Isabella’s First Birthday Party! (Part 1)

This post could have been titled so many different things like…

Surviving 21 hours in a car with my mom.


99 bottles of beer on the wall, 99 bottles of beer…

A hobbits tale, or there and back again.

Let’s just say, I love my brother, but 10.5 hours each way is pushing it!

However, this little pumpkin?  Totally worth the drive.

Isn’t she just too cute for words?

After a seemingly endless car ride and a big family dinner –  Isabella decided to treat us all to a little piano performance.

such focus

After much convincing, she finally got her old man to accompany her for a duet.

“ok dad, take it from here”

I love how serious they both look

Can’t be serious all the time 🙂

After the evening’s entertainment concluded, the girls set to work finishing the party decorations while my brother and sister-in-law ran last minute errands.

Here is my sister hot gluing beans to an oatmeal cannister masterfully hand-crafting a Dol tower.

Dol towers are…  Well, I don’t know really.  Originally they were stacks of rice cakes that were passed out to guests as party favors.  Each color of the rice cake represents different elements of life: health, safety, purity, honesty, and of course a long life.  Sharing the rice cakes is supposed to help bless the child with each of these things.  Also, they are really yummy and just should be shared!  Today the more modern thing to do is create a series of towers that represent the child.  In our case we had three.  One that represented her chinese zodiac for the year she was born, one that had her Korean name and one that said first birthday.  They are more for decorative purposes and, in a way, maybe a little more practical than trying to consume/pass-off hundreds of rice cakes…

My Grandmother and I working on our tower

Here’s what the finished towers looked like at the party.  Not too shabby, eh?  This was the combined effort of 5 people and many hours.  Now, as long as my family produces female children, cyclically in the year of the tiger, whom all happen to take the Korean name of Min Young, we won’t have to do this again… ever.  Just kidding guys.  It wasn’t THAT bad.

Pics from the party coming next, but for now goodnight!



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