Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Mickey Mouse Clubhouse 2nd Birthday!

My son's birthday party was this weekend.  Normally once a party or shower is over I feel relieved to have it behind me and start crafting for the next one but I'm really sad his 2nd birthday is over.  I was looking back on pictures of my little guy from his first year and started tearing up.  It seems like forever ago since he was born and yet like it was just yesterday at the same time.

We did a Mickey Mouse Clubhouse theme this year and I set a challenge for myself.  To have a birthday party with food, cake, favors, and decorations with a budget set at $50.  Why did I do this you ask,  it seems everything nowadays is getting bigger and bigger, that includes birthdays.  I've seen some on tv, talked to friends and family members as they have been in the midst of party planning and i've heard mentions of decorations alone costing over $60, cakes $80 or more and entire parties costing in the hundreds, my mouth hits the floor every time.  If there is one thing I want to teach my son as he grows up it's to appreciate simplicity and the value of a dollar.  I could have spent more than the $50 I alotted myself but why?  If I can get the party I want for Grant and have all the things I know he will love, why spend a fortune that could be put towards something else for him. 

For food we had a hot dog bar complete with all kinds of toppings for hot dogs, cheese puffs, pretzels, potato wedges,deviled eggs, bacon ranch pasta salad, coleslaw, iced sugar cookies, and chocolate peanut butter cupcakes I made myself.  Most of these items were purchased over the last couple months with coupons.  For example the hot dogs cost all of $0.17/package, the ranch dressing for the pasta salad was $0.39, and the sugar cookies were made from a Betty Crocker sugar cookie pouch I got for free.  I am so proud of the party I was able to put together for the small budget I set for myself and I can honestly say there was nothing I was wishing I had bought or done differently.

Now onto the party.....

Centerpiece #1: All the images were cut with my cricut and attached to kabob skewers with tape.If you don't have a cricut you could easily print similar images off the internet and cut around them.  The bottom is just a wide drinking glass I stuffed 2 sheets of tissue paper down in and then wrapped it with another piece putting a rubber band around the top to hold it in place.
Centerpiece #2: The table runner under this centerpiece runs the lengths of the bar and is just strips of crepe paper streamers sewed together.  If you don't have a sewing machine you could easily tape them together on the bottom and get the same effect.  I cut 1 1/2inch black mickey heads to scatter around the table runner and act as confetti, these were also cut using my cricut.
I loved this cupcake stand and the cupcakes on it.  The stand is 3 boxes (a Special K granola bar box, shipping box, and the lid of a copy paper box) wrapped in red wrapping paper from the dollar store and stacked on top of each other.   One thing I learned with the small budget challenge was to use what you have and make it work.  This cupcake stand is a perfect example of that. The black Mickey images were cut with my Cricut using the Mickey and Friends cartridge.  I made the cupcake toppers myself using red chocolate from Hobby Lobby and a Wilton squeeze bottle.  I piped them with the squeeze bottle onto wax paper, put them in the fridge for about 10 minutes then popped them off and put them on the cupcakes with the flat side facing out.
I used some items we already had to decorate like the stuffed Mickey and the frames that held Grants 2 year pictures and subway art. 2 board books I found at the Target dollar spot are placed on either side of Mickey.
I made the birthday banner out of cardstock and fabric.  I cut the cardstock pennants with my cricut as well as the letters.  Using those as a guide I drew a template for the larger fabric pennants to go behind them.  I used glue dots to attach the letters to the cardstock and I stitched the cardstock to the fabric.  I then made my own bias tape to attach them all at the top and stitched it as well.  I was so excited with how this banner turned out and how well it went with the party without screaming "Mickey Mouse".

I made the character images with my cricut. I adored the mickey/circle garland.  I used primary colored cardstock, cut the Mickey heads and circles out with my cricut them stitched them together.  The effect was perfect and Grant loved them.  I can say the only thing I hate about making homemade decorations is I can't bear to throw away all my super cute hard work haha.
I purchased this blue bucket at the Dollar Tree for the ice and water bottles.  I showed the water bottle labels I made here.  I don't buy a bunch of 2 liters of sodas any more because the cost tends to add up & in the end your left with half a dozen 2 liters 1/2 full, and they end up going to waste.  Instead I have started making a large pitcher of homemade strawberry lemonade and sweet tea.  I figure anyone who doesn't like either of those can choose the bottled water.
I used the Mickey/circle garland I made out of cardstock to drape each of the windows.  After draping them I felt they were too plain and I immediately thought of window clings.  I used to love those when I was a kid.  I used my cricut and cut Mickey heads in 7 1/2 inches and 4 1/2 inches and stuck them to the windows.  Grant kept walking over to the windows and pointing saying "Mi, Mi" (Mickey).  After the party I took all the small colored ones and stuck them on the wall next to my son's bed, he loved it.
I was trying to get a better view of the table runner I made with crepe paper streamers and confetti in the picture above.  We also used water bottles as balloon weights.  I forgot to tell my husband to get weights when he went to pick them up so we improvised.
 For a game we had Mickey Mouse bowling I made with empty soup cans and cardstock.  Grant loved stacking them up and throwing the ball to knock them all down.  He hasn't quite gotten the hang of rolling the ball.
I made treat bags for the 2 little guests we had.  I debated for a long time on what to put in them and eventually decided to put in Grant's favorite goodies.  So inside were fruit snacks, lucky charms breakfast bar, homemade tootsie rolls, and a Minnie Mouse board book (because both were girls).
I posted about the Invites here.
I had so much fun planning, preparing, and putting together this birthday and I couldn't be happier with the results.  Grant had a great time with people he loves celebrating his 2nd year and that's the important thing.
Happy Birthday My Little Man!

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