What a perfect day for a party in the park!
We celebrated Kennedy's 4th birthday with a cherry picnic themed party on Sunday - the weather was beautiful and sunny, our dear friends and family were there to help celebrate, kids ran around and had a lot of fun and there were lots of yummy sweets and treats - a special day for a very special girl.
These two just put a smile on my face...they are such sweet friends and were tied at the hip during the entire party. I am thankful for Lauren and her sweetness, she has been such a good friend to Kennedy.
Pops and Nana were here to celebrate and we managed to snap a quick picture - there were so many more photos I wish I had thought to take, but the kids just wanted to play! (and to be honest, I didn't have my camera much, either. thankfully my thoughtful friend, Kathy, took pictures during the hectic start of things)
Mama and the birthday girl
Kennedy was so sweet during all of the preparations for the party. She'd come into the dining room, where I had all of my supplies and exclaim, "Mama, my party is going to be sooooooo cute! I can't wait!" I know the details weren't totally lost on her and I had so much fun putting it all together. I love hunting for ideas and then adapting them to fit our party.
I actually made the cupcakes...and they were good! Snickerdoodle cake (recipe here) with cinnamon butter cream frosting - yum! Kathy had stopped by the day before the party and frosted these babies in minutes. She has quite the talent for cake and cookie decorating - thanks, friend! Our talented cake maker made a few extra fondant cherry toppers and then I made the picks from the printables (link here - this is an awesome resource for party ideas and supplies) that I had purchased for the party.
a local baker made this delicious cake (Kennedy chose strawberry cake with fresh strawberry butter cream on top and chocolate cake with cookies and cream butter cream on the bottom) and adapted the design from a picture that I found on Pinterest. I was thrilled with how it turned out. Thank you, Stacey Kim!
A basket of chocolate chip cookies for the guests to take home with them - I am quite sure my friends were thrilled by the amount of sweets and sugar that went home with the kids. Sorry!
A little candy bar and favors for the kids
The favors caused me all kinds of headaches! I had purchased the tins online but didn't attempt to fill them until the day before the party. Unfortunately the tins were designed for dry goods/food and leaked when filled with bubbles. I kind of panicked, sent my dad to Home Depot to try to find some sort of sealant and attempted to fix the problem. Fail. Two layers of spray and the things still leaked! We managed to fix them enough for the party, and I hope they didn't make a tremendous mess for everyone. The idea was so darling and I was really upset that it didn't work out as planned. For the older boys, I filled the tins with water balloons instead of bubbles - no leaking that way!
The dessert table
A cherry pie (another small fiasco there - I attempted to make cute mini cherry pies, but we couldn't get them out of the muffin pan without them breaking - so on to plan B and a normal sized pie, which no one ate :), marshmallow pops, the cake, chocolate dipped Oreo pops and the cupcakes. As I said, there was definitely no shortage of sugar.
my talented mother-in-law, Diane, sewed the cute table runners that I used on the tables
Kyle helped with the crafting, as well, and put together the back drop using some old pieces of wood found in our garage. He stapled on burlap and then we strung the banners and hung the wreath. I loved how it turned out.
And here's a look at our friends who helped us celebrate:
Ethan loved the balloons!
Lauren, Kennedy and Audrey enjoying lunch
some of the boys
Samuel, Ryan, Carter and Andrew
Cheri and Eliana
Trisha and Jim found the comfy chairs
(thank you both for helping to set up!)
Auntie Val and Brady
Kelton, Stellan and Sarah
Miss Emery enjoying a treat
Gracie trying an Oreo pop
The kids had fun playing with a giant parachute
The park was a perfect place for a large party...minus the logistics of getting everything transported and set-up, I would say it was perfect. There was plenty of space for all of the kids to run and play, various activities for different interests and lots of tables for the adults.
dear friends, thank you so much for all of your help!
Shannon, Kathy, Rachel and Jen
Kaitlin matched the party perfectly!
pretty birthday girl
I love this picture - Kyle and Dan were the biggest kids of them all, running around, dodging balloons and going after one another. Here they were antagonizing poor Rachel as she tried to change Joshua's diaper. Meanies! I love that they had so much fun and were enjoying themselves, too.
This picture so perfectly sums up the water balloons - equal parts smiles and tears. I should have done a better job setting up ground rules (especially for Carter) before we brought the balloons out. There were tears from pain and hurt feelings but also a lot of squeals of delight.
a very happy girl who loved every bit of her party
Opening some presents after the party - many lovely gifts made for a very happy girl.
And this is how we ended our afternoon - relaxing and enjoying some much needed margaritas on the porch!
I couldn't have pulled this party together without all the help from my mom - she is a worker, I tell you, and was always ready to tie bows, cut paper, iron table cloths or make cookies. Without her help, I would have been a mess. Also, thanks to everyone (Kathy, Shannon, Diane & Ken, Trisha & Jim, Rachel, Lindsey Carrie, Dad, Kyle) who offered help in various ways both during the party planning and prepping stages and during the hectic morning of set-up for the party. I appreciate everyone so much and I am grateful for your helping hands!