I consider myself lucky when my close friends allow me to help with their child’s birthday party. As lady Oprah once said, “the more you celebrate your life, there more there is in life to celebrate”. For me growing up and still to this day, I love a good celebration, especially when it is for a special kid. For a second year in a row, my close friend gave me free range on putting together a celebration for her daughter, who also happens to be my daughter’s BFF. Our girls have grown up together in the last couple years despite a 2 year age gap, they simply love being in each other’s company.
I also had the pleasure of throwing her baby shower (see Oh So Sweet Cherry Baby Shower) and the big first birthday bash (see Little Ladybug First Birthday). All my friend knew she wanted for sure for this occasion was a teddy bear picnic vibe as her daughter’s love of bears is something fierce. And considering we are both teachers working with minimal income over the summer months, we wanted to keep costs to a minimium. Can you say hello dollar stores? Read along to see what we used to pull it off.
I picked up white wire baskets from Dollar Tree and filled each with a croissant, mini yogurt with spoon and flavored water boxes from kidsWATER. Noting it was a party for toddlers, I figured you couldn’t go wrong with this menu. In addition, we had a selection of individual Veggie Chip bags in three flavors party goers could choose from. In each picnic basket, I also placed a mini strawberry pinwheel as the baskets would be taken home in place of a goody bag. On that note, each child also got to choose a mini bear, also from the Dollar Tree, to use at the party and then take home.
Of course, the dessert offering was even more desired than the picnic lunch by the group. I am lucky my friend who was throwing the party is a master baker. She did up adorable bear, strawberry and watermelon sugar cookies. And of course, she didn’t forget the number “2” ones as well. Additionally, I had her do strawberry cake pops, as anything handheld works well for the 2 – 5 year old age grouping. I added some store bought strawberry vanilla cupcakes and the dessert table was complete.
The dessert table backdrop was something that sort of came together last minute. My original idea was to have the entire wall covered in crepe paper florals, but if you have made these, they are actually quite time consuming. So I found a banner in my party supplies and reworked it. It was all taped to one of those Science Project boards you can buy. It worked out great as I could just lean it up against the wall and it created a nice backdrop for photos of the birthday girl.
While we had a picnic blanket for the kids to eat on, I also setup a mini table in case they wanted to stand and eat. Once again, this age group doesn’t stay in one place for too long, so both were utilized throughout the party. The table was set with pink plates and pink and white gingham napkins, also from Dollar Tree. I took just a couple small vases and filled them with neutral fake florals I had in my stash.
After the picnic and treats, we brought out the parachute for the little one to enjoy. If you haven’t done the parachute game before, you must check it out. It is seriously something every single kid loves. You can just have the parachute or as we did, include balls and balloons for added audience excitement.
And just like that the party was over. Can’t wait to until the next celebration for this little one. Here is hoping her mom let’s me plan another one when she turns three.