Monday, September 29, 2014

Baby M's First Birthday Party (Doljabi)

Time flies! Before we knew it, it was baby M's first birthday. This past year was definitely tough. Dan and I had no idea how much work it really took to take care of a baby. So I really wanted to celebrate baby M's first birthday--it truly was a celebration. We passed one of the most challenging years, and I heard it gets easier in a way after they are a year old! :) The first birthday is also a very big deal in Korean culture, so we planned a pretty big party for her.

I wanted to have it at a restaurant, so I didn't have to worry about set up and tear down. All I really had to plan was the dessert table, her doljabi ceremony, entertainment, and party favors.

For the dessert table, I ordered a two-tiered cake from a local bakery as the main centerpiece. My mother in law bought Korean rice cakes. The madelines , merengue, and sugar cookies, I got from Whole Foods. I actually did my own flowers from Trader Joe's, and it wasn't too hard!

The color scheme was pink and grey. In addition to the two-tiered cake, I ordered a small smash cake for baby M that turned out great.

I ordered pink and grey straws as well as pink and grey bags for the dessert table.

Food was brunch, buffet style.

One of the traditional elements of a Korean first birthday is the Doljabi. Here's a little bit of background on Doljabi:

What does a Korean Doljabi signify?

The first birthday is a very important milestone to the baby and parents. Historically, the whole village used to celebrate a baby’s first birthday, sharing food and wishing for long life and fortune for the baby.

What is a Doljabi?

The "Doljabi" is an event in which the baby picks from items placed in front of them. The baby's future is predicted according to what she grabs. All of the items have good meanings, so the purpose of this event is to wish for the baby's longevity and good fortune.

To get everyone's full participation, we also had a doljabi raffle. I prepped the following items for her:
Stethoscope - Doctor
Paintbrush - Artist
Microphone - Entertainer
Yarn - Long life
Money - Wealth

For the raffle, everyone made their guess of what baby M would choose. What do you think???

After scanning the options, she first selected the Microphone and then second, Money! So I guess she'll be a rich K-pop star. :)

Overall the party turn out great. It was actually a bit more tiring than I thought. But we were very happy to be able to celebrate this great milestone with family and friends.

Now that she is a year old, hopefully we can travel more. :)


  1. we’re glad to be a part of the celebration. Happy birthday again, Mikayla - one of the cutest baby girls I’ve ever seen :)

  2. Wow, everything you have planned for party is looking amazing. I just loved the decent colors your party planner has used. Can you tell me how much planning costed you?