I did the flow of the program. Not only that, I made an AVP for one of her games which is facts about Rhiandra. I prepared 15 questions and whoever answers them correctly, gets a prize. It’s a good way to keep the early birds entertained while waiting for the other guests to arrive. I also had to plan for the games and even the music. I compiled it all by myself. I remember Jeff asking me if who chose the music and I said, I did.. He said, it’s very nice and theme-appropriate. 🙂
This can be seen on the Baby and Breakfast (link above) but I’ll have to place them here for easier access:
Rhiandra’s Dress: Barbie Alvez Calunod
Rhiandra’s Head Dress: Christianne and Ivy of Sugar Kissed II
Host: Em Em Abutanmo
Venue/Catering: Talamban Leisure Center (TLC)
Coordination: Therese Noynay of TLC
Planning, Styling, AVPs: Mommy Ria
DIY Team: Rhinna Marie Epe and Rhiandra’s Yaya (Jeza)
Cake & Dessert Buffet: Janis and Janden of Itsy Bitsy Cakery and Decors
Entertainment: Magic Illusionist from Hannah’s Party Needs
Photos: Jeff Garban of Saltandbleachit
Video MTV: Lloyd and Khristine Seco-Bazar of ConceptEight Media-Events
Printables: Reylanand Dyan Daphne Dy-Gayas
To end this blog, I’d like to say thank you to everyone who made this birthday a success. To our relatives and friends outside the country who contributed for her party, thank you so much. Now, I’d like to leave you with the fun photos that are the only proof of all the hard work I did together with my minions. I’m happy with how it all turned out and as exhausting as it is.. what’s more rewarding is that your own husband congratulates you and tells you that you did a great job. That’s good enough for me.