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First birthday party themes

Sarah Caron is a Connecticut-based freelance writer and editor. She lives with her wonderful husband, two adorable kids and two funny beagles. Check out her food blog at Sarah's Cucina Bella.

Kids birthday ideas

Looking for a unique and fun birthday party theme?When the baby turns one, it's time to celebrate the milestone first birthday. But if you want a break from the ordinary to commemorate this event, then choosing a theme that is special to you or baby may be the way to go. These theme ideas should get the creative juices flowing in your head.

Baby's First BirthdayThink first birthday parties are just for the adults? Think again. The birthday boy or girl deserves a party that is special for him or her – and not just because of the cake and being showered with kisses. The party should definitely be fun for adults, but make it special for the special birthday baby too.

Here are some themes that will do just that.

think outside the box

What is your baby into? Perhaps music always gets him up and moving or the sight of flowers makes her giggle with glee. Whatever it is that makes your baby happy can be a great theme to celebrate the first birthday.

When it came time to plan the birthday party for Mike Ogilvie's son, Mike said the theme was no question: Bubbles. "He loved to watch bubbles that you blow, on t.v., in the bath, whatever. It wasn't too hard to make the theme that way. Of course get lots of blow-bubbles for all the kids (and adults), you can even cut out bubble shapes. Balloons naturally fit," says Mike, of Pendulum, Inc. (www.PendulumSolutions.com).

Mike's daughter was into blankets, so he considered a blanket themed party. Ultimately though, he and his wife went with a different theme since the blankets were harder to translate. "I really regret that. It would've been more fun for her and I think more memorable for everyone else, too," says Mike.

Hint: If your kids would like a party like with an unusual theme, think outside the box. In the case of blankets, there are many ways you could use them – as decorations, giveaways or even as the things people sit on. For instance, in the summertime, have guests bring a blanket to sit on while enjoying a picnic party. In the winter, through a mid-day slumber party and have guests cozy up around the living room.

Make it memorable

Chances are your baby isn't going to remember their first birthday party, but that doesn't mean you can't create something to help them connect with it later on.

One way you can do that is by having a photo mat for guests to sign with a special message for the birthday baby. Attach pens to a board for easy access and use it to mat a picture of your guy or gal on their first birthday.

Another way to create a lasting party momento is through a time capsule, suggests Lisa Kothari of Peppers and Pollywogs (www.pepperspollywags.com), a web-based kids party planning business. "Guests are asked to bring a news headline, sports score, weather report, or other timely pieces, for the parents to place into a special box to be opened at one of the child's future birthday celebrations. It will be cool for him to open it up and see what was going on during that special first birthday," says Lisa.

going green

Going green is everywhere, so why can't it invade your baby's first birthday party too? Take a cue from your new natural cleansers and pay attention to the environment by planning an environmentally-friendly party.

That's what Cate O'Malley (www.sweetnicks.com) did when she planned her daughter, Madeline's, first birthday party earlier this year. Cate swapped in cloth napkins for paper ones and repurposed items from around the house to make a festive party. Cate says that although the party decorations were decidedly monkey focused (that's Madeline's favorite animal) she also wanted the party to have less impact on the environment ... so that Madeline could have a brighter future on a clean planet.

Mom Krista Watterworth Alterman (www.kristawatterworth.com) is also planning an Earth-friendly party. In her case, the party will have an Earth theme when her son turns one in July. Krista has asked guests to come armed with recycling or global warming stories. In the invite, she also specified that gifts should be green too. "If you'd like to give a gift, please donate to the World Wildlife Fund (www.worldwildlife.org) in honor of Griffon... or bring our bouncing baby boy your favorite toy or gift made of wood, paper or recycled materials," she wrote.

Tell us: Share your birthday themes and ideas with us! Comment below!

For more kids birthday party tips:

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