(This is my first time entering The Pinterest Challenge! Be sure to check out the talented hostesses, Sherry at Young House Love, Katie at Bower Power, Cassie of Hi Sugarplum, and Erin at The Great Indoors, and go scope out their great Pinspirations!)
Oh. My. Gosh.
I had so much fun this weekend. Scratch that. I’ve had so much fun over the past FEW WEEKS, planning His Majesty’s 2nd Birthday party.
My party planning board is one of my favorites, because it not only gives me ideas for parties, but it makes me want to throw parties. Lots of parties. When I started pinning, the party board was the first board that I got going on, and the barnyard theme stuck out immediately as a great idea for His Majesty’s birthday. And barnyard/farm is such a popular toddler theme that you can definitely reach information overload, trying to filter through ideas, so it was nice for me to have a place to keep all of the great ideas that I wanted to try in one place, to refer back to.
March is a tough time to plan a party with an outdoor theme. Some might say it is a bad time to try to plan a party with an outdoor theme. But the truth is, where I live, it could be 75 degrees in March, or it could snow. And while it would suck to play an outdoor party and have it snow, it would suck to stick with an indoor party because you were afraid, only to wake up to a perfect Carolina blue sky and 75 degree temps. NC springs are glorious (minus the thick coating of pollen, but hey, that’s what Elderberry syrup is for), and
I wanted His Majesty wanted a petting zoo.
So, I planned a party with outdoor themed elements, mainly a traveling petting zoo, but I figured we’d spend some time indoors, too, playing games and such. As luck would have it, rain was forecast the entire day of the party. My friends started giving me sympathetic looks about mid week, when it became clear that I was going to have to do something with the party plan. I realized that I had to suck up the idea that farm animals were going to end up in my garage, and as much as that horrified me in theory, it wasn’t too bad when it became a reality. It actually didn’t rain the entire time of the party, but it was wet out from rain all that morning, so we put the large animals in the garage, just in case the sky opened up. The smaller animals were penned in on the grass, and it worked out perfectly. Turns out, these mobile petting zoos know what they are doing like “whoa”. They put down a little outdoor carpet in the garage, and kept a big brooms handy, plus, they cleaned up everything. Seriously, when they were gone, I couldn’t tell they’d ever even been here. Very professional people. I was so pleased.
So, crisis averted, thanks be to God, and the show went on.
Want to see what we ended up with?
Gingham tablecloth made by stitching the cut edges of a 36 inch by 80 inch piece of fabric; Mason jars decorated with gingham ribbon, filled with crayons and flowers; free farm animal coloring pages; dollar store wicker baskets with gingham ribbon hot-glued for accent; Metal pails from Hobby Lobby filled with apples; Barn Door wall decor from Oriental trading company. Folding chairs rented for something ridiculously cheap like $1 each/day.
Cow print fabric and gingham ribbon banner, with felt letters; Accented with wooden farm animal accents from Hobby Lobby.
"2" Photo collage, done with the help and awesome innovation of my super smart husband. Just wait until I show you how he helped me do this. The man is a problem solver.
Streamers and string of balloons hung by my adorable (and previously mentioned) husband.
Another angle of the streamers and balloons.
Table covered with fabric leftover from making the tablecloths; Lollipops covered in barns/farm animals made from cardstock in mason jars filled with popcorn kernels; Barn themed gift boxes from Hobby Lobby filled with farm animal stickers and tattoos from Oriental Trading Company, and farm themed activity book from Hobby Lobby;
Barn cake and cupcakes made by a lovely woman who donates the proceeds of her cakes to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Talk about a noble cause.
Veggie platter with tomato, cucumber, bell peppers, carrots, and celery with hummus and french onion dip; Fruit platter with grapes, blueberries, cantaloupe, and oranges; Bite sized pigs in a blanket.
Sandwich Ring from our grocery store deli with Dukes Mayo and Comeback Sauce; PBJ and sandwich thins;
Cow print cake pops and white chocolate covered marshmallows. Cake pops, YUM. White chocolate covered marshmallows... marshmallow-y... I guess I forgot that I really don't like marshmallows, and as it turns out, neither do my kids.
Pink "Pig" Pom Pom Poppers and "pig pen"
Sensory play "scavenger hunt"-- I had no idea that even the big kids would enjoy this so much!
Ribbon pull bar pinata from The Paper Factory.
And, my favorite part of the day, playing with the animals! They had traditional farm animals, like goats, a donkey and sheep, and then a lizard, a ferret, a duck, several bunnies, an Alpaca, guinea pigs, a tortoise, a pot bellied pig, and a few snakes, like this ball python. They had a hedge hog, but he was sick, so they didn’t bring him. Bummer. Maybe next time. The animals were all super friendly (two of the bunnies even tried to get extra friendly, if you know what I mean), and the kids were able to handle them and pick them up at will.
The pig was my personal favorite.
Whew! There was certainly a lot of pinning going on for His Majesty’s barnyard bash. Take a look at some of the ideas that inspired this Pinsanity:
The Invitations, decorations and Table-scape were (p)inspired by:
Shin Dig Diva (pin and pin)
Hostess Blog (pin)
The Celebration Shoppe (pin)
Live Smile Celebrate (pin)
Sara’s Party Perfect (pin)
The photo collage (p)inspiration was from Persnickety Prints
The Cake/cupcake (p)inspiration was from Disney Family Fun
The farm animal lollipops were (p)inspired by this pin and this pin and also this pin
The Pom Pom Poppers were (p)inspired by Fish Out of Water (pin) and Come Together Kids (pin)
Pig Pong was (p)inspired by Pen n’ Paper Flowers
Covered Marshmallow “Moo Pops” were (p)inspired by Catch My Party
The Farm Play Sensory Scavenger Hunt was (p)inspired by Counting Coconuts
The fabric birthday banner was (p)inspired by many of the blogs that helped me choose the decoration and tablescape, , but the tutorial that helped me lay out my plans is from Martin Family Living (pin)
And the Petting Zoo was hosted by Kiddie Kritterz out of Pilot Mountain, NC. They are the nicest folks we’ve met in a long time, they arrived on time, cleaned up EVERYTHING, and were a joy to work with. I highly recommend you give them a call if you’re looking for a mobile petting zoo or pony rides.
I’d also highly recommend you have awesome friends attending who will help you move the party along and keep track of all of the kids in various stages of activity throughout the event. My friends are so amazing. If we happen to have the same friends, you know how lucky you are.
And that’s the story on how a whole lot of pins became one super fun 2nd birthday party!
What are some of the fun party themes you’ve been pinning?