This conversation probably happened over 20 years ago.

  • Me: Mummy did I celebrate my first birthday?
  • Mummy: Yes you did. It was a big party.
  • Me: So, how come there are no pictures (not even one).
  • Mummy: Can you imagine, the photographer said all the negative film that he used on that day got destroyed
  • Me: Oh that’s so sad.

first birthday party for children

I’ve always believed that was the truth. But now I’m actually really wondering if it was one of those things my mum just said to me, to stop my persistent questions.

I’ll have to ring her up asap to get the true answer.

My elder brother had a huge party. With a guitar cake. In his white shirt and red shorts, bow tie and his little white and red shoes, he looked really cute – but not so happy to be there. He must have preferred to be sleeping. The other older kids at the party looked excited though. No, I wasn’t there – but thankfully, I saw pictures.

As children, most of the parties we attended, were 1-year old’s parties. We didn’t really care much for the child, and trust me in many cases the child didn’t care much for it as well. But we loved getting dressed, the games, the food (definitely the party Jollof rice!) and the party packs.

I hadn’t been to a first birthday party in ages. As a young adult, it definitely got boring for me. But now, I guess I’m at the stage where my friends are having kids and so more parties.

I’ve attended two now in the past few months. The first one was pretty huge, in a rented hall with a theme for the day. The cakes, party packs, décor – everything was so pretty. It could have passed for a mini wedding. I was tempted to collect some party packs for my unborn kids. I didn’t. Unfortunately, the poor birthday boy looked like he’ll rather be sleeping.

The second one was smaller – held pretty much in the living room. But still, cakes, party packs and amazing food were present. The poor kid again cried a lot and had zero interest. His elder sister had so much fun with his gifts!

So, in most cases we can agree that the celebrant doesn’t remember the day at all, they don’t eat the food or the cake, they don’t use the party packs, and the party is probably really not for them. Also, large parties are probably expensive. Non-advocates suggest putting the money away for the child.

On the other hand, memories are everything. We celebrate milestones and this is definitely a huge one. It’s also not just about the child but also about the parents and friends. So why shouldn’t you celebrate in a huge way?

I find that although many parents go all out for the first child, the celebrations get smaller with the subsequent kiddos.

I think I’m tilting towards small cute parties – themed, a small crowd and a professional photographer! Can’t have any child doubting my truthfulness.

Whether or not there’d be a party, I’ll definitely have a photoshoot, and/or do something cute to remember the day!

What do you think – Did your parents celebrate your first birthday party? Did you already / are you planning to celebrate that of your kids – In a big, small or moderate way?  Share your ideas… I promise I won’t steal them.

Happy Children’s Day to all the amazing kiddies out there! And to the rest of us, it’s okay to release your inner child sometimes!



read too: On Birthdays: Turning 26, Cocktails and Orchids and What are your Sibling Goals?


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. Desola

    May 28, 2016 at 02:35

    I would rather have a small party and a professional photographer. Wouldn’t want to spend so much on a party he/she wouldn’t remember.

    • Kachee ||

      May 31, 2016 at 09:43

      I definitely agree with you on this one. Thanks for commenting for the first time!! Please don’t be a stranger! xx

  2. Precious

    May 28, 2016 at 05:55

    I’m not a fan of big parties. For each child, I always do something significant. Sometimes, it’s an outing for dinner. Sometimes I just bake a cake at home and we sing and share. My ever-present means of celebration is thanking God for the them and praying blessings over

    • Kachee ||

      May 31, 2016 at 09:45

      The ultimate thing is to definitely give thanks to God!.. and if possible do something significant as well. I agree with you. Thanks Precious! and well done for that recipe on Bella Naija. It looked amazing!!

      • Precious

        May 31, 2016 at 13:06

        Awww thanks Kachee!

  3. Bababi

    May 28, 2016 at 07:07

    Oh the 1st birthday discussion. In my family, my parents hugely celebrated milestones birthdays (1 yr, 10 years, then 21 years -if you allow them). All other birthdays were celebrated in a quiet, family dinner with an unusual meal on the menu and a gift or an alert in your bank account. Personally, I’m not a fan of birthday parties so I loved the family dinners more and I didn’t permit them to throw a party for my 21st (afterall, I was now an adult and had the guts to say NO).When I do start having kids, I will continue the tradition of having quiet family dinners, gift or bank alert and only include a photoshoot for milestone birthdays. When the child becomes an adult, he or she can choose to have a huge party for his/her 21st…..huhuhaha #wickedlaughterPS: Kachi, you’re so good at this. I find myself laughing at all your blogs….and sometimes saying “ah, so no be only me dey experience this” lol. Keep up the good work.

