My daughter Brooke, who is our 5th child, turned two in May and while a second birthday is not a birthday we throw a big party for, we still wanted to celebrate and make the day special. (Don't you just love the little ones when they discover purses and dress up shoes?)...
Brooke loves loves loves being outside and so we came up with the idea for a "Little Seedling" themed party for her, which was a nice continuation of the English Garden themed first birthday party she had last year. Here she is exploring in Sedona...
Brooke, being the birthday girl got to help me in the kitchen make her birthday cupcakes. Although only two, she loves being included in the whole making and baking process. Does this face say "I"m excited it's my birthday!", or what???
Being environmentally conscious, we chose to keep this party small, not waste money or resources on plastic favors that people tend to throw away anyway, and keep the asthetic clean and natural. We decided to do a tablescape for our main decoration and let the table be the focal point of the party.For the center of the table, we chose to do a cupcake tower, instead of a cake...
For the table scape, I used daisy flower strands that had been used for three previous events, green beads (vase fillers I already had), the cupcake tower, and my garden lanterns. I filled empty glass votive holders with candies in color (green) to match the party. I used the green tablecloth I have had forever and used an older plastic green table cloth as bunting for the windows and framed them in balloons of white and green. As the sun set, the colors of the tablescape changed and we really succeeded in bringing the colors of nature inside for the table and party...
The great thing about this little party was the only thing we had to buy special for it was the little green candies we used as part of the table decor and the balloons; everything else we already had...we just repurposed it, and the result was still a gorgeous table, a fun family party, and tons of memories made.
Since we only had a few guests, we did not do favors (to read my post about great party favors click here). The cost of this party was under $25, proving once again that something can be beautiful and fun without costing alot of money.
I used all decorations that I already had, but you could just as easily do the following to decorate a seedling or garden themed table without spending much money:
Other seedling/garden party ideas...
** cleaning and using terra cotta gardening pots you already have and stacking them in different heights down the table
**use seed packets for decorations or send home as favors (one of my favorite party favors ever!)or send your guests home with a read along book about gardening or being kind to mother earth.
**use this cake recipe for a cute garden themed potted cake...
**planting seeds makes a great party activity that kids of all ages enjoy and costs very little; the seeds they plant in a small terra cotta pot they also decorate can double as their party favor.
You can also check out this "Eco-Friendly Plant a Seed birthday party" from Frog Prince Paperie for more inspiration. FPP's whole party was created from materials found around the house, recycled, or reusable and came it at under $58!
A few final tips on decorating for a party on a budget:
1. What do you already have? Don't be afraid to move stuff from one room to the party room for the party day. Do a walk through of your house and make a list of things you already own that could work into your theme and therefore be worked into the party decor before buying anything new.
2. When purchasing items for birthday decor, look for items that offer one of two things: big visual impact on the cheap (like balloons), or if it is a higher dollar item, can it be used over and over again. The cupcake tower I used for this party is the same one I have used for every holiday and birthday party since purchasing it. It always seems to be perfect for holding either treats, sweets, appetizers, favors or decorations making its original $30 purchase price seem more than worth is as I have owned it for only one year and used it for 5 events so far...
3. Remember people in the end, remember two things most of all: was the food good and were you a welcoming hostess. They remember the decorations after those two things, not before.
Final thoughts...I find that when I throw these smaller more intimate parties, I garner more compliments than when I throw a bigger affair. People love to be inspired and people are always inspired by seeing how less can be more and how more doesn't have to cost a fortune. I also find that people are encouraged when they see common sense in application...i.e. a party for a two year old that did not entail a 30 person guest list, a bouncy, a petting zoo, the death of two trees, and a hundred other things that a two year old is not going to remember.
So our little seedling Brooke turned two...you know, that just doesn't seem possible.
What have been some of your favorite birthday party themes for little ones? Thoughts?
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No Ordinary BlogHop, Sharing Saturdays, Simply Natural Saturdays, For the Kids Fridays, Feature Friday at Blissful and Domestic, Farmgirl Fridays, Shine on Fridays, Friday favorite things, Fridays Nature Table at The Magic Onions, Monday Link Up at The Better Mom, Inspire me Mondays, Titus 2sdays at Time warp Wife, Tip Junkie, A diamond in the Stuff, Financial Friday at The Grant Life.
Also at Whatever you Want Wednesdays, Not Just a Housewife, The Inspiration Board, These Peas Taste Funny Link Up Thursday, Brambleberry Cottage and Repurpose My Life and Crafty Tuesdays.