The bright side of having a mom who can't summon the energy all winter to pull off your birthday party? Celebrating in May!
Because late is always better than never. (I say that a lot.)
So we planned a Garden Party. To celebrate Ali and Sami's 8th birthday.
And we did it in my parents' backyard.
We tried for early May, but the rain, rain, wouldn't go away. So we rescheduled for a sunny afternoon the following week.
Because we had girls from a couple different schools, we began with an easy get to know you game. Simple but so fun. Place girls around the perimeter of sheet, pull it taut, then drop one or two ping pong balls on the sheet. The trick is to play defense on your edge of the sheet by blowing the ball away and hoping to score on (or blow the ball off) an opposing edge. No touching the ball with your hands.
Then we had the girls rotate to a few different stations. Michelle and Mary came to help the girls make flower crowns.
They are flower crown experts. For a tutorial on crowns, visit Mary's cute blog.
Tip: Trader Joe's has the best fresh flowers for the best price.
Mary was a darling to cut and tape and twist, making the perfect crown for each girl.
I'm so glad she took time to make her own. With a gorgeous peony from my mom's garden.
The girls painted pots.
I love this photo of Hailey in her crown, western light on her cheek, paintbrush in hand.
Artists at work.
Nora and Izzy.
My dear friend Darci helped with this station. Couldn't have done it without her. And Darci, I feel so badly I didn't get a better picture of you (and Michelle and Mary)! Thank you again for your help!
Doug manned the planting station.
And the birthday cake.
I love making cakes. This one though, might be my favorite yet. Garden gnomes having their own little birthday party.
Double birthday wishes.
My friend Lisa made the cake toppers. Blue and white paper clips, dipped in paint, for eight candles. And real sugar on the tiny cake. Incredibly cute. She is ultra talented and was a dear to take on this project. You can find her on Instagram @leafdesigns.
My Dad helped serve cake and ice cream. Loved having him out there with us. He has worked so hard to keep up the yard and plant the garden this year. He's done it all without my mom's help.
Bless him. And bless her. She misses being outside digging and planting. We're hopeful she can return at some point to these activities that bring her joy.
Loved how Hazel's crown dripped heavy on one side.
Addie and Hazel.
Emma's garden hat was perfect for the day.
And Liza who showed up just in time for cake.
I love watching these girls grow up, adding new friends to the mix, cherishing old ones.
Flower cookie for the road.
And one last group photo. Making faces. Because they couldn't hold still.
Thank you sweet girls for being Ali and Sami's friends. Thank you Michelle, Mary, Darci, Doug, and my Dad, for your help. And thank you Mother Nature for being the very best venue for any celebration.
We're one week into summer, loving slower mornings, new job charts, and afternoons to play. Finding a new groove slowly. And hoping you are happy. Wherever you are.