We had a blast last weekend at Colin’s If You Give a Mouse a Cookie SLASH sport-themed birthday extravaganza. And by extravaganza, I mean a couple dozen of our closest friends hanging out at the park, enjoying the great weather and gorging on cookies, cake and brunch. The dual theme really fell by the wayside, with focus more on fun and friends (and really, isn’t that how it should be?). Everything went off without a hitch, and most important, Colin was surrounded by so many people who love him and care for him dearly. And he ate his weight in sugar (*almost*) and had a blast.
My parents and I arrived early to set up, and then Mr. Confetti arrived with Colin right when the party began. It was amazing to watch his reaction when he saw the baseball balloons, the inflatable basketballs and hoop, and all of the sports themed decor. Our friends had more fun looking at my two decoration projects: a chalkboard with all of his stats and interests and a giant photo collage of the number 2 with pictures from the past year. Both were labors of love that I intend to keep – maybe they will end up as decorations for a Bar Mitzvah or graduation party.
Another thing I learned was that as long as the weather is good, activities are totally unnecessary at a party at a park. I took the time to trace and design If You Give a Mouse a Cookie coloring sheets that went nearly untouched, and once the kids ventured to the playground, even the hoop and balls lost their luster. Last minute, I threw a box of chalk in my stash of party supplies, and that ended up entertaining the kids at the outdoor chalkboard more than anything else.
For food, I brought mini-bagels and cream cheese, homemade mini muffins (adapted from this recipe), a huge egg and sausage casserole (majorly adapted but originally inspired by this recipe), fruit salad, about a zillion homemade cookies (made from this recipe and this recipe) and a baseball cake from our local grocery store. We had way more than enough, and I am glad I did everything myself, because not only was I able to manage it inexpensively, but it seems inevitable that people are distracted by the fun and don’t eat nearly as much as you’d expect.
We rented a room at the park and were told that they strictly adhered to their capacity rules (and the room’s capacity was 25). So I figured that if I kept it to maximum 25 adults, the pee-wees associated with them could sneak in at their knees. Because of this, I was super conservative with our invitation list, and in the end, I wish we had invited a handful of other friends, since they didn’t care at all about capacity once we were there (and since the weather held up, a lot of people were outside and the room sat nearly empty for parts of the time – oh well, live and learn). I kept our list restricted to those who Colin knows best, rather than inviting more friends who are closer with me and Mr. Confetti, and in the end, it was great.
It was amazing to see what a difference a year makes. Colin insisted on eating his cake with a fork, he ran from friend to friend without a trace of concern in regards to where mom was in the room, and he was telling all of his guests about how he was so excited for his birthday. When friends asked him how old he is, he insisted, “I’m three!” Not quite, kiddo, not quite. Who knows what our plan will be for birthday number three, but for now, I am so happy that we rang in birthday number two with a fun-filled bash.