Hi again, It’s me Adrienne, here for another guest blog post!
Today I want to talk about planning a Birthday party…for yourself!
I used pinterest quite a bit to get ideas, I even made a Birthday board to keep things organized. So first thing when planning a party, when do you want it? Morning, afternoon, night? Then pick a date & a theme. Next step invitations. I just made a Facebook event which I know isn’t all that creative but it was the best & most efficient way to get all my friends together in one place. I picked a sunday afternoon to evening, 4pm-10pm. It was a Birthday BBQ where I requested all guests attending to bring a dish of their choice, so a potluck. I supplied burgers, hot dogs, chips, ice cream cake, spinach dip (made by my lovely boyfriend Dustin) & beverages. Make sure that you find out in advance what your guests are bringing so you can prepare accordingly. You don’t want 6 people all bringing cheese bread. Or no one bringing a veggie tray. Or whatever it is that you have on your menu.
I hosted the party in my parents backyard. My best friend, Jenna let me borrow her small tent to provide cover over a banquet table that I set out. I decorated my table with a plastic tiffany blue table cloth from Party City, then cut a strip of burlap to make a table runner (burlap also supplied by Jenna) & a sparkly ribbon down the centre of that. I then sprinkled these pretty fake gems on the burlap to make it look a little glam. My boyfriend’s friend was kind enough to bring me flowers as a gift so I popped those on the centre of the table & it looked great. I did make a birthday banner for myself. I found the “Happy Birthday” off a free printables site but then cut out triangles for each letter. I glued each letter onto the triangles with a hot glue gun so it would stick really well & dry quickly. Then because I like a little sparkle on things I used mod podge on the top of 1/2 of them (I did every second triangle) & dusted loose glitter on top. I always recommend covering your working space in newspaper so you can tidy up easily & don’t get glitter on absolutely everything. On the other half of the triangles I used pretty trim stickers. I’ll make sure to include a photo so you can understand better. I then used a single hole punch on the tops of the triangles & strung a white thin ribbon through, I used scrapbooking paper for my triangles so they were nice & stiff & not flimsy (just a tip). My Dad & I hung the banner from the front of the tent. It was perfect I was so proud of it! It didn’t take too long to make either. So if you can’t find one you like at the store you can always make one like I did.
Something I thought would be fun was to make a wish jar. A wish jar is a jar decorated or not that you ask people to leave wishes in for you. I opted to decorate mine so pulling out the mod podge & glitter, I went to work. I used a small sponge brush to apply the glue & just sprinkled the glitter onto the jar. There was lots of excess glitter that fell onto my newspaper work space so I folded the paper in half & sort of funnelled as much as I could back into the glitter container. I used expensive glitter from Michael’s but you can always get cheaper stuff from the dollar store. It’s all about how much you want to spend & how much effort you want to put in. You can still have a gorgeous party using less expensive things, however in this case I wanted the expensive stuff. I used a hot glue gun to attach the “Birthday Wishes” lettering, which were also from Michael’s, as well as the jar itself because I wanted a big jar. I did look at the dollar store first, they didn’t have any in the size I wanted BUT they did have small mason jars 3 for $2. I bought 15 jars total to be used as drinking glasses. I was estimating 18-20 people to attend my party. From Michael’s, I also bought pink & white striped paper straws & chalkboard stickers to put on the jars! They were a huge success & to be honest I copied this idea from my friend Keltyn (she’s super clever & artistic). In the wish jar I put a pretty piece of tissue paper & glued a bow on the top. It was beautiful!
Now, why is a wish jar important to me? It’s important because when you’re having a glum day or not feeling like yourself you can pop open your wish jar & read all the kind, sweet (or funny) things that your friends have left for you. They are like tiny presents. I am so happy I made one for my party.
