I love decorating for my kids’ birthday parties and I go all-out, especially for their first birthdays. I suspect that this is something that will change as my kiddos get older because they will call the shots for their special days and probably end my party decorating craze era.
For the time being, I have a complete blast planning their themed celebrations. Toddler B is turning two next month, which has caused heavy reflection about the past year. Part of this, of course, includes looking back on the adorable birthday party we hosted in our home and in her honor when she turned one.
During my entire pregnancy we called Toddler B “Baby B” because we knew that no matter the gender of our second born, the baby’s name would start with a B. (Her name completed our A, B, C, D pattern with Kiddo A, Toddler B, Chelse, and Daddy D.) Because of this, I fell madly in love with the idea of a bumble bee themed birthday party: a “Bee” Day Celebration for my Baby B. It was too cute to pass up.
There were so many Pinterest ideas about this theme that I had a heyday pinning to my heart’s content. I was able to pick the right combination of DIY and store bought items that were perfect for our gathering. (Click here for TONS of cute ideas pinned to my Pinterest board.) Here is where we landed with our real life version of a Bee Day Party for our one-year-old:
I put out a wide spread of finger foods for the party. Most were sweet treats because of the theme but there were some healthy and savory choices as well.
Wings were a cute and easy way to incorporate a savory snack. I broiled store bough wings in the oven right before guests arrived and served them with BBQ sauce and Ranch.
The hives turned out to be more adorable than I expected. I cut donut holes in half and placed them on top of glazed donuts which were also cut it half and stacked. I stuck bee stickers to toothpicks and ran them through the stacks. Super easy and ridiculously adorable.
Jelly Bee-ns are self explanatory. I opted for lemon flavored Jelly Belly candies for our Bee Day Party bowl.
I made bumble cups the night before with vanilla and chocolate pudding colored with food dye. I poured each layer into cute plastic cups and chilled them each time in between the layers. They kept nicely in the refrigerator over night.
Thank goodness for Honeycombs cereal! I filled polka dot dishes with this easy-for-little-fingers treat. Some grownups ended up grabbing milk out of the fridge and having a nice bowl of sugary cereal, as well.
I made the stingers using traditional wood skewer sticks and created fruit and veggie kabobs. I used pineapple and blueberries for the former and cheese and olives for the latter. The kiddos also loved these treats, although I recommend cutting the pointy ends off the skewers. I didn’t think of this before hand and wish I would have.
In the spirit of keeping it simple, I served only one themed drink which was punch that looked like nectar. I mixed lemonade with sun tea and lemon slices. (I also placed other drinks in a cooler.)
I created food signs with free clip art and printed them off on light yellow paper. One thing I loved about this yellow and black theme is that I could add touches of pink here and there, which I did.
I made flowers and a bee out of construction paper and rubber cement. This was a nice way to make large hanging decorations and they added a great touch to our fireplace.
At each first birthday party in our house, I’ve had guests sign the kids’ baby books instead of a guest book. It always adds a cool touch and provides a little memento from their parties. Also, I put their birth announcement out with their birthday cake. This is mostly symbolic for me, but it looks awfully sweet when everything is pulled together. (I also place photo books from their first year of life around the party.) Instead of confetti, I put out little flower cut outs and I used bee patterned fabric instead of a table cloth for the sign in and cake table.
I needed a little extra something to place around the party. I found mini pinwheels, placed bumble bee stickers on them, and placed them in tightly packed black tissue paper which was already stuffed into yellow votive holders.
I purchased a “Happy Bee Day” banner that matched the plates and napkins as well as a few puff garlands. I strung these across a large mirror I have hanging above the table I placed the food on.
I pulled a jar of honey from the pantry for a balloon weight and snuck in some more pink with curled ribbon.
I hung yellow lanterns after I fastened bumble bees on flexible wire through them. Then, I hung puffy decorations in between for a pink flower look. This hive combination lined the banister leading to the party from our front door.
I made little bee hives out of construction paper, chalk, string, and bee stickers to mark the doors inside for guests to find the restroom, etc.
I used the exact same pattern to make Toddler B’s high chair sign as I did for Kiddo A’s 1st birthday high chair sign. I just used different colors of alternated construction paper, clip art print outs, and flower cut outs. I used the phrase, “Fun To Be One” replacing the word “be” with a bee image.
Our little B was dressed to match the theme of her party. There were so many adorable outfits on Etsy that I ordered TWO. Yes, I was that mom and my baby girl changed after she devoured her cake while wearing a to-die-for lace romper and matching headband. We put her in a more comfortable pillowcase dress to open presents and play with her guests. The lace clothes were not as practical, but she wore the cute dress many times after her first birthday.
TREAT BAGS & THANK YOUS
Since having my second baby, I’ve realized that there are just some things I’m not going to get accomplished as a full time working mommy and blogger. Thank you notes happen to be one of those. I will return, someday, to handwritten sentiments of gratitude and my children will be asked to help when they are old enough. In the mean time, the go-to for my kids’ parties are treat bags with the thank you note included.
I kept the treat bags and thank you notes small for this party. I purchased mini yellow bags, bee and flower stickers, already-made thank you tags, plastic bee finger puppets, a box of individually packaged raw honey, and special order suckers with stickers that read, “Thanks for being so sweet! Enjoy this special Bee Day treat!” I fastened the stickers and tags to the bags and placed the honey and bee inside. Then, I used the suckers, bags and a tablecloth to decorate a side table at the party.
Thank you for revisiting Toddler B’s first birthday party with me! Please, share any other Bee Day Party ideas in the comments. If you have a link, be sure to include it.
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