Baby’s First Birthday Party – Baby’s First Luau

In Hawaii a baby’s first birthday is a monumental event.  It’s not unheard of for people to spend thousands of dollars on the celebration.  In ancient Hawaiian times, Babies didn’t usually make it to their first birthday so this is an event worth celebrating!

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Waikiki Beach

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We just had our son’s Baby’s First Luau.  For us it was also signifigant because we had a miscarriage just before I got pregnant with him, and we know how fortunate we are to be celebrating this first birthday.  We are not living in Hawaii at the moment, so we planned his birth to be at the end of Spring so that his Luau could be during great weather.  We also wanted to have a newborn that we didn’t have to schlep to doctor appointments in the cold.  It was a win win situation.  We had also just returned from taking our boy on his first trip home to Hawaii three days prior.  Our celebration was almost two weeks long.  Or should I say two weeks short?

Every Prince Needs a Crown!

Every Prince Needs a Crown!

The preparations began with custom invitations with a photo of the Birthday Boy  to let everyone know this wasn’t an ordinary birthday party but a Luau with lots of Aloha.   I’m a die hard vegetarian, but my husband loves the Hawaiian Barbeque so we compromised on the menu.

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Luau Menu

  • Vegetarian Enchilada’s with all the fixings, green onions, cilantro, sour cream, avocado’s, my DH home made Salsa and radishes for garnish.
  • Barbequed Spare Ribs
  • White Rice
  • Hot Dogs
  • Macaroni Salad
  • Tossed Salad with Red Leaf Lettuce
  • Tortilla Chips and more of that home made Salsa
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Vegetarian Enchiladas

Decorations

  • Tiki Torches
  • Lei’s given to guests upon arrival with a big Aloha
  • Raffia Table Skirts
  • Hawaii Decorations
  • Ukulele’s
  • Tiki Totem’s
  • Hula Girls
At one point, the party got really out of hand.

At one point, the party got really out of hand.

The Big Kids on the Trampoline

The Big Kids on the Trampoline

Fun for all ages!

Fun for all ages!

Games/Prizes

  • Basketball Hoop
  • Giant Legos
  • Tiki Pinata
  • Ballons
  • Bubbles
  • Sliding Board
  • Ball Pit
  • Grab Bags with prizes completely filling a baby pool
  • Trampoline

I think the biggest hit was between the Pinata, the Trampoline and the Ball Pit.  The kids loved it.

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The small but mighty ball pit.

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Tiki Pinata

Cake

We went with an Ice Cream Cake.  Those are always my favorite.  The baby had his own little cake with the number 1 on it.  The large sheet cake, (Which I can’t believe it but I didn’t get a picture of it!) said Hau`Oli La Hanau in rainbow colors which means Happy Birthday in Hawaiian.

Note to Mommy, "I don't like ice cream cake".

Note to Mommy, "I don't like ice cream cake".

If you are looking for a theme for your Baby’s first Birthday, a Luau is a fun theme.  It has significant meaning and is steeped in tradition.  Be sure and take lots of pictures.  I think it would have been a better idea to have had a photographer to take pictures.  My husband and I were just grabbing the camera randomly, and that didn’t work out as well as I would have liked.   We didn’t get photo’s of all of the decorations or the games, or even of all of the guests.  I think disposable cameras on each table would have been a nice way to document the day.

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Air Travel Tips When Traveling With Infants and Toddlers

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Traveling with an infant and or toddler can be difficult.  There is just so much gear to take compared to when you were footloose and fancy free without a baby.  It’s a different type of vacation once you have a baby, but still totally worth it.   The more prepared you are, the more the family will enjoy the flight.

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Pack a lunch box specifically for baby liquids. Air travel is not the way it used to be, and with all the bans on liquids you would think it would be impossible to take what you need for the baby.  Not so, TSA is much more lenient on what you can take for your baby.  As long as it is in one place, you can still take a bottle, cool packs, baby food, and medicine.

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If it is a long flight, make sure you buy the extra seat. It’s not so bad having a lap child (children under 2 years of age are allowed to travel on the parents lap) when it’s a short flight, but when the flight is long no one is happy.  The best configuration is three seats in a row with an adult on each side and baby in car seat in the middle.   The car seat is also the safest place for a child to ride.

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Be sure your car seat is FAA approved. If it is, you will see a label on the side of the car seat marked that the car seat is approved for aircraft.

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Nurse or give the baby a bottle to drink during take off and landing. This will help the baby’s ears to equalize and pop with the change in altitude.  If you are unable to do either of these, at the very least make sure the child is eating something.  The chewing and swallowing will help the child’s ears to pop.  Older children can chew gum to achieve the same effect.

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Dress the baby comfortably and bring a change of clothes. Pajama’s are the best for a long flight.  Flying is uncomfortable for children so their clothes shouldn’t be.  Be prepared for the aircraft to be hot and or cold.  Layer the baby and bring a blanket because you never know what the cabin temperature will be.  You will probably be racing through security and the airport and become extremely hot until you board the plane.  You can always add layers once you get on the plane.

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For an infant, inquire about a bassinet when buying your tickets. Some aircrafts are equipped with bassinets that attach to the wall of the aircraft.  It’s really nice for a baby to be able to lie flat to sleep.  The area with the bassinets are also usually on the bulkhead which has the most leg room.

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Bring lots of snacks! Don’t ever rely on airplane food for yourself or the kids.  If the airline you are flying serves food, think of it as a bonus not a meal.

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Offer the child lots of fluids, before, during and after the flight. Flying causes dehydration.  It’s important to keep your baby or toddler hydrated as much as possible.

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Pack wisely. Do not bring all kinds of things you may or may not need.  After you finish packing go back through your bags and remove as much as possible.  Keep your bags light, the baby and all of his gear is heavy enough.  As a general rule, I try to remove one third of what I packed.  You can always buy what you need when you reach your destination.

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Bring toys, but don’t go overboard. Bring some small toys and a comfort item for the child, but don’t bring big noisy toys they will annoy the other passengers and take up too much space.

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Take the red-eye. If you fly at night, your child can sleep the entire flight, hopefully you can too.

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Don’t sweat it if your baby cries. Most airlines do provide in inflight entertainment, passengers have the option to wear head phones.  Flying can be difficult for a child and you will need to just go with the flow.

Happy Mothers Day!

I really like Mothers Day.  It’s a good day to feel like Queen for the day.  I think I’m the frugal queen though.  Here is our plan for the day:

  • My husband and I are taking the baby swimming at the YMCA.  It’s his first time ever!
  • I got a coupon for a free panty at Victoria’s Secret so I’m going to cash in on that.
  • This weekend is free HBO and Cinemax weekend at DirecTV, so while baby naps hubby and I are going to laze around and watch movies.  I DVR’d a few too, so we should have a pretty good assortment to choose from.

How are you going to spend your Mothers Day?

Destination Maternity’s Expert Advice Area

If you are like myself, you have many questions about being a Mother. I just received an e-mail from Destination Maternity about their Expert Advice Panel.

Destination Maternity’s Expert Advice Area

We’ve put together a team of top experts on topics new moms need to know about…..like Labor and Anesthesia, Relationships, Work-Life Balance, Infant and Child Development, and more.

Here, you can read frequently asked questions or ask a new question of your own. You’ll even get an email back when our expert answers your question!”

 

It looks like a terrific resource for Pregnant Women, Expectant Fathers, Fathers and Mothers. You can check it out HERE.