A child's first birthday is a milestone in Korea. Many years ago, the country had a poor health system and many children died before their first birthday. If a baby lived past 100 days, the family would celebrate. If they lived up to their first birthday, the celebration would be even bigger. This tradition has carried on throughout the years. While the 100 day celebration may not be as big, the real party is when he/she turns one year old.
It was raining when I left home, so I took a cab to Bucheon. Traffic wasn't as bad as I thought, but it did take a bit of a long time to get there. The driver was kind enough to find the exact place I needed to be at.
This was my first time to attend a first birthday celebration. It was so fancy - it reminded me of weddings I'd been to here in Korea. Parent's go way out for this occasion. Here are some photos from the party.
There were three 1st birthday celebrations at the same venue (in different rooms) This was at the elevator so that guests knew exactly where to go.
This screen changes with photos of the different parties. It has information about the parent's names, the starting time and what room the party will be in.
The little man was having his photo taken. The venue has different backdrops for photos - really nice! He was dressed in a little black suit looking too cute!
There's a table with a display of photos and albums where guests can write a message to the baby. Hye-jin told me to write a long message (which I did ... in English!)
Seo-joon's grandmothers place silk over Seo-joon's neck wishing him a long and healthy life. This is his maternal grandmother.
Various objects are placed on a tray in front of the baby. Depending on what the baby picks up will be the path he/she will follow in life. Example: If he picks up a stethoscope, he'll go into the medical field. A pencil indicates an academic...and there's money which means he'll be wealthy in life.