I find all of my invitations on etsy.
This one was made by Tiffany at Mira Greetings.
I love etsy and have found many, many items on this website.
I bought Brody's 2nd birthday t-shirt from Trina at Azaria Designs.
But enough of the "plugs" for now. Let's get on with the party!
I began researching ideas for Brody's second birthday party the day after Brody's first birthday party. Call me crazy, but I L.O.V.E. planning his parties. It's the reason they are a little over the top. I do it because it's fun. I plan and prepare for months by myself, but the day before the party I always drag family and friends into my craziness. I'm just thankful they still love me...even though I know they are rolling their eyes behind my back every time I explain what I want for the party. I know they enjoy it a little too...otherwise they wouldn't have come back to help this year. :)
Here's a peak at this year's pre-party blow out...
This was Grandma's first year attending the pre-party.
We'll see if she comes back next year! ;)
The last minute ideas are ususally the best. Nine heads are better than one.
The "train engineers."
My dad and brother took my simple cardboard train idea and ran with it!!!
Phil, once again, took a disaster of an idea and made it work.
Lollypop mug shot.
The kitchen gets chaotic about an hour before the guests arrive.
The Cricut Expression is the secret to how I created almost everything at the party. I was cutting out shapes, letters, and Disney characters for three weeks straight to prepare for the party. About an hour before the party started, everyone was coming up with new ideas and asking me to cut this or that out with my brilliant machine. I'd had about enough when this picture was taken...It was time for me to jump in the shower as the guests were due to arrive in less than an hour!
At 4:00pm on Saturday, May 28, 2010, the first guests had arrived and were given their glasses of lemonade.
Brody was clearly excited to see many of his family and friends in his backyard.
All the kids enjoyed playing in the cardboard choo-choo train.
And blowing bubbles at the bubble station.
I got my recipe for homemade bubbles from Ashley at Under The Sycamore. This recipe made AMAZING bubbles. So much better than the store bought stuff...and cheaper too!
Brody especially enjoyed the bubbles...until he took a dive into the the bucket and got soap in his eyes.
Jonathan and I rushed him up to the shower to get it all out. Let's just say it wasn't one of our shining moments as parents as guests downstairs heard us crack under pressure. But when the soap was washed away and Brody had on dry clothes once again, we kissed and made up and enjoyed the rest of the party.
Jonathan and Phil were our chefs again this year. They grilled Hamburgers and Hot Diggity Dogs.
Wynni was the head chef though as she took charge in the kitchen.
Everyone seemed to enjoy the backyard burgers and dogs with chips and fruit.
But we saved the best for last. Dessert. At Brody's Candy Bar.
I think the icing on the cake for Brody was all the cool new toys he was blessed with.
We tried to instill in Brody the value of appreciation. After each gift he opened, we asked him to say "thank you" to the giver and give him/her a hug. He did very well.
The party soon ended with a big bang.
And we sent each child home with a train engineer hat, a train whistle, and a Mickey Mouse lollypop.
But not before we made sure to document each and every sweet friend/family member that attended and madeBrody's second birthday a very special one.
Are you thinking that must have been a lot of work making Mickey ears for every person in attendance? Think again. I made blank cut-outs and photo-shopped the names on later. Here's a before.
But, as you can see, my mistake was not planning an appropriate spot for the picture wall. The sun was shinning in the guests' eyes at this time of day. We tried to eliminate the problem by holding an umbrella over the guests but it just made for shady pictures. Also, many of our guests were taller than the wall so their heads were not inside the appropriate space. We should have had each guest sit. I learned my lessons for next year and now I'm sharing them with you so that you don't make the same mistakes if you want to have a picture wall at your next party.
Another lesson I learned this year:
Don't put balloons out too early if your party is in the heat of the day (especially black ones). Our balloon garland went from super cute to super pathetic as each black balloon popped one at a time before the party even started. My dad tried to salvage the garland by replacing them, but it was hopeless.
Oh well. You live and you learn.
We had fun regardless of the mistakes made. Thank you to everyone who made Brody's 2nd birthday party special. We love you all and hope you had as much fun as we did!