Tristians First Birthday
31 August 2013
Category: Children , Family , Kids Parties | Posted: 24 October 2013
❤ Tristians First Birthday ❤

Aoife is a very dear and special friend of mine! I photographed her maternity shoot and her baby shoot of Tristian when he was just 8 weeks old.
Myself and Ricky spend alot of time with Aoife, Leon and little Tristian and we always cherish time spent with them!
They are such a wonderful and amazing family and we feel honoured and blessed to call them friends!

So on the day of little Tristians birthday party, I did a little family shoot for them before the party started, and then took photographs of the gorgeous decor and celebrations! Aoife has such a beautiful way with words, so below is a beautiful description of Tristians first birthday party celebration written by Aoife herself:

"My dream was to create a very special birthday celebration for our son Tristian, to create something that when Tristian is older he could look back on and think:
"wow they did that for me" and feel the abundance of love we have for him. I also wanted to show that a full-time working mom "CAN DO IT AND MORE TOO".

My inspiration behind the decor and theme was: "TIME PASSING"
Using words to capture the emotions, dreams, beliefs and wishes for our angel during the first year of his life.

It all really started with the chalk board that I had seen on Pinterest. However after searching high and low, posting after posting, no one could give me direction as to where I could pick one up, so I went about doing it myself. I spent a couple of weeks having fun with this, choosing and creating the words and I loved the end result.
So much so it became the anchor piece around which everything else was crafted.

I went for a very natural palette with little bits of old school and earthy elements. I found little wooden knives and forks and customized them with brown and white polka dot washy tape to match the bun/cupcake cases. I wanted to get little flags for the buns also but couldnt find any that matched, so I crafted them at home on Photoshop, printed them out and got stuck into the scissors and the glue! I also wanted to bring in some yummy kiddies treats, so I had coconut covered marshmallows on sticks and popcorn. I handmade these little wrappers for the popcorn flavours and the popcorn itself.

My friend Melissa gave me the heads up regarding the lemonade. Her advice was to keep it simple, equal amounts of lemon juice to sugar, melt, then just add water to taste when ready to drink. Decorate with mint and lemon segments. Yummy and looked great too. Went down very well with the adults and kids alike.

So the UNWRITTEN RULE about a first birthday... second to the birthday boy himself... it is ALL about the adults!
Thank God for my mom, my amazing friend Justine (who doesnt have her own cafe but should!) and the ultimate cake-maker Melissa.
My mom and I made mini caramelized onion tartlets, leek and goats cheese tartlets, bacon and feta quiches, and these crafty little tomato and onion crostinis which are a must for any party (Barefoot Contessa Recipe - have a search!). My friend, Justine arrived with sticky soya chicken and sesame balls, mini mexican wraps, little velvet cupcakes and pancake stacks with strawberries cream and maple syrup. We had a selection of crackers and cheeses, breads with a selection of dips, and fruit.

The cupcakes were Made by Mel, and as delicious as they looked no words or picture could describe how these chocolate cakes tasted with the surprise Lindt ball inside. The cake was a delicious vanilla sponge cake with vanilla ganache.
I didnt want the cake to be just delicious and beautiful, I wanted to make it very personal to Tristian. I wanted to communicate the joy of being a mom, being blessed with this priceless treasure, and I wanted to share that joy in words. I keep a book of our memories since the day he was born from which I extracted some of that sentiment and added to it all that I was experiencing around this special first birthday. I will put it below for all mothers whom I believe share in this joy. Melissa crafted this around the cake so beautifully, and together we invented the "willowbridge piece" for the cake topper, which I LOVED because I collect the real willow-bridge pieces.

We kept the "word" theme alive by asking everyone to write their wishes and blessings for Tristian on pieces of card that had little sentence starters for them to fill in. After the party we sat down and read these... some made us laugh so hard, others made us cry.

The kiddies left with cute little packages, with little treats inside. My mom and I made these boxes one night again with our fiend the scissors, glue and straw.
I had developed these myself with a tree on the side signifying growth/ time passing and the words:
"Once in awhile, right in the middle of an ordinary life, love gives us a fairytale".
I thank God everyday for the blessings of love, laughter, health and peace he has so abundantly showered over my life with our son, my husband, our families and friends.

All in all it was a fantastic day! It was such fun on the lead up to it and seeing it all come together on the day was magical. I am so grateful to all those who helped make the day all that it was. Thankfully, the beauty of it all, is further captured by our beautiful friend Claudia, who so discreetly and sensitively captures the magic of it all. Sometimes I look back on our shoots and think... was it really THAT beautiful? Really? And that is where the gift of the artist on hand shines full glory, our Claudia.
You are blessed my friend, in your warmth and gentleness, your purity and yet your professionalism. You have a definite gift from God for photography and capturing the intimate magic that so often others miss. Thank you for being with us on our day and always!


