Amara's birthday party was a wonderful day. It was lovely to celebrate her first whole year of life with my Mom and the new friends we've made here in Austin. Amara, however, wasn't feeling all that wonderful. That whole week of her turning one (and ever since) was rough. Learning to walk, breaking teeth, discovering she is a whole person separate from her Momma and growing bigger by the minute is hard on a little one. That morning, she was pretty cranky and kept hitting her hand to her poor little teething mouth. When she woke from her second nap, she was greeted by lots of happy faces but didn't quite know what to make of it all! She was a little groggy at her party, maybe she thought she was still sleeping and this was all a crazy dream:)
One of the best things about the that day was meeting my new and already dear friend Hollye and her lil' blue eyed beauty. Hollye is an incredibly talented photographer who just moved her small family to Austin too. We have so much in common it's kind of freaky. We had been talking for a couple of months before we met at Amara's party. See, the Chrismans, our wedding photographers, also did Hollye's wedding. Being the awesome friends and people they are, they introduced us via email a couple of months ago because they knew that both of us made/were making the move to Austin without any family or friends. Just how sweet is Hollye? She brought her camera to take pictures of Amara's day as a gift to her! I love her photos, it was the greatest present possible. Her daughter is just a couple weeks older than Amara and they have become fast friends too!
I made chocolate cupcakes and these delicious almond shortbread cookies (the things this woman does with cookies is like, insane). I dipped them in white chocolate, adding some coconut oil to make it dippable; the coconut flavor actually tasted awesome with the almond. To make the messages, I used this World Market cookie cutter set which was a lot of fun for me:) I also made a two tier strawberry and vanilla cake using my absolutely favorite strawberry frosting from the always amazing Sweetapolita. I stamped out "Amara my Sweet" fondant letters with these cutters and sprayed and glittered them gold. For Amara's cake, I had always wanted to try my hand at edible gold leaf and this was the perfect chance:) I cut a heart out of fondant and foiled it using this tutorial as my guide. Gold leaf is so delicate and tricky to work with, I'm glad I tempered my ambition by only using it on a small portion and not applying it directly to a cake. I had a safety net because if I screwed up I could just cut out another heart. Although, I had to be careful with making sure I had enough sheets of gold for my screw ups! I LOVE the look of gold on cake.
Or gold on anything.
We didn't quite know what to do with the cake at first. She was much more concerned with whether or not I got some.
With a little help, eventually we got the hang of it! And we had our fill.
It was a sweet, sweet day ❤
Thank you to Hollye of Hollye Schumacher Photography for the beautifully captured memories!