I have a two-year-old!!! HOLY CRAP.
We did "Red, White, and TWO!" this year, because, let's be honest, this is the only year you can get away with a 4th of July theme for your July 7th kid and not be seen as totally lazy, since the "two" just fits in there so perfectly. It was the easiest shopping I've ever done for a party since every single store had thematic supplies out there. It was a bit of a struggle to keep it red/white/blue themed and not patriotic themed, so I tried to really focus on the stars and colors, with just a few stripes and no actual flags. (Click here to see my Pinterest inspiration board.)
Below are a "few" bigger versions of the above pictures from the party. I say "few" in quotes because after scrolling through 100 pictures you'll hate me for misleading you.
Front and back of this year's invite. I carried the chalk theme throughout the party (very lightly).
Oh, and P.S. - thank you to my sister Kimberly for taking most of these pictures and letting me enjoy the party!
Pinwheels from OTC, bunting from Target's dollar aisle.
Infamous ruffled Pinterest streamer - THIS I made. THIS short little piece took FOREVER. I gave up. But it was cute and easy!
This is just included to show how committed I was to using thematically colored pieces wherever I could. I brought her toy bin to put water in. I might be crazy.
So a "please don't arrest me" story about this jug. From Target...originally with a green lid. I switched the red lid from a different design to match my theme. Star sippy cups from OTC.
Star suckers from OTC.
I wish I had a better pic of the banner, but it turned out really well. Designed in Photoshop and just printed at home.
Cowboy hats from OTC; most of the toys from the Dollar Tree or Target.
Straws from Etsy.
Plates, napkins, forks/spoons/knives - all Dollar Tree! I will say - you could see and feel that they weren't as good quality as pricier versions, especially with the cutlery. But you know what? It's a kid's party, and they'll be tossed in 20 minutes. In this case, the cheap cost is well worth it.
My wonderful sister made us some wonderful cupcakes (I re-purposed the cupcake stand from last year by spray-painting it white).
Pinterest-inspired fruit kabobs - star skewers from OTC.
Were the hats the best purchase of the entire darn party? PROBABLY.
Isn't my mom (below) ridiculously gorgeous? She glows with this amazing inner light - you truly can't help but smile when you see her.
The squirt guns literally saved the day. With only one other kid around, Carys was getting pretty bored.
Her boots are from Old Navy and I made the skirt - well, kind of. I bought the overskirt from Old Navy and cut it up and sewed in the red/white ruffle bustle. I'd give directions, but I winged it from a picture I saw on Pinterest and also I didn't know what the fuck I was doing. Also, you may not be able to see it in the pics, but as I was finishing it the morning of the party (I suck) Carys decided to "help" me sew, so there's a huge seam down the side where there shouldn't be that makes it lie funny. But
I had no time to fix it she was very proud of herself so I let it be.
The sweet little star headband is from Etsy. JUST KIDDING! Target dollar aisle FTW.
One of the pitfalls of party planning is RSVPs - or lack thereof. Several people with kids who said they'd be there didn't make it, and none of the "unknowns." So I tried to have enough favors just in case they all showed up - and none did! But it worked out well for the adults who were kids at heart.
I'm not joking when I say the adults liked the favors just as much as the kids.
Luckily there was Carys and one other kid to enjoy them! (There was one other girl, but she was a little to old to stoop down to this level.)
These balloons lingered around our house for WEEEEEEEKS afterward. You can't see it, but I threw an Elmo balloon in there for her - he's literally one of the only characters she recognized and knows by name. Hey, he's red, so it works! Oh, and hint - this entire balloon bouquet cost THIRTEEN DOLLARS. A dollar a balloon from Dollar Tree. That's it. Factory Card Outlet? Same balloons, three bucks each PLUS another buck to fill them up with helium. Dollar Tree filled 'em for free with purchase.
I beg you to stop keeping track of how much sugar she's pictured as enjoying in these pictures. It's a lot. Leave it at that.
As a 2-year-old, playing with fire is totally kosher.
My sister offered to make us the cake - it turned out adorably. I love a good handmade cake! (Yes, I should have given her a matching platter to use....hindsight!)
Star candles from Dollar Tree!
She freaked out a bit once everyone started looking at her.
So I tried to distract her by encouraging her to lick the frosting. (Fancy headbands both from Dollar Store.)
Her aunts and uncles were still playing with fire.
More sugar! Wheeee!
Did I mention the inside of the cake was "red"??? (Ok, it turned out pink. But EFFORT!)
My sister got her the best present - a fish tank! She loves feeding and watching her little fish.
And with this I have to officially retire the "baby" post labels (at least until number two comes along and takes over) and replace them with "toddler" labels. I've done both for the last year, but I think it's time to admit she's not a baby anymore. Someone hand me a kleenex? Sniff, sniff.
Next year I'll have TWO birthday parties to plan. What. The. Eff.
Good-bye, Etsy. Good-bye, Pinterest. Hello, Chuck-E-Cheese!