With our venue chosen, Sheena determined the layout and we were moving forward with the plans.
Sheena was completing tasks every day the month of the party; it was so exciting to receive progress pictures along the way.
We treated this event like one of our weddings with extensive preparation. We had a reference document complete with the to-do list, layout, day-of timeline, etc. Sheena was ready.
...AND she needed to be.
The venue had a very strict policy for set-up. A small window of time was allocated for decorating and Sheena had planned to have a LOT of decorative elements.
FFWD to party day.
I had the kids' chairs Sheena rented in my truck along with various décor items, crafts and baked goods. Sheena had a lot of large décor items, drinks, platters, boards and more. Her cousin arrived with a car full of balloons and -- well, we just had a LOT of stuff.
We had an hour to set-up. Bear in mind, we had to unload the items, to carry them to the room and to completely transform the space from a Preschool hall to a ONEderland.
The pressure was on. Sheena moved tables to confirm the layout. She then moved on to her top priority, the classroom boards.
The boards were on every wall covered in artwork. NONE of them matched the theme and all of them HAD to be covered without damaging the art. Sheena purchased boards (think science fair project tri-folding boards) and covered the boards well in advance with large glitter snowflakes. It took a total of 15 minutes to hang all of the boards.
Here's a before:
Here's the after:
Remember I told you we rented the soft play room separately from the party room? Well, that meant the guests playing in the soft play room overlapped with set-up in the party area. In other words, Sheena had folks arriving while we were upstairs decorating... meaning, people were looking for the guest of honor's mommy.... Looking = wandering = people seeing the space before it was finished?!
You guessed it; Sheena had to leave set-up shortly after the snowflake wall was hung.
She had to trust the set-up of her baby's first birthday party to her cousin and me. Thank goodness I knew the details from the document but OMG! The pressure was all the way on now.
Sheena passed the task of covering the other board to her cousin, Shameka. She told her of the plan to use silver wrapping paper and fans to cover the large boards behind the food table:
I just love how Sheena glued snowflake Christmas ornaments in the center of the fans to make them fit the theme perfectly.
While Shameka hung the fans, I focused on the wall behind the dessert table. I made a simple birthday banner with pinwheels but realized the weight of the banner would risk tearing the paper and exposing the schoolwork. I decided to remove the sparkle letters and hang them directly to the board covering, white banner paper.
I used some of the leftover silver ornaments to make a few letters pop and I think it turned out perfect. In front of this area, I set-up the dessert display.
I started with a long white table cloth, layered it with the ruffle bed skirt (as I've done a few times) and covered the top of the table's surface with some pretty wrapping paper I found in Sheena's party stuff.
I was ooh-ing and ahh-ing at Sheena's details for the party as I set it all up. She purchased amazing sweet treats... like these snowflake cookies she ordered in both hot pink and purple:
Isn't that wrapping paper lovely?!
Other treats included the cupcakes (mini and full-size),
Peppermint chocolate covered pretzels and even banana snowmen like the ones below:
Everything was so perfect and adorable!
In the above photo, you can really see the treats and the ruffles and the wrapping paper with the sign and - O, did I fail to introduce the STAR of the dessert table?
Islanders, hold your breath. My boo, Misty, out did herself yet again.
Tomorrow, in our Wordless Wednesday post, I'll formally introduce the beautiful cake. For now, however, we'll just admire her from afar.
I used the wrapping paper to cover the top of the hot cocoa bar. It really helped to unify the space. Anyhoo, this bar took a grown-up approach to a childhood treat. Sheena ordered gourmet marshmallows and I used her three-tier server to display them.
Flavors included peach bourbon, s'mores, cookies 'n' cream and ice cubes (peppermint). I didn't get to try them at the party BUT Sheena sent me home with them after the party. I don't know how, but when I added one to my hot cocoa, it created a frothy fluffy foam on top and it was AMAZING! I may have also slipped a peach bourbon into some peach wine on my birthday... what?! Don't judge me.
In addition to the gourmet marshmallows, Sheena had mini 'mallows (with the CUTEST wooden serving spoons):
Handmade coozies to protect hands from burning from holding the hot cups:
Speaking of the coozies, my Barista baby brudder Dave was able to donate Starbucks red cups to the event. Who doesn't love an SB red cup? Trust me, with the beautiful coozies, they were even more fabulous:
Once the drink was made, the hand-stamped wooden spoons were perfect stirrers.
Don't want to use the pretty spoons above? The peppermint sticks and wafer sticks made for yummy stirrers also.
I wanted to be sure this area was set-up perfectly. Sheena had a lot of little details in this space.
The sign reads, "Baby it's cold outside. Grab some hot cocoa to warm up!"
Next to the hot cocoa bar, we set-up the favor table. On it, we placed candy apples and goodie bags. The goodie bags were filled with winter coloring books, snowflake-shaped crayons and a number one chocolate lollipop (in either pink or purple). They were really NICE things for guests to take as they left.
In addition to a cute goodie bag, each child left with a cup... Sheena found the sippy cups at Target before Christmas. She sent friends to scout their neighborhood Target stores to ensure we knew where to go after the Christmas holiday (they were a splurge considering we needed close to two dozen).
Well, the day after Christmas, Sheena called me in a panic - THERE WERE NO MORE SIPPY CUPS AT HER STORE. She had no where NEAR the number she needed and was in a panic. I remained calm (which is SO not like me). I tried to laugh off her freaking out moment but she was serious... she was worried.
I knew what I needed to do. I ran to my Target and found the cups... all the way in the back... marked down... I bought every single cup they had - 20, I believe? We were NOT going to let this party be RUINED because of the missing sippy cups. Plus, Sheena never loses her cool so I knew it was important to her.
Sheena's cousin set-up the kid table and, can I just say, the sippy cups (with the name of each child on them) were a huge hit!
The kids didn't want to lose sight of their cup. Parents who forgot cups were reminded to come back for them... The kids loved the cups and I'm glad we were able to pull it together for them. After all, they were the guests of honor.
Big kids weren't left out either. Their place settings came complete with little milk jugs with chalk board labels for them to write their name:
The adult tables had centerpieces (I filled 2 small square vases with pink roses around each centerpiece). Sheena purchased large wire frame trees for two tables and asked me to create a tall arrangement using silver sticks she purchased from Michael's.
I'll share a tutorial a little later BUT, to give you an idea of its size, here's a pic of the finished product next to Munch:
It looked great on the table and I got a cool shot of the vase filler (two pound bag of beads I purchased from the thrift store for $.99).
Sheena created a HUGE memory board to capture all of MyHoney's first year milestones. She painted a board with purple chalk board paint leftover from her playroom accent wall, printed pictures of her milestones then used chalk and stickers to label each milestone.
I love how creative this was but I cried when she scrolled through the pictures as she described the concept to me.
It was too much to see just how much MyHoney has changed.
Sheena catered most of the event with delicious gourmet treats served in bite-sized portions. She also purchased pinwheel sandwiches from Costco and made individual servings of pasta salad. My favorite dish of the day? Her co-worker's amazing tomato soup!! She served the soup in shot glasses with a small piece of cheesy bread from a local pizzeria; it was delish!
So delish that I took all of the leftovers home.
AGAIN, DON'T JUDGE ME!
All in all, this party was amazing. I was glad we were able to execute Sheena's vision on her behalf. I was also glad to share in the planning of this event, it really warmed my heart to feel a sense of accomplishment when everything was all said and done.
I hope you can appreciate all of the details Sheena used to pull this fabulous event together :)
Stay tuned for more tomorrow!