As you know, little O turned two this week. I keep asking myself where the time has gone, but now even I am getting tired of the question. Move on, Mares. Move on. OK. So…I figured I would save my pontification for another piece and give you a good old, DIY post.
O’s birthday party was a laborious task only a mother would undertake. Or, as in this case, two mothers. Yes, we shared the celebration with O’s second cousin, Nora (born 2 days later). Number one on the suggestion list is to co-host your celebration. You cut the work (and cost) in half…and it’s so much more fun to share it all. We had a head count of about 35 people. Mostly adults. So the menu reflected a more mature palate. This was not a peanut butter and jelly crowd. It was a picnic/cookout, but we wanted something a bit different. So we went with a more sophisticated version of the traditional fare. The menu was almost exclusively lifted from Pinterest..of course. We did a gourmet burger with guacamole, bratwursts, and a blue cheese coleslaw (that was out of this world, if I dare say so). We made thematic tags for the food like Oscar the Grouch’s Gourmet Burgers, Sunny Days Slaw and Big Bird’s Brats. We added some smaller sides, as suggested by the pin. Here is the link for the menu. We followed it pretty much to the tee and found it to be the perfect amount of food and drinks.
We served beer and wine and either bottled water or pink lemonade for the non alcoholic choice. We set up a separate drink table and used a 3 gallon dispenser for the pink lemonade. I then printed out a cut out of Abby Caddaby’s face from Pinterest, laminated it, and double stick taped it on the dispenser. It was super cute!
Decorations were pretty simple. Balloons & Balloons. Different colored table covers (throw away). Different colored paper plates and napkins. And a Sesame Street Happy Birthday Banner from Party City. Oh, and more balloons. My cousin (Nora’s mother) made a party play list for the music, including the Sesame Street theme and oodles of happy, fun music, but not specifically children’s music. It was a party for two children, but it wasn’t a children’s party, per say.
The dessert table was where I got creative with the Sesame Street theme. Of course, Elmo’s Goldfish were included. And Abby Caddaby’s magic wands (chocolate dipped pretzel rods). Chocolate Chip cookies were served, as well as alphabet cookies and extra Cookie Monster fudge (more on that ahead).
Our Aunt Fil offered to get the cake which was a tremendous help. So number two on the suggestion list…..when someone offers to bring something, say YES. It could have said “Happy Retirement Sal” on it and it would have been great. But as you can see, she kept with the Sesame theme beautifully!
I mentioned the Cookie Monster Fudge. Again, Pinterest! Super cute. Pretty easy. And quite tasty.
I doubled the recipe and made enough to give as favors for the guests. Found some small cellophane baggies at the dollar store and a cute Sesame Street pack of stickers ($ store) and used a label program on my computer to write the “Thank You so much for coming. Love, Nora and Oliver.” Soooo cute! Everything stuck to some construction paper squares, I punched some holes and used some ribbon. Viola!
It was a really lovely day. I dont recommend doing it yourself if you are the type who wants to relax and enjoy the party. The whole time you are waiting on your guests, you are also running after a two year old…or at least trying to. Both sets of parents were wiped out by the time the last guest left around 8 or so. Like a truck ran over our bodies. But it was lovely, nonetheless. We held it at my parents home as it is so much closer to the bulk of the family on my side. Maybe that’s why it reminded me so much of the picnics my Mom and Dad used to have summer after summer while we were growing up. In a private moment of pause during the party I made my husband promise to remind me next year how hard it was so it would discourage me from wanting to do it again. But, a lot like childbirth…you kind of forget the tough parts and remember the sweetness of it all. Happy Happy Birthday my sweet O. You have changed me for the better. Xo
Until next time, keep fighting the good fight and remember, behind every great kid is a mom who is pretty sure she is screwing it up! Thanks for reading! Xo