    • Kachee ||

      May 31, 2016 at 09:52

      Ah Ah Munwa! Why didn’t you allow them to throw a 21st party biko? Did you choose to collect the money instead? Hahahaaha.I LOVE that idea of an unusual meal on the menu. Such a cool tradition! Bank alerts are forever bae.Awwww. Thank you Munwa,, you have no idea how much that means to me. I’ll come back to read this on those days I feel ‘not good enough’! Xx

  4. Nengi

    May 29, 2016 at 04:53

    We usually had big celebrations for milestones (1, 10, 21). I think the first birthdays r for the parents as much as the child. finally your baby has reached the age where (s)he gains some independence. You probably no longer have to wake up at night to feed, maybe baby is now in his own bed, etc. I look forward to having a party when BabyTee turns 1. (Not a huge party I must say. I don’t have that kind of money to throw around, lol)

    • Kachee ||

      May 31, 2016 at 09:42

      I agree with you that the birthdays are for both parties. Lol. Especially when it’s the first child. Whoooop! for BabyTee, can’t wait to his pictures on that day. Lool.

  5. Motunrayo Shafau

    May 30, 2016 at 07:29

    This made me think of my mum’s friends who would call me and ask, “Don’t you remember me? I was there at your first birthday party…” It is so unnecessary to be honest.. The smaller the better..

    • Kachee ||

      May 31, 2016 at 09:41

      Loool! No way this happened. How can you remember who was at your first birthday?? Jokes. Thanks for reading and commenting love! Xx

  6. Lohla's Melange

    May 30, 2016 at 19:53

    We had an intimate living room gathering, not more than 20 guests when our LO turned one. We also had a professional photographer who came with four attaches rme and smh. My friend if left alone wouldn’t have served them any meals lols, they were even hustling for take away packs. Anyway, it was intimate and beautiful with lots of music, dancing, eating and general goofing around. To be honest, the adults had more fun but our LO sure sensed that that day was special cos he had several changes of outfits. He cried a Lil, laughed a lot and practically buried himself in his spider man cake when he was placed there for pictures. OK I’ll stop now before I ramble any more than this.

    • Kachee ||

      May 31, 2016 at 09:48

      Loool @ 4 attaches! Please oh better 4 attaches than someone who comes with just one and then claims the pictures got missing (rme)…. I like the goofing around bit. Nothing better than spending some genuine quality happy moments with close friends/family… Awww I already pictured him trying to bury himself in that spider man cake. We love rambles on this space. Feel free!

  7. Toluwalade Toyin-Kehinde

    May 31, 2016 at 16:54

    Photoshoot yes! Party? total yes! Because i’ll most likely make it my own party (jokes) but i’m a sucker for birthday parties and it’s the first cammaaaaaan! I think when you have a yoruba mother like mine you just have to enjoy celebrating your birthday sha! I still have the pictures from my first birthday with them cakes surrounded by fanta-coke-and that back in the day grape wine hahaToyinwithfashion

    • Kachee ||

      May 31, 2016 at 16:57

      Oh my gosh! That Fanta and coke and grape wine bottles by the cake!! I totally remember and that’s hilarious! Hahahahahaa @ Yoruba mother. I was going to mention that Tee is totally all for a party. He even thinks if you can afford it KWAM 1 should come and sing at the party. You Yoruba people sha!!

  8. Chinelo Okoli

    June 16, 2016 at 14:00

    My zara had fun at her 1st birthday bash. when she was called to the dance floor, girl bust into some serious dance moves. everyone was stunned including myself. It was even funnier cos she was not walking confidently by then. But she still danced like she knew it was her birthday.Later on tho, she got tired and cranky and only wanted mummy to ‘back her’. I already started announcing on that day, that for my other kids it will be a parlour party. The stress planning and organising no be here. but we all had fun.Your mum may be telling the truth about your 1st birthday pics cos we still have not gotten our pics from my daughters party held in April. Just negodu!!! Some of these photographers are full of stories. I have a friend who has not gotten pics from her kids 1st birthday from a year ago. And that guitar cake ur broda had, was epic back in the days.Nelo’s Halo Blog

    • Kachee ||

      June 18, 2016 at 09:25

      Ohhh that’s so cute!! I just pictured her bursting some kiddie dance moves. I know what you mean by Parlour Party! LOOOOL.Just negodu these photographers biko! A whole year!! Oh i asked my mum and she said that I did have a party! Thanks for your comment Nelo! xX

  9. Tamie

    August 19, 2016 at 04:15

    I had a big party as a kid for my 1 year birthday, saw pictures. But as i grew older ,i knew i would just stick to a parlour party when i have kids…especially for the first birthday.

  10. Tessy Onyia

    October 3, 2016 at 09:06

    Oh so sorry for your pics darling. Yes o my parents celebrated mine with a massive cake because my mum bakes..and I was really happy I got to see the pics, I was just too cute then..LolWhen my first child Michelle clocked one, she is 5 now, we celebrated it for her and we did a photo book too to avoid storis that touch hehe, I spent well on that, I also did same for my boys and it was fun.Yes o ..This is the stage, you need to attend more and learn how it’s done, soon it will be your turn.Well done babe’s…