Now that my little man is officially seven years old (!!!!!), I thought it was about time that I got around to writing about his “most favorite” birthday party (of course, that title is pretty much trasnferred every year). We decided, like last year, to have his birthday about a month early so his friends from school would still be in town and could attend. Oh, and there was the little matter of the surprise trip (which is the main reason I have neglected to write anything since early spring…my tech-savvy nine year old niece can find my blog on her own!!) that was taking place just before his actual birthday, which was this past Sunday.
So, come one, come all to Stitchy-Poo’s 7th Birthday Carnival!!
Pinterest and I started planning the birthday back in January. About a month before the party, I put this digital save the date out on Facebook since quite a few of his guests’ parents are on there, and I wanted to make sure they were aware of the upcoming par-tay. May is, apparently, quite the popular party time.
The carnival admission tickets followed about two weeks later in Thursday folders for school friends and hand-delivered otherwise.
The image used for the save the date was from an Australian site that I now can’t find. I used that image again, hacked it up on the computer and made his ticket invitations.
Finally, after all the planning and shopping and blood, sweat and jellybeans, it was party day!! Now, let me start this off by saying that the days leading to his birthday party were a rainy, stormy mess!! My plan B really was not feasible with the amount of people attending the party, so I was crossing my fingers and any other appendage I could that we’d have a dry Saturday. Even more stressful than that, though, was that our grampa was in the hospital. He was admitted the Monday before the party, and we had thought he’d be out in plenty of time for the party, but he just wasn’t where the doctors wanted him to be. He wanted to be at the party just as much as we all wanted him to be there, and by some miracle, he was discharged about an hour before the party started.
The rain, however, was not so agreeable. Ryan from Kid Zone arrived with the moon bounce, and he had just finished setting it up when the sky started spitting. I could feel the sweat starting as he was telling me what to do in case of a downpour (in case you’re wondering…get the kids out of the moon bounce and unplug and cover the generator). I told him it was in good hands, and we’d hope for the best. Wouldn’t you know it, though, 11:00 hit, the clouds parted and the sun shone for his entire party!!
|A friend from work had a carnival party for her son’s first birthday about a month before Stitchy-Poo’s and let us have a lot of their extra goodies. We used these cute little boxes for balloon weights/center pieces.
|Of course, getting in a little 3DS time while waiting for his guests.
To be honest, I probably could have rented a moon bounce and been done. Haha!! It was definitely a hit with all of the kids, and the crew from Kid Zone almost had to drag them out of it when they arrived to pick up their equipment.
We also had some super low-maintenance, play-it-yourself carnival games and, of course, prizes! In addition to the duck game, we also had a ping pong ball toss, horseshoes and bean bag toss. See…ridiculously easy.
|Yes, our ducks were a little tipsy.
So, prizes. Even though they were out there in the open, every kid played a game before picking a prize. So honest!! Anyway, we had a TON of prizes (and still have a ton leftover) due to my keen sixth sense for Target clearance. If you have the space for a bin somewhere in your garage or home office or whatever, it really pays off to grab all these cute little trinkets when they’re marked down. The kiddos left the party with these fun Batman pens, Cars and Disney Princess dry erase boards, water colors (thank you school supply clearance) and lots more items that can be put to use rather than end up in the crevices in the backseat of your soccer mom mobile with the petrified McDonald’s fries and half melted crayons.
No carnival is complete without face painting!! Stitchy-Poo’s friend’s mom graciously agreed to be our carnival face painter since I had kind of dropped the ball on this aspect, and by the time I was making my phone calls, most of the recommendations I’d received were booked. Luckily, she’s a very talented artist, and she did a great job!!
|Our face painter’s cutie patootie son!
We definitely needed some cute photo ops, and I really lucked out and found this adorable canvas cutout banner on clearance at Hobby Lobby. It was meant to be, as I was in the next city over and went in on a whim and found it sitting all by its lonesome just waiting for me.
Everyone got to play a little dress-up at our “photo booth” inside. A variety of fun props and disguises made for some really great pictures.
Something that I do every year for his birthday is a photo guest book. I include pictures from his life up until the current birthday leaving spaces for friends and family to write notes, draw pictures and wish their happy birthdays. His guests always enjoy flipping through the book, often seeing a shot or two of themselves, and it’s a really sweet keepsake that Stitchy-Poo and I like to look at together from time to time.
And it’s not a party without some sugary deliciousness!!!
In addition to the moon bounce, Kid Zone also includes a snow cone machine and popcorn machine, as well as the supplies (cups, ice, syrup, popcorn, oil, salt, etc.) in the rental fee. Best deal in the metro area!!
Since parties are where I air out my BA in PR (got to put that degree to use somehow, right??), I usually try to stick with the theme, but my little Jedi had been asking for a Star Wars birthday cake for months. And, to be honest, it was a whole lot cheaper than the carnival cake I had in my head. 😉
Oh, but the sugar crash does not end there, my friends, oh no. I had done a candy buffet for my mom’s 50th birthday bash. It was so easy and a real crowd pleaser. I love how colorful they are and how they can be adapted to any theme, so there really was no question. Stitchy-Poo’s Candy Counter was born!
Each guest got a popcorn box and could fill it to the brim with anything they chose. The kids loved it, but I think they grown-ups may have even had more fun filling up on sweet treats.
You may have noticed that I’m actually in some of these pictures!! Crazy, I know. This is because we had a wonderful photographer, Channe from Channe Nicole Photography!!
She took about a million pics, all of which were fantastic! Most of the pics in this blog post are courtesy of Channe Nicole Photography (despite my watermark, which is on all my Picasa pics by default).
It was a GREAT party thanks is HUGE part all the aunts and friends who helped out behind the scenes (like they do EVERY year!!). Stitchy-Poo and I are already scheming up next year’s party, and I can’t wait!!
Thanks, Napkins.com, for loving the party as much as we did and awarding us with Best Decorations!
Jacobson House Native Art Center – Venue
Kid Zone – Moon Bounce, Snow Cone Machine, Popcorn Machine
Channe Nicole Photography – Photography
VistaPrint – Photo Banner
Sam’s Club Bakery – Star Wars Cake and Cupcakes
Snapfish – Guestbook
I’m not a huge fan of Snapfish’s customer service as of the past year or so. While they eventually may resolve the problem, there is a lot of miscommunication and misunderstanding when trying to access help. I had a free credit for a photo book from Snapfish from Disney Movie Rewards, so I went with them on this one.
J.J. Bradford – Face painting