Disney Cars Lightning McQueen Birthday: {Re}Collected Moments Series

Broadway Grand Prix Birthday Party
As with most boys, ours has had an obsession with Disney Cars, most specifically Lightning McQueen, since he first saw the movie when he was two years old.  When it came time to plan his third birthday party, it was a no brainer.  Faced with all the Pinterest photos of the elaborate games and decorations I could “totally make” to pull off the best Lightning McQueen party ever….the stress induced eye twitching began immediately.  We quickly made the move to host H and three of his best buds at the local go kart track.

The beauty of Broadway Grand Prix is that the entire park and party room are decorated in a racing theme, they have locked in food and party packs, a full arcade, miniature golf, seven kart tracks as well as plenty of rides for toddlers….so that means no cooking or even planning for the food, minimal decorations needed, and the kids would have way more fun than any game or bouncy house I could put in the back yard. Plus, THEY DO THE CLEAN UP. Sold.

Broadway Grand Prix Toddler Rides
The more popular a character is, the more free printables and party goodies at affordable prices are available, and you can easily put your own stamp on them.  His table decorations were a combination of free Disney Cars printables I found on HWTM, packaged Disney Cars table top party decorations and customized signs that I cut and mounted onto various backgrounds.  I made his table runner from $5 a yard Lightning McQueen fabric from Wal-Mart.  {And by “made” I mean by cutting the fabric to 18″ wide then folding the edges under an inch or two and ironing the folded edge.}

Lightning McQueen Birthday Party Table Top Decorations
Finding Lightning McQueen party favors was a breeze.  Painting and coloring books from the Target $1 section, and the rest of the loot I found at The Dollar Store! (Yep, The Dollar Store.)

Lightning McQueen Birthday Party Decoration
I trimmed the cake plates with ribbon and made the cupcake flags from toothpicks and decorative tape.  I made his miniature garland cake topper with bakers twine, lollipop sticks, and decorative tape.  Clearly, he was more interested in his own handy work than mine…

Disney Cars Lightning McQueen Birthday Cake
I customized the VIP lanyards for the Crew Chief and Pit Crew, added a Lightning McQueen sticker, and mounted them to checkered flag paper as a background.  I found the digital file for the background on Etsy and simply changed the scale using my printer properties.

Disney Cars Lightning McQueen Birthday Party
The boy’s party outfit came together easily, I found the checkered suspenders on Etsy, and the rest was already in his wardrobe.

I do have some tips to consider if you are planning a party at your local favorite party place.  Keep the number of guests low for two reasons.  They have a lot more fun if there is just a handful of them.  There is an age/number of guests ratio out there but I don’t know what it is. Secondly, at this age one parent will be staying with each guest and most packages will include each body in the room.  Our package was for twelve, and the birthday boy was free.  We had four children, with one parent each, plus myself, Jeff, and a Nana.   If we hadn’t counted the parents as guests we would have lots of parents standing around not eating (rude) or would have paid a much higher rate for each extra person.

Negotiate the party pack you purchase in order to best fit your guests.  Because of the height requirements, the birthday boy and his crew were not able to ride the big go karts.  The staff gladly increased the number of arcade tokens per guest to accommodate us, maximizing the package we purchased.

Height Requirements 2
Plan the party to start early so the venue will not be as busy, but not too early…I planned the party to start when the doors opened to the park.  So I was standing there with all the decorations, balloons, cake, cupcakes, etc., as well as all the guests when the doors opened.  No one else seemed to mind though.  We had the entire park to ourselves before we moved to the party room.

We had an amazing time with the crew celebrating his third birthday party.  Such an amazing time that he continues to ask for the same birthday party again!

Disney Cars Birthday

I just noticed that I am taking turns in this {Re}Collected Moments Series…first his nursery, then her Tea Party Birthday, now back to the boy for a Disney Cars Lightning McQueen party. {Can you tell I’m a Libra?} Looking forward to another season of birthdays and all the fun fall events.  Cheers!

