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Cohen's Big Top Tent 1st Birthday Extravaganza!

I honestly don’t even know where to start….

I naturally started planning my son’s first birthday party when he was 4/5 months old. Completely normal… right? I was inspired when I found a hot dog machine, which turned into buying a cotton candy machine, which snowballed into finally coming up with the “theme” of a Circus.

My husband has always loved elephants, which we wanted to pass on to our son. So elephants have been a huge part of his life from the start. From my baby shower to his nursery it has been elephants everywhere. Planning his first Halloween was a no-brainer when I found a perfect elephant costume at my go to store, TJ Maxx for a steal! When our neighborhood announced they would be having a costume contest at the clubhouse we knew we had to go all-out. We took off running with ideas to create a traveling circus in which we all played a role in (and won). This was really the creative spark for his Circus-themed first birthday!

With the whirlwind of 1st holiday celebrations Cohen’s birthday party simmered on the backburner for a while, but once New Year came and went I realized his first birthday was quickly approaching and I had nothing done. After many panicked phone calls to my Mom we started bouncing ideas off of each other and eased into full planning mode.

My mom and sister threw me the most amazing vintage-inspired elephant baby shower I have ever seen and luckily we had saved a lot of the decorations! With her motherly foresight she knew we would be able to use a lot of it for future parties and events, including the elephant cake topper. There was no doubt that time had already come on his inaugural birthday!

In the span of 1 month we had managed what seemed like 500 trips to Michaels, Hobby Lobby, and Party City, as well as an additional million or so phone calls back and forth between me and my Mom. Late night Amazon Prime orders (thank goodness for 2 day shipping) and countless hours on the computer researching, creating invites, favor tags and signage made time go by so fast.

The Madness doesn’t stop there; it took us an ENTIRE WEEK to physically set up for his party. From turning my parents sunroom into a circus tent, to hanging every puff, lantern and ball for the intricate centerpiece, to arranging and rearranging the dessert table 10 times we stayed busy. This might seem a little crazy but I had to ensure everything was perfect!

We had friends and family come from all over Virginia, Massachusetts and even Colorado making it clear to this little boy that he is loved. I know Cohen won’t remember his first birthday and a lot of people won’t understand why I went all out for an even he won’t recall but to be completely honest it was very important to me. I want him to know how important he is to us and how loved he is by so many people as he grows up. This was a day to celebrate the incredibly awesome effect he’s already had on our lives. He will always have the pictures and our stories and home videos to share this special event with him, as he gets older. Hey, you only get a single shot at turning 1 so make it count!

…and now, the event you’ve alllllll been waiting for…. PARTY PICTURES!


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