So how do you do a first birthday? Samuel's big day was fast approaching and, as with most of the other parental quandaries we come across, we didn't have a clue what to do. On one hand, we knew it wasn't like he would ever remember any of the festivities. But on the other, we knew that we needed to mark the occasion with some kind of fuss and photographic evidence if we are ever to expect him to take pity on us and convert his garage into a granny annexe in 30 years' time when our meagre pensions have run out and we're eating tins of supermarket own-brand cat food. Evidently a party needed arranging pronto.
We decided on an intimate soirée rather than a massive tented bash with live entertainment. This was for several reasons. Firstly, he doesn't have any friends. Secondly we don't have many friends. Thirdly, The Grumbleweeds weren't free. And, finally, given that he's a baby who's been known to have a full-on emotional breakdown when a packet of Snack-a-Jacks has been rustled in his direction, we felt that party overkill wasn't the way to go.
So we did what felt right. We bought cute dinosaur party hats. We ordered, and stuffed our faces with, Curly Whirly Cake from Konditor and Cooke (Samuel was quite taken with the frosting). We put up bunting. We called Granny K and Aunty Lucy and got them to hop aboard southbound trains to join us. The next day, we took him to visit his Granny Pat for further cake action.
As far as birthday weekends go, it wasn't half bad. A little boy with a party hat on his head, a slice of cake in his hands and all the people who love him in front of him.