1st Birthday Party: A Ladybug Picnic for Alexa Anne

When our little lady turned the big 0-1 (thats…one, when you’re trying to sound cool) we celebrated in true ladybug style. From black spotted everything to a ladybug topped cake, this blistering hot July day will go down in infamy as one great 1st birthday bash!
We bought our tiny thing and adorable little summer dress with straps that tied at the shoulder and a puffy little bodice covered in the star insect of the day. Did someone call for triple digit temps and a high percentage of relative humidity? Yeah, it was too hot to wear anything but a swimsuit.

Luckily we’d prepared some icy drinks for those who braved the heat (which was pretty much everyone we know and love, bless them!) iced lemon water, and pink lemonade. In retrospect, I wish we’d added a few drops of red food coloring to that lemonade or gone with cherry kool-aid in keeping with our color scheme. With maybe some sliced strawberries (an excellent ladybug themed fruit wouldn’t you agree?) BUT that’s why my husband says I have “color issues”…so I can sit around regretting the color of the punch at our daughter’s 1st birthday party a whole year later…c’est la vie! I snipped the ends of red & black licorice to make some “ladybug straws”.

Ahhh the ladybug grub! (are you getting sick of that word yet??) 2 six foot tables covered in red plastic & black confetti spots with one stack of giant ladybug spots for dining ware. (for sturdy solid colored paper goods, Party City is the place to go. Trust me, I looked everywhere to find a good deal and when you consider shipping, you should just ditch the whole thing and go with PC. A dollar store is also a good place but not if you’re looking for sturdy.)


Food included BBQ Chicken sandwiches with guest’s selection of “sweet” or “spicy” meat, potato chips, the best ever potato salad, my mom’s famous Manhattan Deli pasta salad, freshly sliced watermelon (although a non-seedless one woulda been better eh?) and more.

71195720efbf17016b9d875970eb6027CAKE! This happens to be me and hubbsy’s specialty. However I was so caked-out at this point that I was all about making a couple batches of cupcakes and calling it good (ever hear the one about the doctor’s wife always being sick?) but super dad stepped in and entirely by himself made this masterpiece of a cake. Read more about it here. The top tier is the one our babe demolished.


We set up a few 6 foot tables but also invited guests to bring blankets for a real legitimate picnic feel. This would have been a fantastic idea if it hadn’t been so terribly hot. Those who didn’t swim gathered in the shaded areas of the tents. One of the tables was dedicated to activities for the kiddos. I found a printable ladybug coloring sheet online, printed several copies and laid out some of Lexie’s crayons. I also filled two jars with red & black beads, added some beading elastic wire (walmart!) so the little ones could make and take some ladybug jewelry.

Although a super duper flipping hot day, a pretty fantastic one. After we’d done cake and by the time we’d started presents, the sky darkened and finally let go of all that wet moisture it was holding hostage. It sprinkled a bit (the kind of rain us Arizonans revel in) and then by take-down time we had some full-on showers. Exactly the kind of day Lexie was born on…a perfect reminder of an even more fantastic day 🙂


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