Thursday, May 1, 2014

2nd Birthday Party


We had a great time celebrating Ashlynn's 2nd birthday with our friends this past weekend.  We kept the guest list pretty small since last year's First Birthday Bash was crazy overwhelming with the amount of adults and children in our home.  

I think we had about twelve adults and nine kids, which was still pretty busy in our house, but way more manageable and less stressful.  I didn't go as overboard as I planned with the spread.  I initially dreamed up a lot of food on their ability to be woven into the theme - "seaweed" spinach dip, "crab" croissants (with google eye tooth picks), crab dip, "starfish" finger sandwiches, etc.  I never even bothered printing out the printable mermaid cupcake toppers I bookmarked because I was to lazy too replace my printer's ink.  



The "party" was from 2-4pm (though a lot of friends stayed later), so we ended up deciding to skip serving a true lunch since we assumed most of our guests would have eaten before making the trip.  We did have a tray of (Philly Soft Pretzel) rivets that was crushed, and seriously there is nothing like a true philly soft pretzel, do not be fooled!  We had spinach and crab dip (both super easy), veggies, crackers, cheese, and a giant fruit bowl.  I tried to stay as kid friendly as I could knowing that my own child mainly eats fruit, cheese, and goldfish.


I grabbed some boxes of milk for the kids and made one of my go-to punches.  This time it was Pineapple Orange punch and it just as delicious those I've made in the past (here and here).   Funfetti cupcakes (boxed) and vanilla icing (canned) rimmed with crushed graham crackers for a sandy beach effect, dipped marshmellows, and some (store bought) cookies rounded out the treats.


As you can see, I phoned it in a bit... but you know what? THAT'S OKAY!  Having a "pinnable" party with homemade everything and a gazillion little details is nice, but definitely not a requirement for a good time.  I do enjoy putting out a cute spread, hanging some decorations, but I also enjoy spending time with my kids and getting some sleep at night.  If I wasn't able to accomplish something during a nap (which they barely ever both take at the same time), it probably got sidelined as a great idea that wasn't going to happen.  And you know what else, no one was none the wiser!


And aside from buying the food, I only purchased the table cloth, 3 packs of crepe paper, and 3 sets of paper plates (all from Target).  The metallic purple polka dot burlap runner was picked up from Jo-Anns,  the pink paper cups for the goldfish were unused leftovers from last year's party and the paper straws are from my own stash.  I also reused the baby food jar bud vases from last year.  Moral of the story.  Reuse and recycle things you already have and there is no shame in store-bought or boxed treats!  You can still have a great set up and without any of the stress.  


Ashlynn was a little unsure of all the kids over at first, but warmed up within the hour.  She was thoroughly excited when it came time for cupcakes and singing Happy Birthday.  She was so excited to sing and even though she was a bit bashful, I think she enjoyed being center of attention.



We had a great time and will definitely be keeping our parties smaller scale from here on out! 


18 comments:

  1. Such a perfectly fun party! We scaled back for lex's second and everyone had just as much fun (if not more!). And it looks like Ashlynn loved turning TWO!

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  2. So cute! The party still looks perfectly Pin worthy! We're keeping Odette's birthday small too :)
    www.dettecakes.blogspot.com

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  3. Charlotte HanleyMay 1, 2014 at 10:20 AM

    I seriously love how you are so creative yet REAL at the same time. Homemade everything, 'ain't nobody got time for dat!'

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  4. So glad she had a great birthday! Everything looks so good, you did great - how do you find the time!?
    xo megan

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  5. Aw! I think the party is still pin fabulous! So glad y'all had a good time and you didn't stress yourself out too much :) kudos mama!

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  6. Jennifer PargeonMay 1, 2014 at 10:44 AM

    It all looks great! Glad everyone had such a good time. In the end, that's all that matter anyway.

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  7. Adorable party decor. Love that last picture Ashlynn at the table with her cupcake. She looks even older than 2!!

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  8. Everything looks amazing! I love how you reused a lot of stuff from her first birthday. And I’m in love with those adorable marshmallows! I am feeling the same way about my daughters upcoming second birthday... Last year was too stressful so we’re not even doing a party, just a fun day for her and I am so excited to not be planning anything ;)

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  9. Cute spread indeed!! I'm so on the same page with toning it down for birthday party #2, thanks for reassuring it's ok. :) What a precious family picture blowing out the candle. Party well done, Momma!!

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  10. What a cute party! We're having my daughter's second birthday party this weekend, and were definitely keeping it smaller. I think it's more enjoyable that way :)

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  11. Michelle ZapalskiMay 1, 2014 at 10:44 PM

    Happy Birthday Ashlynn!

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  12. It's absolutely perfect! I love everything that you did. Totally my speed. I personally love the 2-4 party so that you can just serve fun snack foods and not worry about serving an entire meal. I've done it that way the last 3 years and it has been amazing every time.

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  13. Amen sister. I'm all about the store bought homemade cupcakes. I made some for Easter and people kept telling me how good they were. Win :) Love the party decor!

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  14. So sweet! I think it looks amazing! The table set-up is totally pin worthy :) I love the blue against your grey walls! I'm sure she had such an amazing time! Perfection.

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  15. It still looks like you outdid yourself!! Love the mermaid theme! I guess I better start thinking about Ethan's bday...oy!!! Happy Friday friend! xo

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  16. what a cute party! here's the thing...i'm impressed that you managed a party AT ALL with TWO kids! Oy! I woulda thrown in the towel and headed to Disneyland. ;) Good job friend!

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  17. I love this! It looks amazing! You did a great job. The theme is adorable. We've been to a couple birthday parties over the last few weeks and Mac now relates birthday to cupcakes, which is hilarious. I asked him what he wanted for his birthday and he said "cupcakes and big presents!" :) Hope A had a wonderful day!

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