We opened our doors to our nearest and dearest this weekend to celebrate Miss Maddie's birthday, and it was SUCH a fun time. We are so appreciative of everyone who took time out of the weekend to come to the party and we are thankful to have such wonderful friends and family!
Steve and I had been brainstorming about this party for quite some time. We tossed around a bunch of ideas but Steve really nailed it on the head when he said "We need this party to be special for Maddie. What does Maddie love?" And I knew right away that the answer was music!
We were delighted when the girls' music teacher, Miss Kristen, agreed to come do a sing-a-long at the party with all of Maddie's favorite songs and instruments. Kristen is a Center Director for the Music Together program, which Maddie has done essentially since birth, and it has been fascinating to watch Maddie explore music, rhythm, and movement, even at such a young age. Music has always been one of my favorite ways to connect with Maddie, and is often the only thing that can calm her down when she is restless and fussy. And Anna loves singing and dancing with her sister too! So our plan was set, and I filled in the rest of the details with every musical touch I could find!
Don't worry, this picture was taken after the party. No floor straws were on the tables!
I know I am including too many straw pictures, but I can't help it. They are too cute.
I also knew that a crucial component of this party in particular was to be realistic about what I could accomplish. Taking care of two little children is demanding and time-consuming, so I knew I would have very little free time to work on projects. We kept the guest list to a manageable number of friends, and all of whom Maddie sees on a very regular basis. Decorations were simple and either store-bought or ordered from Etsy, and the menu was kept to one table full of favorites. I worked on getting what I could set up throughout the week, so all we had to do at the end was clean and put everything up. It's always a little stressful at the end but oh so worth it, to see my happy girl's face and all of our friends enjoying themselves!
Anna was in absolute heaven throughout the entire week as the party preparations kicked into high gear. She is a little obsessed with birthdays right now - singing the birthday song, reading birthday books, eating birthday cake! Anna loved checking out all of the decorations, sampling the party foods, and practicing the birthday song. She was absolutely giddy the day of the party, and bounced right up from her nap ready to play!!
Maddie had a wonderful time at the party too. I can't even tell you how much I loved seeing her crawl all around the room "saying hi" to everyone. She was thrilled to see all of the drums and keyboard and Music Together instruments, and especially her beloved Miss Kristen.
All twelve kids bounced between the music and the fish tank - our aquarium was quite the hit!
Gotta crack those knuckles to get them warmed up!
5 in the bed and the little one said "Rolllllll over!"
Kisses from Sophia
Peekaboo with Jake
"Hannah-friend" and her family
Oleks knows how hard it is to get a family picture with everyone looking at the camera, haha. See my family picture at the bottom of the post!
Daniel and Allyson
Our party guests enjoyed wine and beer (all specially picked by Bartender Stevo), and nibbled on artichoke dip, tomato and basil bruschetta, fruit salad, cheese and crackers, and pigs-in-a-blanket. We also had pink lemonade and water, and even special little cups for all the kids. A slideshow of all of our favorite Maddie pictures from the past year played on our TV throughout the party and a fun playlist of music put a beat in the air.
Just imagine a big dish of artichoke dip there in the middle, haha. It was in the oven when I took the picture.
After the sing-a-long wrapped up, it was time for cake! Maddie dug right in to her smash cake - a surprise after the tepid reaction to her cupcake last week. She even shared with her sister!
I am so happy SuSu got this video - I think it is too cute! Anna was having some kind of meltdown right next to Maddie's chair and Maddie was hilariously unconcerned about it - she had fistfuls of cake to attend to!!
We sent everyone home full and happy, and each kiddo grabbed a special goody bag on the way out of the door.
Once everyone had gone, Steve and I collapsed on the couch until it was time to open presents. Our friends were so generous and thoughtful, and we were thrilled to add some new toys to the playroom. The girls haven't stopped playing with all of the fun new things since we got them all opened!
Anna fixed herself a plate after the party. I had to laugh when she stuck a straw right into her cake!
We were so happy to see all the work and planning pay off for a successful party - we loved being able to host so many of our friends and we were so thankful to get the chance to celebrate our little girl. Happy Birthday, sweet baby girl!!