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Monday, October 31, 2011

the Making of a Whimsical Owl Birthday Party

I don't usually throw myself so diligently (or creatively) into party decorum preparations, but if ever there were an appropriate time in my life - it must be the 1st birthday of my baby girl! I decided on a whimsical owl birthday party theme. I have been in love with Pottery Barn's whimsical owl/woodland theme since they first introduced it, so it was the obvious choice.

Whimsical Owl invitations, hand made with love. FYI - googly eyes cost more to mail. And yes, that is their official name "googly eyes". 

I always throw myself whole heartedly into the menu planning and food preparation. Eden's party was at lunch time, so we served a meal. The menu consisted of: white turkey chili, fried sausages with bell peppers over rice, pumpkin muffins, chips with homemade salsa, a grape & banana fruit salad and warm apple cider. There was some marveling going on at the white turkey chili, so I will leave you with that recipe for the upcoming chilly winter nights. Marveling, as in, what ingredients classify chili as "white"?

White Chili
In deep pot, brown 1 lb ground turkey meat
Add 1/2 cup yellow onion, diced 
Add 1 tsp each; parsley & garlic
Add 1 can white canelli beans
Add 1.5  cups sweet frozen corn
Add 1 can green chiles
Add 1 box vegetable or chicken broth (i used veggie)
Add 1 bay leaf
Add 1 cup or more of FRESH cilantro, finely chopped stems and all. Don't be afraid of the stems, they have great flavor.
Salt and pepper to taste.

Bring to boil, and then reduce to a simmer. Let it simmer a good 20 minutes or so before eating.

Following are some close-ups of party decor:
Paper towel star art idea found at Wound Up Mom. By the way, this is my amazing cousin Annie's blog and she is full of creative goodness!

Mini pennant banner idea as seen on baby ben's 1st birthday cake at meg + andy; who are sure to inspire anyone with the slightest twinge of craftiness in their being.

The "dimensional hanging photo tulle" was Garrett's brillant idea. I used mini rolls of tulle from the craft store, cut three strips the same length, safety pinned them together at the top, and then safety pinned pictures on the vertical strips. I scotch taped them to the ceiling and it held just fine.

I wanted to hang a "curtain" of tulle as the main backdrop and it turned out exactly as I was envisioning. I hole punched the tulle, strung it with satin pink ribbon and gathered it to create the curtain effect. We hung by drilling into our cieling and slip-knotting the satin ribbon around the screws so it was flush to the cieling. And when I say I or we here, I really mean Garrett :-) He really delivered on the whole curtain thing. My only recommendation for anyone who wants to do a similar tulle curtain, would be to use several layers of tulle so it isn't so sheer and see-through. FYI - That was 3 yards of sparkle tulle used for Eden's tulle "curtain"spread across about 6 feet of length.  

the adorable {and delicious}Whimsical Owl cake, made by my talented friend Paula

I saved the best for last, the birthday girl herself with her very own zucchini cake, daloped with organic vanilla yogurt. I have made this recipe several times over as muffins, so Eden was familiar with this food and enjoyed her cake. Familiarity is a baby's friend. Notice her super cute high chair cover, it was made with love by her grandma!

As if this post isn't long enough, below are some picture of Eden....

1 comment:

  1. Great job, Alicia! I love that so many people contributed their help too with Garrett's creativity and Grandma's highchair cover. I only wish I were about 1000 miles closer so I could taste that delicious lunch. Thank you for linking up to me :) Love that sweet baby face. Happy Birthday Eden!