It seems springtime is birthdays galore and believe it or not, I don't think we've had many posts about birthdays on RWAV. This past weekend, we celebrated our twins' FIRST birthday. We wanted to celebrate the day they were born, one year of survival as parents of multiples and also make it special for our oldest daughter who has been very patient with us--all while keeping the cost down and "getting the biggest bang for our buck."
Planning a small party for twins was a little different than my planning for one especially since we are blessed to make sure both genders are duly represented. :) Since our twins were born on Valentine's Day and we LOVE cupcakes, we decided to go along with the cupcake theme b/c cupcakes seem to incorporate Valentines and birthdays.
I'm sure many of you ladies have planned flawless birthday parties that would WOW me big time and how I'd love your tips! I'm only entering my fourth year of birthday party planning experience so this newby is still learning. I thought I'd share the lessons I took away from this celebration just in case it will benefit your future birthday celebrations.
ALWAYS, always, always order your cakes to be picked up one FULL day (maybe even a day and a half) before the party to leave room for error and repair time! Trust me on this one. Our Karen can attest to this as well. I learned from her a long time ago (click here for a gooood laugh) and she was wiiiiiise beyond her years!
If you live in the region where Harris Teeter's are located, they provide you with a custom 6 inch "patty cake" (aka smash cake) for your child's first birthday. They even provided one for each of the twins making two free patty cakes. Bless them. If you don't live near HT, it never hurts to ask the bakery at your fav grocery store.
A couple of my friends are wonderfully impressive cake bakers (cough, cough...Donna) and amaze me with their ease of creating amazing cakes for special occassions. This would not be a strength of mine or something that comes easily (how I wish). In fact, it completely stresses me out. Therefore, I have become a big fan of the ole cupcake cake which looks like a cake but is really cupcakes underneath. For this birthday, we were even able to do a cupcake shaped cupcake cake. The stripes on the bottom were vanilla and the white part up top were chocolate cupcakes.
VistaPrint is your BFF (best friend forever)-invitations, banners, magnet party favors. In case I've never mentioned it (ha!), I big fat heart VistaPrint! Just be sure to order at least 21 days prior so you can pay the cheaper shipping.
The heart wreath craft is my other new BFF. Any future occassion=heart wreath craft will be implemented in some shape or fashion. Here is how I milked it for all it was worth for the cupcake birthday. Can't beat a CUTE and inexpensive decoration!
Having a "candy bar" really makes a great party favor and it just looks soooooo happy sitting there with all of it's colors (special thanks to Dolly for this idea). It was a not only a hit with the kids but adults, too. I might also want to do this for every occassion. Matter of fact, it's still up and I wish people would start scooping away b/c we have candy coming out the wazooooo. Oh....and don't include little things of sprinkles for the children to take home b/c they WILLLLLL get the lid off and it WILLLLL make a mess in their paren't car if not before.
Have someone assigned to the simple task of taking pictures for you b/c you will be busy and most likely will not. We were blessed to have a sweet girl do this for us. However, all of the above pictures happen to be from my IPhone for some reason.
Set up as much as you can the day before so you can enjoy "the day of" with the most important reason for the party--your children.
Be sure you and your hubs (or helpers) kinda talk over a "flow" for how you envision the party going. This way everyone is on the same page and you can each make sure things keep moving despite the excitement. This will also help keep your guests from standing around with awkward quiet moments and forced to say dumb things like "soooooo....how bout those Panthers?" :)
Just know that probably one or two things most likely will go wrong or just not meet your expectations. Go ahead and decide you are just going to be OK with it. When it happens, rollllll with it, baby. Shake it off. It won't matter by the next birthday party and if nothing else, it will make a funny memory.
Take a deeep breath and ENJOY celebrating. It is a gift from the Lord!
Now, I've been trying to twist Donna's arm to share some of her amazing cake creations for those of you that are cakemakers and would enjoy the ideas. :) She's humble and doesn't like to brag so maybe ya'll can help me out. Also, we'd love to hear some of your traditions or helpful celebration tips. Do Share. We'd especially love to hear some of your favorite party themes and ideas. I love how we can learn from each other!