Last weekend we held Charlotte's third birthday party! When Grace turned three, she had a Hello Kitty party. After a busy summer of moving, surgeries and recovery, I really didn't have the time or energy to be creative. Since we already had a lot of the
The last few years, the weather on Charlotte's birthday has been perfect! Warm and sunny! So I figured that the weather would be nice once again and as our neck of the woods would be in apple harvest, why not celebrate outside with a picnic and apples?
Here are the invites -
I added the picnic basket part - it swivels around on a brad to reveal additional information - so that I could inform guests that we were planning on getting wet!
I had a lot of outside, water activities planned!
Next on the to-do list was a birthday outfit for the birthday girl! Nothing says picnic like gingham, right?
This dress was my own creation - kind of. I saw a dress like this online but they didn't make it in Charlotte's size. I couldn't find a pattern that was my exact vision, so I used portions of different patterns and winged it a bit - and this is what I came up with!
Amazingly - it fit!
A few days before the party, the weather report was not good. The temperatures dipped, the skies clouded over and rain, rain, rain. Lots of rain! So we had to move the picnic indoors and make some last minute revisions.
The decorations -
I had some fabric left over from making Charlotte's dress...and Grace's dress. I know the birthday girl is the only one who should get a party dress but I couldn't resist the gingham fabric. Anyway, with the leftover fabric, I made a garland and a centerpiece to hang above the children's table.
Unfortunately, all the party prep finished moments before guests arrived and I didn't do a very thorough job photographing the party. In fact, there are huge chunks of the party where I didn't get any pictures at all. Huge bummer! Hard to host a part and photograph it at the same time!
The cake once again was from Frost Me Sweet and they knocked it out of the park once again! You can't see it, but Hello Kitty is sitting on a gingham picnic blanket and the little apples on the side match the invitation perfectly! We devoured this cake!!
I made a few little things just to make it Charlotte's - since I didn't want it to feel like Grace's party all over again! Above was a little C for Charlotte and below a mason jar garland that says 'celebrate.'
This is a poor picture, but it was a candid camera moment so I didn't have time to make sure my camera was on the right settings. The little "flowers" have a letter on them and all together spell Charlotte. Charlotte was pointing to the letters and saying the letters as she pointed and at the end she yelled - CHARLOTTE! THAT'S ME!!
I dressed up the apple garland I made for the Back to School party with some photos of Charlotte from the past year. This was one of my favorite items I made. In fact, it is still hanging in the kitchen. I don't have the heart yet to take it down.
Each guest had a little picnic basket at their seat. The kids got a sucker and the adults got some minty gum.
Our house is set up kind of funny. It has a front door and a side door into the kitchen. Everyone uses the side door. Everyone. In the off chance someone did use the front door, I set up a little welcome table.
I found this little shutter at a thrift shop and painted it a light blue.
In fact, Charlotte helped me paint it one day while Grace was in school. A few apples, a few Hello Kitties and the party favors for all the kids!
Once guests arrived, the skies parted and we were able to set up the bounce house outside!
We bought this a few years ago and it has been the best money we've ever spent. It's amazing how kids never get tired of bouncing.
You can see the back of Grace's dress that I made!
While the kids were outside, burning off steam, the adults were inside munching on appetizers and having a cocktail...or two.
I blew up a ton of balloons and threw them all over the play room - another hit!
The kids were totally content running from the playroom back to the bounce house. They could have done it for hours I think.
Balloons just never get old!
Warning - pictures get very thin here! As a great deal of our guests - all family - travel from out of town and rearrange their lives to attend a three year olds birthday party, we try to make it as adult friendly as possible. Liquor, wine and dinner! As this was going to be a picnic, we had flank steak, pasta salad, fruit salad and a quinoa salad. For the kids, we had cheese pizza.
The kids all sat together at a table and the lure of the bounce house had the fast eaters scarfing down their dinner. In order to keep them seated, we had them go around the table and ask each other questions. That bought a little time because a special visitor was on her way!
After dinner was complete, Hello Kitty surprised the kids with an appearance. Unfortunately, no pictures were taken during this time. Heartbreaking because the look on my niece's face was priceless. She didn't know whether to laugh, cry or run away screaming!
Hello Kitty moved the party to the play room where she had hidden little apples filled with candy inside. Click here to see what they looked like. The kids were to find the apples hidden around the room - like an easter egg hunt. Not sure what it is about us Boyajians, but we can't seem to keep track of where we hide the eggs. Enough apples were hidden so that each child could find five. After searching and searching, we finally called it quits - of course, I found all the remaining apples the next day - and Hello Kitty handed out bags of treats to each participant! It kills me that I don't have any pictures! UGH!
Hello Kitty keeps a busy schedule and she had to move on to her next party! So we had the kids head downstairs for cake and ice cream while Hello Kitty made her departure.
Everyone knows that guests are supposed to wear party hats while the birthday girl blows out candles. So I made these party hats for all the kids and I forgot to have them wear them while we sang Charlotte Happy Birthday! It's so hard to remember all the details in the heat of the moment.
The special thing about these party hats is that the little flower yo-yo came off and could be worn as a headband! I absolutely love the idea of a party hat with an alternative purpose and I LOVED making these!
My niece in all her party hat glory!
After cake, we had all the kids huddle with Great Grandma Jean. This was only the second time, all the great grandkids were together so a picture was in order. Unfortunately, none of my pictures turned out.
I did get a silly one of Charlotte and Great Grandma.
Such a goofball!
We opened gifts, said our thank yous and when the last guest left, started the clean up!
Another birthday party, come and gone. So much work but worth every minute seeing the kids and guests enjoy themselves.
Thanks to all those that came to make Charlotte's third birthday so special!
Hope you had as much fun attending as we did hosting! Until Grace's 5th (gulp - better get cracking) birthday party....
If anyone captured any great pictures while at the party, I would love to see them! I clearly failed in the photography department this time!