I love hosting parties. I love parties of all kinds and all sizes- give me a color scheme or theme and I’m ALL OVER IT. But nothing makes me happier than planning kid parties. I love it. LOVE. I’d do it as a full-time career if I could. Oh, how much I’d love that.
When Hayley turned one she had a cupcake party.
When she turned two it was milk and cookies.
Then last year, a month after her brother was born, we had a tea party to celebrate three.
This year I had TWO kid parties to throw and, oh, it was so much fun. Indulge me, will you?
Very soon after Damien was born I started to think about his first birthday party. Now, listen, I know first birthday parties are kind of silly to a lot of people, but to me it is an occasion to celebrate our first year with the newest member of our family. It’s a big deal to me, as a mother, and I go into it knowing the whole deal is more for me than the kid, who has no real clue what is going on. I know that. I’m more than ok with that! I LIKE this stuff, ok?
Ahem. So I started thinking about the party really early on and decided I wanted to do a monster theme. I wanted it to be cute and still appropriate for a baby, but monsters it would be! Once I really started planning I found out that the monster theme maybe wasnt going to be as easy as I’d thought. But that’s ok! I was up for the challenge. I had some luck at Michaels, and I ordered a few things from Oriental Trading Company and while it didn’t all exactly match I think it all worked pretty well!
While I do LOVE to throw these parties, space is always an issue. Both the kids have their birthday during the winter which means we can’t count on using any outside space and staying indoors is really limiting. Aside from Hayley’s first two birthdays, all of the other parties have been small and family only. We’re talking a dozen people here. Small and pretty low-key. Keeping it small means I’m able to do most of the food myself (we ordered some pizza for Damien’s party) which saves a lot of money. So, armed with all my decorations and ideas I stole from all over the place, Damien had his monster themed birthday party!
I’m also one to dress my kids up to match the theme. Don’t judge me.
While I made cupcakes for all the guests, I made Damien a little “smash cake” that I thought he’d love. He wasn’t really sure what to do with it at first. But then he got a taste and, well, his world was rocked.
So, Damien won’t remember the party. But we will, and he’ll get to look back at pictures someday and see how loved he is and how excited we were to celebrate all that he adds to our family. And in the moment? I think he enjoyed himself.
A little over a month later it was time for Hayley’s 4th birthday. This was the first year where she had definite opinions on her party: she wanted a candy-themed tea party. Ok then! She also was very specific about the food. We would have tuna sandwiches, chocolate filled strawberries, blueberry scones, tea cookies, iced tea, and a (BIG!) (chocolate and strawberry!) cake. And candy. Don’t forget the candy, mom.
I had lots of decorations and ideas from the previous years’ tea party, but I needed to find a way to balance the bright colors and cheer of a candy party with the femininity and class of a tea party. I had a really hard time finding my direction, so one afternoon I went for a walk in Party City and I picked out some plates and napkins and suddenly I had a plan! Well, the beginnings of one anyway. Over the next few weeks I accumulated the rest of my supplies and started feeling pretty confident.
The one thing that kept throwing me for a loop was the cake. I had SO MANY IDEAS. Poor Geoff looked at so many pictures and stuff as I changed my mind 12 times a day. Many of the ideas I had were extremely tedious and would end up being pretty expensive. I finally decided to cut myself a break and cover the cake in bright rainbow colored sprinkles easy, festive, and it felt like it fit with the rest of the party. I used some washi tape and bakers twine to make a little flag banner for the cake (and some sandwich picks), which saved me some more money and was painfully simple to do. All in all, I’m pretty pleased with how it all came together in the end.
Hayley was really happy with it all and the cake ended up being a big hit. All four layers of it.
And again, this face?
The only problem now is I’m out of kids. I have a whole 11 months before the next party. Can I come throw a party at your house? Pretty please??
No, really. Can I? No? Ok, then can I give you some ideas? Are you stuck on something for a party you’re hosting? Do you have any questions about any of the stuff I’ve done? COME ON, I need my kid (or non kid!) party fix!