We are back! After a wonderful summer doing some traveling and enjoying the outdoors it is time to get back in the swing of things. The twins started preschool last week, very exciting! To celebrate I thought it would be fun to look back on their first birthday party and share all the ideas I put together to create a bumblebee themed party.
Nothing in particular led me to the bumblebee idea besides that their birthday is in the summer, I also liked the color scheme and thought it would be cute. After I had the theme I got on Google and Pinterest for some fun ideas. I love to use Pinterest for planning parties because there are so many great ideas.
The guest list consisted of grandparents, aunts/uncles/cousins, close friends, and neighbors. For this party we mailed out invitations. However, I have found it has become increasingly popular to email out invitations or create an event on Facebook. Even though it’s less formal, I definitely support using these methods because it saves time and money. All your guests will end up in the same place whether you mail or email your invitations.
I have found the best options and best prices for decorations, especially for a themed party, are online. For this reason, it’s good to have a theme planned at least a month (but the more time, the better) before the party. This gives you a week or two to research and order decorations online.
Balloons – yellow and black balloons seemed like a great way to add to the color scheme. The balloons were tied to patio chairs.
Tableware – the plates, cups, napkins, utensils, and tablecloths were ordered online. A combination of solid colors and bee themed items were chosen. For example, dessert plates with a bee that said 1st birthday on them were ordered. A recommendation, besides tablecloths, I now stick with only solid colors for tableware. Inevitably, you will end up with extra tableware. It is much easier to use for something else in the future if they are just solid colors. If you want something to be themed, go with the tablecloths because they will be thrown away at the end of the day.
Along with the tableware I also found some cute, inexpensive bee decorations online including centerpieces and fun items to hang from the porch ceiling.
It’s also a good idea to see what you have around the house. I happened to have a stuffed yellow jacket (from my Alma Mater the University of Rochester), so I put that out as a decoration.
Food and Drink
Pinterest is full of wonderful ideas. When using Pinterest, the key for me is distinguishing what seems like it will actually work, while also being simple to throw together. Like all parents, I do not have a lot of extra time. On top of this, I am not artsy and I do not have the patience for some of the ideas you will find. Basically, the simpler the better.
Some of the food was not bee themed, this included sandwich trays from Costco and chips.
Side dishes – pineapple and blueberry skewers and an olive and cheese tray with a few olive / cheese shaped bees:
Lemonade – to go with the color scheme
Snacks – yellow, black, and white M&Ms were placed in bowls on various tables
Cupcakes – vanilla cake with yellow frosting and chocolate cake with yellow frosting. The cupcakes were arranged in the shape of a beehive and I bought little sugar bees as a decoration. A bonus with cupcakes is I did not have to make 2 separate smash cakes. Each twin got a cupcake to eat and make a mess with:
The girls wore cute dresses for their party, that someone had given them. I did not see a need to go out and spend more money for bee themed dresses.
The biggest hiccup of the day was the weather. The twins’ birthday is in July, so we planned to have the party on our sun porch and patio. It turned out to be a very hot day so the patio was not very usable in the hot sun and guests stayed on the porch and in the air conditioned family room. Since it was a 1st birthday party, there were no set activities, but the older kids played basketball, decorated our driveway with sidewalk chalk, climbed through tunnels and tents, and rode in cozy coupes.
Another weather related issue were the balloons. I didn’t realize the extreme heat would cause the balloons to deflate or pop. That was a good learning experience, in the summer balloons need to stay inside.
For favors, honeycomb cereal was put in bee themed favor bags.
That is how we pulled off the twins bumblebee themed 1st birthday party. It took a lot of planning and prep work, but in the end our guests enjoyed themselves.