Thursday, April 14, 2011
The Birthday Party of the Century!
Ok, maybe a bit extreme to say "of the Century," but it was definitely a hit, if I do say so myself. :) Helps to have an awesome father-in-law to let you throw a party at his sweet casa. This totally wouldn't have worked at our old house...we needed LOTS of space because we had so many wonderful friends and family show up! Good thing we were prepared! One of the keys to its success was planning out where (inside and out) we would have everything located (cake, food, presents, each activity). That helped me think through the whole party and made sure I had things set up (mostly) before everyone arrived. I think our only major set-back was the giant mess of lemonade that spilled out of one of the drink coolers onto the kitchen floor, cabinets, oh yeah-and me- about 5 min. before the party started...let's just say it helps to have a sense of humor and good delegation skills! ;)
Side note: having a party on the "whole" hour (ours started at 11:30) is a better idea...I think people had a hard time remembering when it started! Oopsies! My bad! (speaking of "my bad" have y'all seen that Jello commercial? hilarious!)
We had lots of little stations set up outside for the kids to go to as they chose. There was a "wrecking ball" (demolition) one where we tied some girls tights (from the Dollar Tree) to a tree branch, stuck a ball in the foot and let them knock over a tower of blocks. (That's their favorite part anyway-knocking over your, I mean, their creations, right?)
A digging for toys one (Oriental Trading company had super cute bath squeeze tools, construction rubber duckies, and construction truck erasers-which are the only ones I wouldn't recommend for the little ones-they fell apart way too easily! Oh, and got the cute hard hats super cheap from there too)...got some plastic shovels from Allison and the Dollar Tree and used some of the dirt we're in the process of filling our flower beds with and stuffed the toys in there and let them go to town. Each kid could keep a few toys a piece.
A dump truck race...up and down the hill in the backyard. I swear our boys could spend all day doing this!
And toss the beanbags (old grey t-shirts sewn and stuffed with beans to resemble boulders) into the dump truck.
We also had lots of other trucks to play with out in the grass and pea-gravel and sidewalk chalk-to create some fabulous "blueprints" or roads for their cars.
I made the signs out of white foam board that I painted. I'm a perfectionist to the core, so I had a very hard time letting it go when the lines weren't straight and the "font" wasn't "right," but we can say I'm making progress. (Time mostly forced me to let that one go!) I also had some other signs around the house like "UNloading Zone" for the presents and "Work Zone Begins" on the front walk (and when you left the house, the back of the sign read "Work Zone Ends"). I wish I would've taken a picture of the door...We covered it in caution tape and many people (some family! ha!) thought the door was broken! One of my boy's little friends had said, "Oh, no. Is there no party?" haha! It must have looked like the real deal!
The food went over ok-two and three year olds don't really eat, even if it's pizza, so when they could "build" their own pizza, some were into it and others wanted to go back outside and run with the dump trucks. (They were really cute with their little aprons on...if I was a better planner, or just had more time, I would have made them from a dish towel -some really cute tutes on-line! but instead I nearly lost my mind when I saw some at the Dollar Tree...SO much easier when I was needing about 20)
Everyone likes sugar, so the cupcake station at the end of the party was a huge hit. They are so independent at this age; they loved choosing from the three different kinds of cupcakes and icings (especially the kind that squirts out of the can!) and putting on mini m&ms, mini chocolate chips, and chocolate sprinkles. (Yes, most of them put all three on!) They were quite the cupcakes! I had all of the toppings in empty soup/bean cans that I painted to look like construction barrels. (Again-letting the perfectionism go!)
So does all this explain why I've not posted about the party for so long? I think I've needed the two weeks to recover! (It really was easy, and even more so with all the wonderful help of friends and family that I had! Thanks everyone!)