A tasty recipe for punch I found on pinterest I have to share with you because it’s so easy & delicious: 1 can of frozen lemonade, a big bottle of sprite, orange juice & cranberry cocktail. That’s it! So easy! I used the entire can of lemonade, the entire bottle of sprite, 1/2 the carton of orange juice & 1/2 the container of cranberry cocktail. Just taste test along the way. I also meant to put slices of orange & lemon for colour but I forgot but that would be pretty too. Oh & don’t forget to throw in the ice, keep it cold. I told all my guests that they could bring alcohol but to please be responsible, no drinking & driving. Everyone was respectful & responsible. Thank you friends!
I kept all the food (minus the burgers & hot dogs) & drinks inside the house to keep the bugs away & keep things organized. I made sure to hang a garbage bag outside for easy cleanup. A party always needs music so we popped some on. Also balloons! I bought a tank of helium at party city as well as white & Tiffany blue balloons. I had two of my boyfriend’s friends fill them up & gently let them float to the ceiling in the kitchen they looked really festive. This was Dustin’s idea.
Since I was going to be having all different people at my party from lots of different places, it was important to me to play an ice breaker game. I should mention I usually can’t stand playing most games, but this one was played right off the bat & it was speedy. I used a site called picmonkey.com to design a bingo game. I basically found a blank bingo sheet online & used that. Each box you had to write someone’s name. Whoever finished it the quickest won a prize, the prize was a $10 Starbucks gift card. This was fun it got everyone buzzing & excited. I’m so glad I went ahead with making it. Everyone was a good sport about it to. It can be hard sometimes to mingle with people you don’t know.
After the ice breaker game, Dustin & I decided it was time for people to eat. He fired up the grill for me & took care of the bbqing. Everyone had lots to eat I always make sure there is too much food because you never want to run out. For beverages other then my punch, I had icy lemon water outside, ginger ale & coke in a cooler inside & sparkling apple juice, a choice for everyone! Once everyone was stuffed I got to open presents! I can’t believe how spoiled I am! I didn’t request gifts but I got so many & wonderful, beautiful things! Thank you to all my friends, boyfriend & family for all the amazing things you all are so kind
Now for my favourite part of my party! The piñata! I bought one of those colorful donkey piñatas & filled it full to the brim with sweets from the bulk barn, plus three $5 gift cards to Starbucks because I thought that might be a fun little surprise. However there was a twist, because grown adults could easily smash down a piñata with a stick, I had Dustin & his friend go around my house & find things to hit it with. I got stuck with a plunger! So just imagine me violently swinging a plunger in a party dress while blind folded, too hilarious! I must put a disclaimer though..there was a retractable snow brush in the mix & my poor friend Sarah thought she was good to go but 1/2 of it went flying off into the guests!! Oh dear! Luckily no one was hurt & nothing broke. So we all had a huge laugh about that. Jenna had a whisk, Leah had a cookie sheet. Dustin wrote all the items on paper & we put them in a bowl to pick. I went first & after that we just picked who would be next, it was a laugh riot!
Once the piñata was smashed & the candy exploded everywhere it was time for cake! Dustin brought out the cake & everyone sang Happy Birthday. I felt so special & lucky at that moment! Everyone had come to my house to celebrate my birthday with me & that truly was the most special gift of all.
Now, I had bought a bunch of things to make s’mores with on our outdoor fireplace but everyone was too full. So since I have so many s’more supplies I might try & create a s’mores Rice Krispie treat because why not! Dustin brought a game called cards against humanity. It’s rude & crude but hilarious. I don’t recommend it if you’re easily offended; it’s politically incorrect. Maybe go for the family friendly version apples to apples which is also fun.
Guests trickled out between 9 & 10 & everyone was gone by 11:15 pm. It was a huge success! All my planning & pinteresting had paid off! I wrote up thank you cards to all my guests & sent them off in the mail. My party wouldn’t have been complete without all my friends.
So quick recap here for party planning 101 with Adrienne
1. Pick a date & time
5. Decoration & set up
6.Party games or activities
It’s not hard to throw a party you just have to be organized. Thank you again to everyone who did attend my Birthday, it meant the world to me that you were there. I hope this helps you for organizing your next party. Make sure to look on Pinterest for great party ideas & more!