This past Sunday was Damien’s second birthday. I’m still a bit in denial about my son being a whole two years old. I have lots of feeeeeelings about it all, so this post isn’t really about that. Maybe I’ll write about that later, maybe not. I’m not sure I have a firm enough grasp on it all to really have anything interesting to say but as an exercise in writing down parts of my life I might get that written sometime soon. Maybe I’ll just tell you all about what an amazing kids he is and all the ridiculous things he’s up to these days. There are A LOT of ridiculous things.
Anyway, this post is about his party. Anyone who has known me for more than five seconds knows I LOVE planning parties, especially kid birthday parties. I come up with a theme and design a hypothetical party around that theme just for kicks all the time. I’ve helped people plan their own child’s parties and we all know I throw a decent party for my own kids. For Damien’s second birthday we decided on a Mickey Mouse Clubhouse theme because the little guy is known to love him some MMC.
The first step was to pick out and order an invite. I usually go to Etsy for my party invites and spend hours, across multiple days, browsing the options. For a theme that includes Mickey you KNOW there are just an epic amount of designs. I narrowed it down to a handful and asked Geoff what he thought, then went with what I liked best because let’s be real here. I’m the only one that really cares what the invite looks like.
From there I settle on the menu and figure out what I want to do for the cake. This was the first party I used Pinterest to look for and organize my ideas. Before you guys go saying nice things about anything I share here, know that just about none of it was my own original idea. I’m just a really good idea thief. That’s it. So for food I did a “Hot Diggity Dog Bar” with all the fixings. I included little table signs with the ingredients listed out for some popular hot dog options like the “Chicago Dog” and the “Coney Dog.” Additionally, I made a “Minnie Mouse Bowtie Pasta Salad”, “Mooska Cheese and Crackers”, “Goofy’s Vegetable Garden”, and “Chip and Dale’s Chips and Dips.” For the pasta salad I stayed with the party’s color theme by using yellow tomatoes, black olives, white feta cheese, and red sundried tomatoes. And because the internet is sometimes an extremely lovely place the pasta salad included Mickey shaped noodles because April was kind enough to pick some up from Disney World and send them to me for the party. For no reason other than she’s kind and thoughtful. Such a special touch- thank you April!
For the cake, I went with cupcakes because they are just so much easier. Everyone gets a little self contained treat and kids don’t completely overdose on sugar from a huge slice of cake. I decided to go really simple with the cupcakes and just used cute wrappers and mini-oreos in the frosting to look like Mickey ears. I’m really pleased with how they came out!
The next step is decor. Now, there are Mickey Mouse party supplies EVERYWHERE. And it’s cheap! I considered going that route but at the end of the day I just couldn’t do it. It’s fiiiiine if you or anyone else want to go that way. I just really enjoy crafting my own decorations and putting things together so I went the less easy and less cheap route. I’m a genius, obviously. I ended up having to cut a few ideas I had due to time and resources, but in general things were still pretty stinkin’ cute. The morning of Damien’s birthday he came downstairs, looked around, and shouted “Mickey!” before going into his happy dance and that singular moment was worth all the work.
The party itself was lovely. We never know what the weather will be for either kids’ birthday party so we plan on having it be indoors only. Because we don’t have a huge home, we keep the invites down to about 20 people and due to last minute cancellations we had about 14 people total- totally relaxed and manageable! Hayley and Damien did some rough housing that if looked upon by the untrained eye looked like a nice hug between siblings before this happened:
As usual, Damien was not a fan of everyone singing “Happy Birthday” to him, but he was completely on board with the blowing out of the candle and the eating of the cupcakes.
Look how cute my kids were in their party hats!
We generally have a no-gift-opening-at-the-party policy because I personally can’t stand when little kids open other kids’ gifts at a party nor am I particularly fond of making the gifts a central part of the party. You don’t have to bring a gift! Really! I just want you to come celebrate and have a good time! But because this is a picture filled post already, here are some gift opening pics anyway.
That night he was completely tuckered out. It’s only then, with his Mickey Mouse tucked under his arm, that he looked like my little baby boy again.
The next day we went to Toys R Us, as is our tradition, and let Damien pick out his birthday present. While waiting for his balloons be looked up and said, “Choo-choo!” to Geoff and go ahead and guess what he ended up picking out.
And THAT, my friends, is how we celebrated two years with my very favorite little boy.