My Darling Son, On Your 1st Birthday

Years have come, years have gone, but none more precious than this last one.
I cannot believe the time has passed so fast, since the day you came onto this world. It feels like only yesterday when we first heard your voice!
That beautiful cry you called out to the earth, and the moments of silence after as we held you close.
You were so welcomed, we knew you a second and we loved you.

That moment changed my entire life. I never knew a love like that before. There is no other love like it, like the one I have for you my son.
It was a single moment, but weighed the world in joy. It was the moment where the meaning of my life was realized, when the future was painted before my eyes.
I am so eternally grateful to our Father for this blessing, this blessing I was given when He gave us you.

I reflect as if it were yesterday, and yet it was a whole year ago. It makes me emotional to think where this time has gone, what is its hurry and why can it not slow down. Every moment of this journey has been special, every moment of this journey treasured. I think back of how vulnerable you were, dependent.
I observed those precious eyelids flutter open and closed. I used to watch those beautiful little fingers move so gently, so fragile. How they would explore around their own space, slowly, so delicate. I loved to hold you as close as possible against me, so you could hear my heart, so I could hear you breath. Your lips were so defined and even when you cried I just wanted to kiss you. I would spend hours just sitting with you running my hands through your hair, my face against your perfect skin. I often found it so hard to get up and walk away from you, even though you were sleeping.

You were always so alert, looking around, and loved the rafters. You knew our voices and Bearkie from very early and together we loved just watching you, holding you, helping you to grow. We would spend hours thinking about who you looked like, eye color, obsessing. And as time passed you came into your own, your first smile to your daddy, then to mommy, your first full on giggle, your eyes becoming a rich chocolate brown wide-eyed to the world. We had such intimate moments together just lying together, you dad and I with you, listening to God-worship music and 93 million miles.

Time passed, I watched when you first brought your hand to your mouth. We observed your attachment to rabbit grow, your first meal which you gulped down in a flash. Letting you go to Margarets to grow, to socialize, to learn. We prayed for love, health, for passion, for joy, and happiness in your life always, and expressed total gratitude to our great Father God for the blessing of You.

We took you for your first Guinness, in a shot glass, you loved that and of course we did too! We watched as you learned how to roll, engage with toys, to sit up alone. We enjoyed your first tickles, your first teeth and first nursery rhymes. Your first words: dada, mama. Your understanding of: light, plane, "can I tell you something", I love you, and no. I sit and watch all your favorite children"s tv shows with you, babyjake, teletubbies, peppa pig, and helped you engage and watch as you laugh and you shake your bum bum. You know now how to crawl, clap handies, high five, to climb the stairs and are almost at the brink of walking.
Our hearts light up on fire with a glance from you, that eye contact, that love. We laugh so hard as we pull you across the lawn by the dog lead attached to your little bike, the faster the more laughs... and you laugh from as far down as your toes. You love to eat, as long as those jaws are moving you are content. We wonder where you put it all, and you make us gut ourselves when you chomp your lips whenever you see food, or copy mommy whenever you put something in your mouth "umm-mh".
You my darling have been the most incredible blessing from God, there is nothing more or less of that I could have dreamed of or asked Him for when it came to a child, you are everything. I call you the Gift that keeps on giving, because every single day you give me a "once in a lifetime" moment, everyday a "best moment in my life" moment. It has only been a year and yet I feel like my life never existed without you, and since you have arrived a beautiful new future has been painted, new dreams have been created.

Reflecting on this past year, being there for your every need is my biggest pleasure. Watching you grow is my biggest privilege. Motherhood and fatherhood has been our biggest honour. And YOU have been our biggest blessing. Thinking about the year ahead we pray to God our Father for continued love, life, laughter, fun, peace, passion, purpose, friendships and time together for this your next year, and always we love you unconditionally, your Mommy & Daddy xxx"

CLICK HERE to view Aoifes Maternity Shoot and CLICK HERE to view Tristians Baby Shoot

❤ Love & Blessings ❤
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Helen Devine   26 October 2013, 10:13
I just had to comment in this wonderful collection of my wonderful friends - I am Tristians Granty Helen and living so far away in Scotland I wait for updated photographs to see this beautiful boy - well today was a treat when I saw the link to your website Claudia you have captured the complete essence of this beautiful family thank you for sharing Helen x