If You Give a Mouse a First Birthday Party

Wednesday , 20, February 2013 13 Comments


The Goober just had his first birthday a few weeks ago and as I posted in the pull-string piñata post, it was a If You Give a Mouse a Cookie party. For me it is always easiest to plan a party if I can find some sort of theme to guide me. I wanted to avoid the super-commercialized birthday characters, which are adorable and often easy, but perhaps a bit overdone. I tend to be drawn to literary themes, especially books with storylines or illustrations that inspire me. I would love to do a Pinkalicious cupcake party for a little girl one day!

I wanted to keep it simple and make as much as possible to keep my costs down, especially for a party that is more for the parents than the 1 year old. I searched Pinterest for ideas and also used details from the book to come up with my plan. I found illustrations from the book online, sized them in Photoshop, and printed them on cardstock to make my centerpiece. My mother-in-law had a stuffed Mouse that went along with the copy of the book she had read to her children so we also incorporated that as well. I used felt and foam board to make props for a DIY photo booth and made felt play food (milk and cookies, of course) for party favors.   I just used Ziploc sandwich bags and a cardstock label I created through Photoshop to package the treats.

Tiffany Casey of Casey Photography took the Goober’s one year photos a few days before the party (when he wasn’t quite one yet, *GASP) and I went to Staples and had one of his pictures blown up as an engineer print (for only $4) so we could play “Pin the cookie on the Mouse/Goober”. I used spray adhesive to attach it to a tri-fold display board and used some of my leftover felt to make some more cookies. I used painter’s tape to make the cookies stick without hurting the picture. Pin the Cookie was a huge hit with the kids, as was the photo booth.

I originally planned to make the cakes for the party, but time was getting away from me, so I ended up ordering the cakes from Publix (they did our wedding cupcakes a few years ago and their cake is so yummy). Publix also throws in a free smash cake for first birthdays as well, which was an awesome little bonus and the Goober seemed to enjoy it.

I did make a smash cake for his 1 year photos which was slightly lower in sugar, since I didn’t really want to give him a ton of sugar several days in a row. It was an Apple Swirl Cake that I quartered the recipe of, but still somehow ended up with enough batter to make two little cakes, one for the Goob and one for his parents to enjoy.

Since the party was at 1 pm, we had a fruit and veggie tray and a Chick-fil-a chicken nugget tray, as well as chocolate chip cookies (of course!) and PB-Banana ‘Nilla wafer sandwiches with sprinkles. The PB Banana ‘Nilla sandwiches were super yummy and easy to make. I threw together a quick 6 step tutorial which I’ll put in at the end of this post with the Apple Swirl cake recipe. And of course, I can’t forget to let you guys know how the pull-string pinata worked out! The kids seemed to like it, especially the Goober, but I did forget one important thing. I forgot to get a removable hook or something to hang it from that could withstand a bunch of kids pulling on it, so my husband had to hold the loop I made, which may or may not have briefly cut off the circulation in his hand. Oops!

I’d love to hear about your favorite birthday party themes or moments, so tell me about it in the comments. Also be sure to check out our other birthday posts here, here, and here.

Happy Birthday, Goober!


PB-Banana ‘Nilla Sandwiches

Step 1: Gather your ingredients.  You will need vanilla wafer cookies, peanut butter, a banana, and sprinkles for this easy snack.

Step 2: Spread an even layer of peanut butter (Nutella would be yummy, too) on the wafers.

Step 3: Slice the banana into ¼” slices and place on half of the cookies.

Step 4: Put the two halves together.

Step 5: Fill a bowl with sprinkles and roll the edges of the wafer sandwich in the bowl until the banana is covered.

Step 6: Step back and admire how pretty they look. Enjoy!



Apple Swirl Cake Recipe

1 c Apple (chopped)

1.5 tablespoons Sugar

1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon

1 c Brown Sugar

1/2 c Coconut Oil

2 Eggs

1/8 c Orange Juice

1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract

1.5 c Sifted Flour

1/2 tablespoon Baking Powder

1/4 teaspoon Salt


Mix together the apple, tablespoon(s) of sugar, and the cinnamon in medium bowl and set aside. In a large bowl, combine the sugar, oil, eggs, and vanilla and beat. Add the flour, baking powder, and salt and mix until batter is smooth. Pour into 2 6″ round baking tins and bake at 350*F for 35-45 minutes or until toothpick comes out cleanly.

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  • joy says:

    where did u get number one by centerpiece?

  • Allie says:

    I got the letters at Michael’s for $1.99/each.

  • Jamie says:

    Looks like a great party! Love all your ideas!

  • Wendy says:

    Cute ideas and cute birthday boy!

  • Allie says:

    Thank you, Wendy and Jamie!

  • Louise Sheftall says:

    What a thrill to see the birthday boy and all the fabulous decorations! The talents in this family are overwhelming!

    Joyce is a MIGHTILY proud grandmother and rightly so.

    Louise Sheftall
    Augusta, Georgia

  • Mary Ellen says:

    What a wonderful description of your little Goober’s big day!

  • megan says:

    What a great theme! All of the details were perfect!

  • Dennis Pillion says:

    Great to see your blogs. Very proud of you.

  • Joy says:

    great way to brighten a gray winter day

    what did you use for the icing and to make the chocolate chips on the smash cake?

    • Allie says:

      The icing is made from confectioner’s sugar and butter with a bit of peanut butter added to color it instead of using food coloring. The “chocolate chips” were made with Nutella. Glad you like it!

  • […] Happy Friday, y’all! This little parody popped into my head the other day while watching Little Brother play outside. I hope you enjoy it. Inspired by the “If you give a…..” series by Laura Numeroff. For a fun party idea inspired by this series, check out Allie’s post here! […]

  • […] If You Give a Mouse a Cookie- Based on the book series by Laura Numeroff, this is the theme I picked for the Goober’s first birthday and I still love love love it. We made a cute chocolate chip cookie pull-string pinata and played Pin the Cookie on the Mouse. Simple, handmade felt play food that looked like milk and cookies made the perfect favors for our little guests. […]

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