Joseph’s 1st Birthday!

Joseph's 1st Birthday Party! | browneyedbaker.com

One year ago today, I was in a hospital room waiting (quite impatiently) for Joseph to make his way into the world. It felt like the longest day, but finally, at 5:36pm, we heard him cry for the first time. It was so surreal to finally hold this tiny little baby who had been living inside of me for the last nine months; he was here and he was so perfect. My husband and I truly didn’t know what to expect – we don’t have any nieces or nephews and neither of us had ever even changed a diaper!

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However, it didn’t take long for parenthood to feel totally natural, and here we are… an entire year later!

I could have never imagined how much love, laughter, joy and amazement that little baby would bring to our lives. Watching him do something new, figuring something out, making a funny face, giggling with a full-on belly laugh… it all truly is the best thing in the world.

This past Saturday, we threw Joseph’s 1st birthday party and I wanted to share it with you!

However, it didn't take long for parenthood to feel totally natural, and here we are... an entire year later!

Joseph's 1st Birthday Party! | browneyedbaker.com

The birthday boy put on his Sunday best for the party and looked so handsome :) He’s such a little charmer!

Joseph's 1st Birthday Party! | browneyedbaker.com

I kept the decorations pretty simple, sticking with balloons and coordinated plates and napkins that had cars, trucks and trains on them (his favorite things).

Joseph's 1st Birthday Party! | browneyedbaker.com

The only “crafty” thing that I did was string this photo garland from our fireplace mantle to showcase pictures of Joseph from each month this first year. Our guests seemed to really enjoy looking at the photos and marveling at how much he has changed and grown. It’s actually still up – we keep looking at it ourselves! :)

Joseph's 1st Birthday Party! | browneyedbaker.com

Now, cakes! I decorated the big cake with a depiction of The Little Blue Truck, which is Joseph’s absolute favorite book. I wasn’t totally thrilled with how it turned out; I think if I were to do a character on a cake again (prepping for future birthdays!), I would either do it in fondant and place it on the cake, or do an outline and fill in the colors/spaces with royal icing. I think either of those options would afford me the ability to create more details with a neater look. BUT, everyone loved it regardless! I used Joy’s birthday cake recipe (scaled up to make three layers), filled it with whipped chocolate ganache (minus the espresso) and iced it with my favorite vanilla buttercream.

Joseph's 1st Birthday Party! | browneyedbaker.com

I also made a separate small smash cake for Joseph. This was what gave me the most fits! I don’t know that I’ve mentioned it here before, but a couple of months ago, Joseph had an allergy blood panel done due to some reactions that he was having, and it came back with a number of allergies, among them egg whites (which we suspected), soy, wheat and peanut (which we knew based on a horrific reaction, and what prompted the blood work). I had a heck of a time finding a cake recipe that was gluten-free AND egg-free and that actually had good reviews. I ended up switching tracks and going with a flourless banana muffin recipe, substituting applesauce for the eggs and maple syrup for the brown sugar, and baked it in a 6-inch cake pan. I wanted to avoid a ton of sugar so I frosted it in plain whipped cream and added some sprinkles. Joseph loved the frosting and the sprinkles, and I snagged a couple bites of the cake – it was actually good!

Joseph's 1st Birthday Party! | browneyedbaker.com

He was showered with gifts and toys and should certainly not be bored for many months to come!

Duke and Einstein had a great time entertaining, of course, but were tuckered out by the end of the day :)

Joseph's 1st Birthday Party! | browneyedbaker.com

We had such a fun day with family celebrating Joseph’s first year… While I’ve been feeling nostalgic and a little sad that this last year has gone by so quickly, I’m also so excited to continue to watch Joseph grow and learn, and develop even more of his own personality.

Being his mom is the best gift I’ve ever been given.

Joseph's 1st Birthday Party! | browneyedbaker.com