March 16th was Penelope’s 2nd birthday! I can’t believe my little buggy has grown up so fast! She is so much fun these days. Lately she has realized that she was on the cusp of the big #2 and has been insisting she can do everything on her own. “no help mama! no help!” she will reply when I try to help her with any number of things including getting dressed, changing her diaper, going down steps. It’s really fun to see her growing in to such an amazing little girl, but at the same time she doesn’t realize that she still is very little and still does need mama’s help. The most ironic thing to me is how once you are older (such as myself) and want the help from your mama, she may no longer be there to give it. Try explaining that to a 2 year old.
Her actual Birthday
Penelope spent her actual birthday with her Dada and I. We headed out to Red Robin for lunch, The Learning Palace for a gift of her choice (she chose these amazingly cute little Meerkat babies by Calico Critters) , Ikea for an art table and chairs for her room… then on to frozen yogurt! We ended the exciting trip with a trip to Safeway where she picked out a giant Hello Kitty balloon larger than her whole body! It was a super fun day full of spoiling my favorite little girl.
Her Birthday party
On Saturday the 17th we threw her a giant birthday party. It was held at Cory’s work, which is a super awesome, open loft-type of space. There were so many people there that I felt a bit overwhelmed but it was fun and all worked out in the end. Penelope chose Dinosaur Train (PBS cartoon) as her theme. If you know me well, I LIVE for things like planning themed birthday parties! Once she decided on her theme, I sat down and got right to work.
The birthday girl MUST look very special on her big day. Since I enjoy sewing so much, I couldn’t buy a store bought outfit to put her in…and I wanted to follow the birthday theme to make it fun for her, so I made her a Buddy the T-Rex dress! I even made her baby doll a matching dress for her birthday photo session.
The Decorations and Food
Everything at the party had to follow suit with the dinosaur theme! I made paper flag buntings with dinosaur train pictures on them and strung them up around the venue. They were super easy to make! I simply cut out some triangles of scrapbook paper, glued on the printed out pictures that I purchased from a wonderful seller on Etsy and then sewed all the flags together to form a bunting.
I purchased plain orange paper bags from Party City and using some glue, scissors and scrapbook paper I transformed them in to cute little Buddy the T-Rex characters and filled them full of dino themed goodies such as finger puppets, stickers, bubbles and tattoos.
The food was just light finger foods, but I made sure to keep the theme up! The toddler friendly peanut butter and jelly sandwiches were cut into Brontosaurus shapes using my friend’s awesome sandwich cutter.
The cupcakes were the funnest idea to come up with! I had some basic green frosted cupcakes that had white dots and some with spikey blue dinosaur-esque spines, and the most elaborate being little orange Buddy the T-Rex shaped cupcakes! I used a round cake donut, cut off one of the edges, adhered it to the cupcake with frosting then dipped the whole thing in orange tinted, melted frosting. I then used mini oreos, frosting and chocolate chips for the eyes and finished off with blue frosting stripes. I was left with a cute little Buddy face staring back at me!
Being that it was Penelope’s 2nd birthday, and small toddlers have the attention spans of an amoeba on a gnat, I decided to keep the games and activities light. My awesome friend baked off tons of plain, yummy sugar cookies and I set up a table where the kids could decorate them with frosting and sprinkles. I pretty much had to pry Penelope away from the cookie table!
Next to the cookies I set up a coloring station with tons of crayons and printed pictures of Dino Train characters that I found on the PBS website.
Lastly, I found plastic bones at Party City and I hid them around the venue and told kids to hunt for dino bones while they were playing at the party.
That’s a Wrap!
In all, the party was a major success. Lots of fun was had, many presents were opened and Penelope was pooped by the end of the day. I can’t wait to see what challenge she has in store for me next year!