The festivities started Thursday with a princess-themed party for Tory and her friends. This was Tory's biggest birthday wish; she couldn't wait to have her school friends over to our house to celebrate. My goal was to keep things low-key, so I took Tory to the party aisle at Target a few weeks ago and let her pick out all the princess party decor her heart desired. I also let Tory invite four friends to her party and she chose Sophie, Eloise, Abigail and Mya from her ECFE preschool class. (Actually, she wanted to invite the entire class but I wasn't about to have 13 four-year-olds in my house!)
The girls played dress-up and decorated foam crowns at the party, then ate lunch together. For food, I served peanut butter and jelly sandwiches cut into the shape of princess crowns with carrots & hummus, string cheese and apple juice.
I bought princess-themed cupcakes from the grocery store bakery and gave all the girls princess bags filled with Dollar Spot party favors. It was seriously the most effortless birthday party I've ever hosted. I'm not sure why I kill myself over unique themes and handmade decorations when character parties are SO EASY. *Note to future self*
The best part, of course, is that Tory was delighted and I later heard her little girlfriends had a fantastic time at the party as well.
Saturday, we hosted a second birthday party at the lake for our family and cabin friends. Tory's birthday usually coincides with Labor Day weekend so it always made sense to host her party at the cabin when my Nebraska family came to visit. Labor Day (and the long holiday weekend that accompanies it) falls a week later this year, so my Nebraska family wasn't able to make the drive up to Wisconsin, but Andi's parents and sister were, along with our cabin friends Joe & Lisa, Oscar & Deanna, Krista & Josh, and our friends Val & Brionn who are renting a cabin on the lake this summer.
Andi's sister Lindsay gave Tory an adorable watermelon dress earlier this summer, and it gave me the inspiration to throw a pink & green watermelon BBQ for her birthday party.
Tory and I handmade party invitations from pink and green construction paper in a method I wouldn't recommend to anyone. It took SEVERAL afternoon rest times and lots of patience, cutting and glueing to assemble invitations I wasn't very pleased with in the end. Tory and I also made watermelon banners like these for the party and they turned out really cute. I'm now realizing I never snapped a picture of them hanging up at her party.
We served pulled pork sandwiches, corn on the cob, watermelon slices, chips & dip, pink lemonade and pink and green cupcakes. By far the SIMPLEST party menu I've done, and everything was a big hit!
Tory, sandwiched between her favorite cabin friends, Linden and Hannah
Buddy's FAVORITE food this summer is corn on the cob!
The kids helped Tory open birthday presents, and then everyone sang 'Happy Birthday' to the birthday girl.
Tory had such a fabulous few days celebrating her birthday, she was actually pretty wiped out on her actual date of birth. Andi's parents hung around the cabin with us on Sunday and Tory spent most of her real birthday laying low and playing (toy) hospital with Grandma Janie.
Andi and I decided to take the kids to the Minnesota State Fair on the drive home from the cabin Sunday afternoon since it was on the way home (sort of), so Tory ended her 4th birthday at the Great Minnesota Get Together. We only stayed for a few hours, but long enough to eat a few fried things on a stick, and grant Tory's wish of riding on the ferris wheel.