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December 18, 2013

Emma's 2nd Birthday | Cookie Decorating & Family Party

Two years ago, we were at Emerson Hospital in Concord, getting ready to bring Emma home - I can't believe it.  Time flies.  If I try really hard, I can still feel what it felt like the instant she was born.  So surreal.  

For her birthday, I wanted it to be a day (ok... weekend) that would be all about her favorite things.  It started with a whimsical morning of snowflake balloons, a doll house and glittered packages.  I invited her cousins and aunts to decorate Snow Day themed sugar cookies that morning, then we had the rest of the family for dinner that night for a casual night of pasta and cupcakes.  After dinner the girls took horse-drawn carriage ride to look at Christmas lights.  It was such a great weekend filled with thrills for Emma - and Mom and Dad.


I wanted her be surprised when she woke up and came downstairs, so I picked up some balloons to decorate - clear 16" balloons with silver glitter inside.  I had last minute inspiration to hang snowflakes (paper-source, $5) from the streamers, when I saw the chance of snow in the overnight forecast.   It took about 5 minutes and completely delighted her.  She had the sweetest little smile on her face when we carried her in the living room.

Mr. Darcy is more interested in the packages than Emma.

She skipped right past the doll house and packages to gather all of the snowflakes.  This has me rethinking my plans for Christmas gifts... maybe just a room full of balloons?

She did love the glittered packages - "Pixie Dust" wrapping paper.  (Paper-Source)

Back to gathering snowflakes!

Her new "dollies" got her attention!

Emma spies her....


Everyone was shocked to find out that Mike and Emma made the cupcakes.   They made the cake part the night before while I had fun picking up my party supplies.

I frosted them with a pale pink frosting, topped them with sanding sugar and an "Emma's Room Pink" (of course) Celebration Candle.

We made "homemade" cinnamon rolls the night before, let them rise overnight and baked them while we opened her packages.  Here is waits patiently in her gingham cookie decorating apron (Pottery Barn Kids) and party hat.

I put together a quick centerpiece for the table while Emma put her party dress on.  Magnolia leaves, cedar sprigs, white hydrangea...

And a really beautiful white Amaryllis.  I love using Amaryllis in a cut arrangement.  This stem of 4 blooms was $12 and worth every penny.  Last year, I did 3 pale pink Amaryllis for Emma's Birthday, also with magnolia and cedar.

A simple table with preserved topiaries, candles and my flowers.

My Birthday Girl and her dollies.

We invited Emma's cousins and aunts over to decorate Snow-y Christmas Cookies.  I wanted the girls to have fun with the cookies, but I wanted them to be "pretty" as well, so I opted for a couple of colors of icing, then three different types of white sprinkles.  The snowflake sprinkles were definitely the most popular.

I had boxes, ribbon and tags ready to go for packing up cookies for everyone to take home.

I used my Snow Day themed cards - I love them because they are holiday-ish, but not too Christmassy, since this is Emma Birthday.  I think they'll be fun in January, too, to take treats around to neighbors on a snowed-in day.

Patiently waiting to decorate...

She had to go back and check out all of the sprinkles one more time.

She decided she would practice and pretend while she waited.

Emma and her cousin Sam starting on their cookies.  I can tell this is the first one, because sprinkles and icing soon covered every surface in sight.

Emma had a signature one blob of blue, with a few sprinkles.

Sam had a signature giant pile of icing covering every morsel of cookie, then completely covered with snowflakes.

Kate is still working on her technique.  Mostly licking.

Here are some of their works of art, with a few of mine in "kid-style" to fill in the gaps.  Beautiful!

Gramp Gramp and the two youngest girls... both babies just last year.

Uncle Josh & Claire joining in on the fun.

We had our own concert with Emma's new set of instruments.   She's really going to town with her "trumpet."

Such a great weekend and filled to the brim with fun for Emma and great memories for us.  Happy Birthday to our sweet Emma.


  1. Wonderful pictures that capture your adorable daughter on her special day. I love the fact that you show how a low key birthday party can be beautiful and memorable.

  2. Jenny these pictures are gorgeous. I love how you make everything so perfect and practical. Simple yet beautiful! That doll house, her dress, the cupcakes - love it all! Thank you for sharing your style with us.

  3. I just discovered your blog! I also have a little Emma who will soon be 2! Love love the dollhouse where did you get it?

  4. Happy Birthday to Emma.
    I love the snowflake idea on balloon streamers.

  5. Love every bit of detail. Happy birthday beautiful Emma. Thank you so much for sharing this with us.

  6. Beautiful pictures, beautiful baby girl. Thank you for sharing! Happy 2nd birthday, Emma!

  7. Beautiful post. She is adorable... now where is the little plaid dress from? I've checked all my resources and can't find it... Precious!

  8. What a perfect way to enoy your daughters birthday with family doing things that you all love. These are the times that memories are made of. Happy Birthday to Emma!

  9. Happy Birthday Emma, where did you get her dress, i love that pattern.

  10. HAPPY BIRTHDAY EMMA! what a sweetie :)

  11. Purchased two sets of the cookie cutters, 1 for me and 1 for my daughter who now has her own little "emma" named Oliver .. can't wait to start cookie memories with him... thanks for sharing your sweet memories ...

    Sylvia ~

  12. So lovely Jenny! thank you for sharing!

  13. Such a cute girl! And what a fun idea with tying snowflakes onto the balloons! The possibilities are endless with them! Happy New Year!

  14. lovely, simple birthday theme for your little girl! Hope she had a wonderful birthday!
    Had a ? about the basket holding the cookie boxes, is it from Pottery Barn?


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