John Deere First Birthday!
The end of May marked the celebration of Heman's First Birthday! Frankly, we are all pleased to have survived the first year! His love is already tractors so it only made sense to have a John Deere themed party. We didn't take nearly enough photos but here are a few thanks to Sarah and our good friend Regina.
We started with amazing invitations from etsy and favor tags to match. The listing has expired on etsy but here is the listing for favor tags. This shop was great to work with and the quality was very good. The invitation stock was very nice quality. Click on the photo to see the etsy shop.
The yellow and green cupcakes turned out great! We made these ourselves. The white ones are filled with chocolate mousse and the chocolate ones filled with marshmallow creme. To get the bold green and yellow frosting colors we used gel food coloring. To actually frost them we used a very large start tip and swirled it from the outside in for a very even and eye appealing look. We used a combination of cupcake stands and white cake stands to display the cupcakes.
Tractor shaped chocolates are expensive to buy - shipping seems to be the issue. So we went on ebay and found a mold for about $5 with shipping. Apparently this can be used for chocolate or soaps but not candy. We got melting chocolates from the bulk food section at out local grocery store. We got lots of comments on these cute tractors. But we made WAY too many.
We had 40 people attend the party which meant we needed some table rentals. We needed just 5 round tables and table cloths so of course we needed centerpieces.
Initially we planned on candy centerpieces - see the mason jar next to the cupcakes - but jelly bellies from the bulk food store still cost about $10 per jar to fill with candy. So we opted for flowers from the farmers market in simple mason jars. We used checkered yellow and checkered green as well as burlap fabric to add more decoration to the centerpieces. At $5 per bouquet, this was much cheaper than candy.
We didn't get any pictures of the food. We served water and adult beverages chilled in a galvanized tub.
We served lemonade and iced tea from the cutest green and yellow canisters, We got lots of questions about where we found them but they were borrowed from a friend who has had them for years. We served BBQ hamburgers (from Douglass Ranch beef of course) and hot dogs for the kiddos with fresh strawberries, homemade potato salad and a fantastic BLT salad. The food turned out well and most was able to be prepped ahead of time and then assembled right before the party.
While we made the cupcakes, we splurged on a smash cake from a local bakery. This was such a worthwhile splurge. For $10 we got a delicious and perfectly simply decorated cake. I think the mold for the small cake would have been close to $10. And we did not have much extra time.
The little guy was slow to dive into the cake but really enjoy eating almost all of it.
How cute are these handmade tractor thank you notes from Puppies and Paper Crafts! My photography does not do them justice. So darn cute!
Something we failed to get photos of was the clothes line of photos we hug. We used brown paper twine strung between the patio columns and used clothes pins to attach snapshots from his first year. It turned out very well and was pretty easy to do. In hindsight we would also have brought out some of the professional photos we have had taken all year and used them in the decorations somewhere. Since people didn't go in the house much, most people didn't get to see his adorable professional photos hanging inside.
We also didn't get photos of the treat bags for guests. The treat bags included toy tractors, bubbles, green and yellow gummy bears, chocolate tractors and my favorite - tractor shaped soaps. The soaps were super cute and ordered from a shop I found on etsy. Green colored soaps were chamomile scented and the yellow soaps were lemon scented.
Overall we were very happy with how everything turned out. Heman was in great spirits the whole time and got to enjoy seeing family and friends. We know he won't remember it, but we sure will.