Portland, Oregon:  Though it seems he was born only a few weeks ago, somehow Mary and Steve’s first grandchild, Cole Joseph, turned one this week. We couldn’t leave town with celebrating this huge occasion.

Mary’s daughter-in-law, Laura, makes Martha Stewart look like a loser. Laura decorated the house with an African animal theme and displayed photos high-lighting Cole’s first twelve months.

The dining room buffet was the designated dessert area. So cute – and the cake was absolutely delicious – a white butter cake with buttercream frosting, and the icing was not overly sweet. Just perfect.

Rosie, (of Rosycakes in Vancouver, Washington) baked the cutest sugar cookies, decorated in a monkey motif. Mary baked apple hand pies.

Laura and Chris also served lunch – assorted sandwiches and salads – to the 40  gathered guests. Family. Friends. Family of Friends. The posse. (So many of the posse also have babies and every single baby is a boy!) There were huge bowls of animal crackers as snacks. Theme!

How cute is this photo display?

Laura and Chris (Mary & Steve’s #3) give Cole his first sweet.

How cute is this little boy?

All the perfect decorations and foods the couple provided for the party were nothing compared to the true theme of Cole’s first birthday party: Love.

Laura’s Mom (Karen), Mary, Cole, and Marlene (Karen’s Mom/Laura’s grandmother)

Chris and Laura come from loving homes with long-married-and-super-supportive parents. Cole Joseph is surrounded by generations of grandparents, great-grandparents, aunts, uncles, and so many friends who will love and support him throughout his life.

Who couldn’t love that little face!

Happy Birthday, Cole!

Until my next update, I remain, your party animal correspondent.

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