Tea Party Birthday: {Re}Collected Moments Series

We do most of the prep and planning for the little people’s birthday parties in the summer because they are three weeks apart…in the fall….when there are about a gajillion other things we have going on.  Although neither kid has settled on a firm idea for this year, it’s definitely on the brain.  So it’s the perfect time to {re}collect a past party moment for this series!

Tea Party Birthday
R wanted to celebrate her fifth birthday with “just girls” and asked for a Tea Party at home.  I pitched her the idea of sitting together with five of her friends in little white gloves, dripping with pearls and wearing their favorite dresses, sipping on “tea” from delicate tea cups and eating little tea sandwiches with their pinkies in the air.  She approved of my proposal and promptly set me about making it happen.

The party decorations were simple, I found the perfect little tea party printables from Designed by Maria on Etsy.  Maria was amazing to work with and customized R’s banner for me, as well as made minor tweaks to color and font.  I made tissue paper garland, used lace for the sweet pennant flags, and of lots of roses of course!  (If you missed it, here are my tips for flowers.)

Tea Party Birthday Decor
As her guests arrived, they decorated porcelain tea cups and saucers with markers.  I baked them in the oven at 350 degrees for thirty minutes for the color to set, and had them cool during the party so they were ready to take home with each guest.

Tea Party Birthday, Tea Cup Decorating
They made jewelry and decorated little hand bag totes.  I found all the supplies at Michaels and AC Moore.

Tea Party Birthday Activity
I made each girl a little feather and flower hair piece, then gathered hand fans, rings, necklaces, bracelets and gloves for each little lady.

Tea Party Birthday Dress Up
Once they were all dressed and ready for tea time, they sat like big girls drinking “tea” (strawberry or chocolate milk) from mismatched teacups and saucers I found for a steal on Ebay.  They jabbered on while nibbling sugar laden goodies from macarons to jam filled tea sandwiches off of dessert plates passed down from Jeff’s grandparents.  They consumed so much sugar I was genuinely surprised they stayed seated as long as they did.  I can still hear their sugar induced little giggles!

Tea Party Birthday Table Reduced
They moved on to cake time, and her cake was exactly as I’d pictured it – simple and sweet and girly and pink. And the various size cupcakes with roses on top were equally enjoyed as part of the decor as well as a delicious treat.

Tea Party Birthday Cake
Such a sweet time she and her little friends had. And such a sweet moment to {re}collect!

Tea Party Birthday Hugs
Cheers you guys…pinkies out of course!

Pretty in Pink: A Baby Sprinkle

This sweet little baby sprinkle….so much fun to put together! Events like this are all special and this one was extra special, as it was for our dear friend Kate.  My co-hosts and I have been prepping for weeks, making lists (yay!) and shopping for goodies.  We wanted this brunch to be perfect for our Kate, and to make a moment for her to share with her nearest and dearest.

Kate is classically feminine.  She is ladylike.  She is soft and loving.  She is savvy and confident.  And she seriously has naturally longer eyelashes than any eyelashes you have ever seen in actual nature.  Really, I should have taken a picture so you could see them…but I digress.  This sweet celebration was all pinks, creamy whites, and golds.  There were soft roses, lots of bubbly, and a bit of sparkle…a reflection of Kate’s sensibilities.
Classic, feminine, with a just a hint of modern glam.
Sprinkle {By the way, the “so loved” and “love” signage as well as the small gold vases and pink jars are from Hobby Lobby, the little train cases are from Stein Mart, the large gold vases are from Afloral.  The custom menu signs and personalized champagne labels are by Studio B Labels (follow them on IG @studioblabels, or on Facebook), who just so happened to get a huge shout out by Martha Stewart Weddings and who also just so happens to be another dear friend of mine…..go check out my girl Rachel.  Amazing.  I want to be her when I grow up.  More to come on her and her creative genius later.  Stay tuned.}