Making Life a Party: Bear Themed First Birthday Party



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HOT DAMN! I cannot CANNOT express to you how much I love this adorable Bear Themed First Birthday Party by Courtney Dahl. If you will recall I was trying really hard to do a weekly (HAHAHA) series of parties I love, but so much more than that, I wanted to feature people who are making their LIFE a party! Because one of my mantras for 2015 is: Make your life the party you don’t want to miss!

So this is installment #2 of “Making Life A Party!” and I’m super excited to share it with you.

This series is about fun, functional parties that yes, look good, but most importantly have ideas that are easy to adopt and use for your future events.

Read more about the series here!

There are lots of beautiful parties out there, so let me tell you what I think makes this one especially great:

1. I love how many easy activities Courtney planned for the kids. She has a book nook, coloring pages, a DIY trail mix bar, a bean bag toss. All of these things are simple, add to the decor of the party, and don’t create a lot of waste after the party.

2. A playful yet elevated aesthetic: this party is for a 1-year-old, and it looks like it! However it’s chic and modern and you know KNOW I’m a sucker for black and white.

3. Courtney is a talented videographer and photographer, so I like how she is up front and honest in the interview that pretty pictures were important to her! That’s not a bad thing! But you can also tell that this event was one that people felt comfortable at and was appropriate for the close-knit group that was invited.

4. Um, DUH It was held at my events space Club Alison! MUHAHAHA! But really, I was GIDDY to see how Courtney transformed the space. I love love love seeing a party there I didn’t do! (You can see more parties held there here.)

Ok! Now I’m so excited to share more pictures with you and a fun interview with Courtney!

1. Tell us about yourself!
Oh hey! I’m Courtney, but you can call me Ceebee. I’m a mom by day, to a handsome little dude Oliver, and a crafter by night. My mom is basically Martha Stewart and so I have creativity running through my veins. When I see something I like, I try to make it instead of buy it. From building furniture to drawing on chalkboards, I love it all and will attempt it all! I’m a big thrifter and love finding good deals on everything. I’m a photographer and wannabe videographer mainly capturing my growing boy so I don’t miss a thing!


2. Tell us about this party! What prompted you to throw it? 

My little boy was turning one and so we threw him a “bear bash”! From time to time we call him Ollie bear, so it seemed fitting for a bear bash. I wanted the party to have a modern look with mainly black and white in the color scheme, with anything wood and outdoorsy as well.


3. How comfortable are you throwing parties? Is this something you love to do or kind of fear?
I truly love throwing parties. Every detail excites me, even if it calls for some midnight crafting sessions! It’s fun to be able to be in control and bring your ideas and visions to life! I’m going to soak up these first few birthday party years where I can pick the themes.

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4. What was your main goal for the event?
As a photographer I plan for what will look good behind the lens. I wanted this party to be picturesque, creative, and fun for all the guests.

5. Share your favorite part of hosting a party, and your least favorite part.
My favorite part of hosting, is all the planning. I’m all for the details,  finding fun concepts or ideas that are new and different. Seeing everything come together and watching the guests enjoy and admire those tiny details makes it all so worth it. My least favorite is when the party ends. It all goes by way too fast, and the day of the event is always so hectic.

6. Were there any catastrophes or obstacles you had to overcome? 
Haha I somehow I forgot to bring the bag that had all the plates and forks in it… Only did we realize when we went to serve cake. Oops! But we still sliced it up, served on napkins, and ate with our hands. The cake was too good not to enjoy and share! No one seemed to mind too much. My advice is to keep everything for your party in one giant box. Each time you buy something for the event, put it right in the box. That way you won’t make my mistake, and you’ll save time running around the house trying to find everything the day of the party.



 7. What will you remember most about this day? And what do you think your guests or guest of honor will remember most about this day?
I know my son wont remember this day at all from memory, but I am so happy we have photos to show him of how special this day was. How many people were there to celebrate him, and hopefully he thinks i’m a cool mom for going all out!


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8. What’s something that made your party awesome, that someone else could do for their own party?
I made a lot of the decor myself. I wanted there to be a lot of photo worthy wall displays that people would want to take pictures by. I made a lot out of things out of cardboard that I got FREE from Ikea.





9. As an incredible photographer & videographer, what is your game plan for capturing the moments at personal &/or public events?  What projects are you working on now and are you accepting clients or booking sessions?
Things definitely changed for me since becoming a Mom. Oliver comes first, and I want to spend majority of my days with him. So I stopped photographing weddings, and right now I am only taking on editorial shoots for blogs, companies, and lifestyle products. Currently, I am working with Nena & Co, photographing and creating mini videos of their dreamy products, and I’m loving it! Something I would like to take on is creating more videos. I’m having a fun time learning the video world and I would love to do more with that. Documenting baby and kid’s birthday parties would be a blast!


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10. If your party had a theme song, what would it be?
I wish I knew a cool bear song, so I would have to say Uptown Funk. We had a mini dance party to that song. How could you not?



DIY trail mix bar


11. What’s one way you try to make your life a party?
The best part of parties is how fun they are. So I want to make life FUN. Each day is a little party in some way and I am going to work harder at appreciating those I am with and all the details of the day. You can turn boring things like cleaning into a party. So let’s just enjoy being alive and live each day to the fullest! We only get to do each day once, so let’s make it fun!

Thanks SO much, Courtney!! Love the party! Love you!
How amazing was that?! And Courtney even offered all her sources for you guys!
Want too look at more parties? See all my parties here! Or watch my video on planning any type of party regardless of budget!
Happy partying friends!
Invitations – Made in Brockton Village
Inserts – Style Me Pretty
Photography – Chantel Marie
Party hats – made by me – pattern via Oh Happy Day
Wood fabric – Ikea
Black paper trees – Pebbles in my Pocket
1 balloon – Northstar Balloons 
Tablecloth – Ikea
Table runner – Joanns
Bear coloring pages – Team ART
Colored pencils – Amazon
Felt Pennants – made by me
Cardboard bear game, big black tree, and mountains – made by me from cardboard and foam board
Wood slices, chalkboards, and jars – Thanksgiving Point

  1. Ash

    This party is adorable! I’m definitely stealing some ideas for my little man’s party in May. Thanks for sharing!

    1. yes! so glad you like it! so many cute things, right?!

  2. Tanner Winnie

    That’s my Sis! And cute nephew! Party was great, Courtee!

  3. Yes! This is exactly what I’m doing for my twin boys first bd. so many great ideas

  4. bethany

    where did you find the adorable Bear cake topper?

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