This was Burl's year to have a birthday party. Some of you may know that I LOVE decorating for parties, but it can get expensive doing multiple parties a year. Plus, I don't want my kids getting TOO spoiled on big birthdays. So the rule in our house is that we alternate who gets the party each year. Because of various circumstances over the years this was actually Burl's first time to have a big party.
His actual birthday was on a Wednesday and we planned his party for Saturday of that week.
We had a small celebration on Wednesday. I put up a little banner that I already had stored away and we did fun things during the day like go swimming at the springs, went out for ice cream, and had biscuits and gravy for dinner (per his request).
Since it was a church night and I have to teach a class on Wednesdays we didn't have time to open all of his gifts before hand. So once Robert got home from work and we had eaten dinner he got to pick one small gift to open before church.
They're always asking me to get them these big ol' "gourmet" lollipops when we're at the store and I always tell them no. So he was excited to get one in his gift bag. :D
The child loves the Florida Gators for some reason. He doesn't even really understand football, he just thinks the point is to keep falling down with the ball. (Personally, I agree with him.) But he loves them just the same and always loves anything orange and/or blue, so I got him his own little Gators shirt. He was so cute hugging it to him!
Of course he wanted to wear it to church that night! We even took along a chocolate cake with orange frosting to share with the kids for snack time.
Back home from church, sweaty and tired, but SO excited to open more presents!
We also got him this little construction kit where he can build and take apart and re-build 3 different vehicles and it has a little remote control with it. He loved it and had to build one right then! He also got a new T-ball bat and some balls which he was also really excited about.
For his party on Saturday we did a construction theme. Months ago I asked him what kind of cake he wanted for his birthday and he and I perused Pinterest for ideas and when he saw this one that was it, that was the one he wanted!
So that's how we came up with our construction theme. :)
We found this cute set of plates at Hobby Lobby and that's what I based everything around.
Instead of sending out paper invitations, I designed this one on the Red Stamp app and texted digital ones instead. They're free to design and free to send, that = cheap! :D
I kept the decor fairly simple, but still fun.
The buffet was set up to be the gift area. I got mylar balloons from the dollar store instead of latex balloons because they hold their air so much better and they're the same price. It saved me from having to run back to town the morning of the party to get balloons filled. I bought them the day before and they were still just fine. The same would not have been true of latex balloons. I was very thankful for my moment of genius when I thought of this. :D
In the windows on either side of the buffet I placed a couple of his construction toys that he already had. Cheap decor!
On another wall I made this little photo op area.
On the dining room table I set out little hard hats for each of the kids. They were pretty flimsy, but the kids didn't seem to care. We also found the little traffic cones at Hobby Lobby. I used a black tablecloth folded up as a runner down the middle and just put a strip of caution tape in the middle of that to mimic a road.
The centerpiece was his beloved cake that he had talked about for months! :)
It was a bit of a comedy of errors to get it to this point, but he and I were both happy with how it turned out in the end.
He already had all the little toys and they made the perfect cake toppers. I found the traffic cone candles on Amazon.
Burl spotted the candy rocks while we were at Hobby Lobby and he was SO excited when I told him they would be perfect for his cake!
I set up the bar as the food area and put this cute little banner on the front. Again, I kept it really simple. I had seen a lot of cute ideas for themed food for this type of party, but I decided against the extra stress and the extra cost that would involve. Robert grilled hot dogs, I made baked mac-n-cheese, and we had chips to go with it. It was perfect and stress free.
I found the cute little orange caddy at Winn-Dixie for $1.50 and it was just perfect to hold the utensils.
For the goody bags I bought these little bags at Dollar Tree, 3/$1, and I used a paint marker and drew the construction lines and "thank you" on them. It was done rather hastily at sort of the last minute and they certainly were far from perfect, BUT...they were still cute.
They each had a can of silly string, a few pieces of candy, and a rubber eraser shaped like a dump truck.
The drink table sported a couple more of his toys that he already had.
We set up both of the little tables and they had a blast eating and being silly together.
I only planned one game and I'm glad I did it that way. They had so much fun just playing with all of Halie and Burl's toys and it gave me a chance to just sit and chat with the other adults instead of running around trying to coordinate everything.
The one game came from an idea I saw, on Pinterest of course, lol! It worked out perfectly because Burl already had a large floor puzzle that was construction themed. We kicked the kids outside for a little bit (Robert ended up piling them all into the Kawasaki Mule and taking them for a fun ride) while we adults hid all 60 pieces of the puzzle around the house. When they came back they had such a blast hunting for the pieces and then working together to complete the puzzle.
I told them that they had to finish it in 15 minutes or they wouldn't get any cake. One little boy didn't realize I was joking and part way through I heard the poor little guy worriedly say, "Hurry up guys or we won't get any cake!" I had to confess and set his mind at ease. :)
Even the oldest boy there, who originally claimed he wasn't playing any games, got in on it and had way more fun than he would probably admit to, lol!
After some play time it was time for cake.
I added his number "4" candle to it. It took him a minute or so to get all the way around the cake to blow them all out. : )
I really wanted to do the same awesome thing to the inside layers as the lady had done to the inspiration cake, but because of my comedy of errors I ran out of time.
I had to settle for alternating yellow and black layers. Funny thing, Burl had talked about that cake for months, but then didn't even want a piece of it. He was way too excited to open his presents!
Lots of new monster truck toys and some new Planes toys. He was in heaven!
A big present sent from Nana & Papaw.
Friends having fun helping him open it.
A floor play mat to drive his car collection on! This thing is huge and he absolutely loves it! (So does Halie!) Thank you Nana & Papaw!
At the end of the party they each took their can of silly string from their goody bags and we went outside for a silly string fight.
Some of the smaller ones weren't too sure about it at first, but once they figured out how to make it spray they had a lot of fun.
It was fun day for everyone, and I was so glad I decided to keep things pretty simple. I actually had a good time too, and never felt stressed out once the whole day.
Next up, Halie says she wants a horse party for her 8th birthday next year. I guess I need to practice up on my cake making skills. :D