Despite the adorable setup and happy kiddos, Ali Fedotowsky-Manno tells PEOPLE there was a "rookie move" on her part at son Riley's first birthday party

By Jen Juneau and Aili Nahas
May 30, 2019 05:25 PM
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Happy first birthday, Riley Doran!

Ali Fedotowsky-Manno‘s baby boy turned 1 alongside his mom, dad Kevin Manno and 2½-year-old big sister Molly Sullivan on Saturday at a “Little Manno”-themed celebration.

Guests were greeted upon entry with a slew of blue and white decorations, including balloons galore — and lots of cute mustache-themed touches like balloons and cupcake toppers and an “Our Little Manno” sign by Woodums.

“When I was coming up with themes for his birthday, my friend suggested the little man theme,” the former Bachelorette, 34, tells PEOPLE exclusively of her son’s big day. “And then when we realized we could change it to Manno, it could not have been more perfect.”

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Credit: Ashley Burns Photography
Riley Manno
cake table
Riley Manno

Between taking in the gorgeous decorations and giving love to the birthday boy (who couldn’t have looked cuter in his dashing black-and-white formal wear and precious top hat), attendees noshed on a variety of goodies — like desserts by Polkatots, including a three-tier cake with a topper that proclaimed, “Our Little Manno.”

“But don’t let all these cute pics fool you,” says the mom of two. “I thought I had the party totally under control until I realized an hour into it that I didn’t have any food prepared for the kids!”

“Total rookie move and major mom fail. Oh well, I’m human!” Fedotowsky-Manno adds to PEOPLE. “I quickly threw together some mac & cheese and lemonade.”

Ali Fedotowsky-Manno, Kevin Manno, Molly and Riley
| Credit: Ashley Burns Photography

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Adding to the sweet spread were intricately decorated cookies emblazoned with “Riley,” plus lots of kisses and even a smash-cake session where Riley was able to shed his party wear (save for a cute pink bow tie!) in favor of frosting.

“When people used to tell me that time flies with your kiddos I used to think they were crazy, because the first year of Molly’s life was one of the longest of my life! Transitioning to parenthood is tough,” Fedotowsky-Manno admits.

Ali Fedotowsky-Manno, Kevin Manno and Riley
Riley Manno

“But with Riley, the first year just flew by!” she continues. “I still can’t believe I’m a mom to a 1-year-old and a 2-year-old. I think the year also flew by because Riley is just such a joy!”

Adds the proud mama, “He is such a happy little guy and we are so grateful for him every day.”