Last week we celebrated Phoebe’s half birthday… I can’t believe our darling girl is 6 months old! The other day I read a quote that said “The days are long, but the years are short,” and boy is that true with a baby. Some days (especially if she’s having a fussy afternoon) the hours seem to creep by…but then I turn around and we’re witnessing another milestone and I can’t believe that she has her first tooth / is starting to crawl / has outgrown yet another set of clothes. I wanted to celebrate her first sort of-birthday by hosting a little party with her grandparents and Chanel & Jenn (since they’re her “best friends” right now.) Nothing fancy – just some colorful decorations that we DIY’d in a few hours, big slices of cake and glasses of bubbly for toasting. My mom made the most luscious white chocolate & raspberry half birthday cake, which was the centerpiece of the afternoon (recipe below.) It had been way too long since I’d eaten cake before dinner! I’m realizing that becoming a mom has renewed my desire to celebrate life’s little moments and not let them pass by without fanfare, no matter how busy things may seem. There’s almost always time to put forth even just a little effort to make these types of moments special, and having this little party surrounded by the people who most adore Phoebe gave me the best feeling. Couldn’t resist sharing a few of my favorite snapshots…
Did I mention that this cake and its layers of white chocolate, lightly-sweetened whipped cream and fresh strawberries were positively to-die-for? The simple secret to making a half-cake: bake 2- 9″ layers then split in half crosswise. Stack, layering whipped cream and strawberries between the layers. (Told ya it was simple.) Chanel made the most adorable cake topper garland, using 2 striped straws and a tiny felt bunting stamped with “P-H-O-E-B-E.”
Kid-friendly place settings! We cut kraft paper into rectangular placemats, then used neon pink tape to add a border on each side. Disposable bambu plates get dressed up with decorative washi tape cut to spell “1/2.”
We cut tons of homemade confetti from sheets of pink and orange tissue paper, then folded it up and stuffed it into balloons before filling with helium. Cute, right? This is an easy party trick I have a feeling I’m going to be pulling out again and again…
Phoebe with her adoring grandmothers (my mom on the left, Adam’s on the right)… we’re so lucky to have both sets of parents in town, and I’m incredibly thankful that Phoebe gets to spend tons of quality time with them as she grows up.
Do any of you guys celebrate half-birthdays? I don’t know if I’ll go beyond this first one, but it sure was fun…and I’m always up for finding an extra excuse to party! And here’s the recipe for that cake…
White Chocolate Berry Cake
- 4 ounces white chocolate
- ¼ cup water
- 2 cups flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 cup butter
- 2 cups sugar
- 4 eggs, separated
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 4 cups fresh strawberries
for the whipped cream:
- 1 quart heavy whipping cream
- ¾ cup powdered sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ?Melt chocolate and water. Mix until smooth. Sift together flour, soda and salt. Set aside.
- ?In a mixing bowl, beat together butter, sugar, egg yolks and vanilla. Stir in chocolate. Add alternately buttermilk and flour mixture, beating well after each addition.
- Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form and gently fold into batter.
- Line the bottom of three 9 inch round cake pans with parchment paper and spray with non-stick spray. Pour batter evenly into prepared pans.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool for 15 minutes and remove cakes from pans.
- For the whipped cream frosting, beat all ingredients until stiff.
- Layer cake all over with frosting and fresh berries. Top it off with the leftover fresh berries and white chocolate shavings.
*recipe from bread winners cafe
**photos by camille