It's hard to believe, but our little girl is six! Time really flies- especially when you start celebrating birthdays when you are three years old. Grace's fourth and fifth birthday parties were a lot of fun and excitement for her. When she came home from Ethiopia, she had no idea what her birthday was or why celebrating it was so significant. My have times changed! This time around, she was ready and excited to count down to her birthday!
It's always a little bitter sweet to celebrate a birthday with an adopted child (at least for me anyway...). Celebrating the day Grace was born brings to mind all of the changes she has experienced in her short life. I can't help but to praise God for Grace's birth mother and the amazing choices she made for Grace. We are so thankful that God placed such a strong, capable, and courageous women with Grace when she entered this world. We also praise Him for guiding this amazing woman as she thoughtfully and selflessly chose to place Grace in an orphanage with the belief and hope that Grace would have a better chance of success and health if she had a different opportunity.
So, as we celebrate Grace's birthday, we are also celebrating the amazing woman who made it possible.
For those of you who have been encouraging me to blog about the party (all two of you...ok, three if you count Grace's grandma), here goes...
The theme was RAINBOWS!
It is super easy to throw a rainbow birthday party with resources like Pinterest and Hobby Lobby out there. Rainbows don't have to cost a lot of money, and they can be created out of just about anything.
I was really behind schedule and didn't give out invites until one week before the party...to make sure everyone remembered the party, I wanted to make sure the invite was cute. I love how these turned out! I found a template for the cloud, and used clear bags filled with rainbow colored licorice. The back of the bag had a piece of cardstock with all of the party info on it.
We started with the rainbow wall of balloons. Thanks to the idea from my adoptive mom Chrisanna, we had a beautiful backdrop for photos and an easy way to add color to the room. The balloon wall was PERFECT for one of the craft projects too. Just a little hint if you plan to do the balloon wall...use an air compressor (great idea Keith!). I think my husband said he was able to blow up three or four balloons a minute (tying them took a bit longer).
The paper pom poms were premade at a party supply store. Lucky for me, I have a wonderful teenage daughter who is crafty and helpful. Thanks to Alyssa, the decorating was a snap!
I bought six different colors of tulle to use throughout the room. I tied tulle on the back of each chair (the six colors of the rainbow) and used a little to jazz up my cupcake plate.
Of course, we greeted the guests with our balloon wreath (made this little number last year). I added a quick picture of Grace to it so that guests knew they were at the right house :)
Alyssa's very talented boyfriend was kind enough to draw a unicorn with a rainbow horn for Grace. The intent was to use the poster for a "pin the horn on the unicorn" game...we had so much fun that we ran out of time. The poster was still a great decoration.
There is no limit to the amount of things you can do with a rainbow color theme.
I came across rainbow ribbon at Hobby Lobby and decided to give each guest a rainbow headband. We played a little game and each girl got to win one (tried this approach so that they filled their goody bags up as we went...prizes went right into the bag and were all set to go home at the end of the party. The goody bags also had individually wrapped rainbow licorice and bags of rainbow goldfish crackers...I know, so much artificial food dye at this party!).
The rainbow wands were also a prize for playing a little game. We had a version of musical chairs, but instead of chairs, there were colored pieces of paper (each color of the rainbow) on the ground in a circle. There were also two white "cloud" paper pieces. When the music stopped, if you were standing on a cloud, you won a cloud/rainbow wand. The girls really seemed to like the game and the wands.
As far as crafts went, we made rainbow bottlecap necklaces with the girls names on. I love making personalized crafts (with names) because so many girls have unique spellings for their names. It is fun for them to take something home with their name on it. I made the bottlecap part ahead of time, and the girls strung rainbow colored beads on a ribbon necklace...easy peasy.
Our rainbow balloon backdrop was perfect for taking photos of the girls when they arrived. The girls painted rainbow frames. The frames were unfinished wood frames that cost a mere dollar from Michael's. With a little white spray paint, they looked perfect for the girls to decorate! It was fun to print the photos right away so that the frames were complete when the parents arrived. Many were impressed with the quick turn around time :).
There are so many cool snacks to have at a rainbow party!
One of my FAVORITE things at the party was the rainbow jello!
It was super easy, I just had to allow enough time for each layer to set before I added another.
This was a huge hit with the girls (and my family).
I made my favorite rainbow cupcakes as well. They still amaze people when they take that first bite...it's so fun to watch kids ooh and ahh when they discover the rainbow inside their cupcake. (These are always requested by my kids for their school birthday treat...Alyssa even wanted to bring them for her dance team the other day...).
All in all, the party was a huge success. We've been enjoying the rainbow balloons and decorations for over a week now...they seem perfect for spring, and I don't have the heart to take them down!
A very happy birthday girl (and her very tired mom) :)