***See the winner of the Ruby Ruffle pattern giveaway here!***
Phew! We all survived Charlotte's second birthday party! I say survived because we had a high of 104 degrees that day...it was sweltering to say the least! Nevertheless I am one determined gal when I put my mind to something, so I persevered-thanks to a lot of help from my sister, Rory's parents, Rory's sister and her hubby, and Rory of course! Thank you sooo much for all your help! Also thanks to my dad for some of these photos-he's an awesome photographer!
Here's the invite my friend Tara from Paper Patch Ink made! Isn't it adorable!?
Charlotte had a blast-this picture says it all. Although I'm not sure she knew the party was for her...she kind of wandered around eating cornbread and people watching most of the time. (info on her dress can be found in this post)
So when the guests came into the backyard, they were greeted by some funny cowpoke advice-my favorite is the spurs one. youch.
Then the little ones were invited to gear up in some straw cowboy/girl hats and bandanas.
I ran out of helium after blowing up a larger-than-Charlotte-sized horse balloon, so we ended up stringing these cute cow print balloons on some string between a few trees! Thanks Susan, Shawn, Janae, and Emma for helping blow them all up!
I made these centerpieces for the tables out of salt containers wrapped in fabric with flowers inserted into holes poked into the top. Ingenious, right? My mother in law invented these bad boys and they were awesome at holding down the tablecloths and looking cute. Two aspects you always want in a centerpiece, right? I cut the galloping horses out on my Silhouette.
Hey! There's that larger-than-Charlotte-sized horse balloon! She loved that thing, many of the kids played with it until it escaped into the sunset aka the blue yonder aka floated away. There was a heroic effort to retrieve it (thanks Tracy!) but alas it wanted it's freedom too much.
I designed the Happy Birthday banner (hung in front of the food table) in PicMonkey, printed it off on card stock, and strung it up on some ribbon.
I made this wooden and fleece horseshoe set for the kids/whoever, more info on that another day!
The other "game" I had was Rope yourself a Pony...which was just our little rocking horse patiently getting roped over and over again by a bunch of kids. I got the rope at the hardware store ($1 a foot) and taped it together with some red duct tape to form a ring.
I also set up a photo booth! I tried this with Sadie's first birthday party but it was indoors and didn't work out very well...this time was much better! I bought a vintage plaid sheet on Etsy and strung it up between two trees with some clothesline...then made a bunch of photo props with my Silhouette-mustaches, lips, hats, and sheriff's badges. I also made that fun WANTED sign with some cardboard and letters cut out on my Silhouette.
You might notice a trend here. I love using my Silhouette for parties!
I also painted these wooden speech bubbles with chalkboard paint and you can see my sisters had fun with them!
Now for the food! I may have gotten carried away with the theme, but at least there was plenty of chow! yum.
I found those fun take out containers at a local restaurant supply store and thought they'd fit the theme perfectly!
We had hot dogs (turkey and regular), and lots of toppings for them! I bought some of those squirty bottles and put in BBQ sauce, ketchup, mayo, mustard, relish, and a knock off of J Dawg's sauce. (haven't ever tried their hot dogs so I don't know if it was close but it was sure tasty!) Then I had chopped onions, tomatoes, and cheese to go on top.
Simple drinks: Water and lemonade...
...fancied up with some cute paper straws of course! When I found that mini milk tin thrifting I got so excited! Probably more excited than a person should be about a mini milk tin...
Oh yeah I made those chalkboard fabric labels from...chalkboard fabric. Maybe a little tutorial soon...
I cut some circles and horseshoes out of scrapbook paper on my (take a guess) Silhouette, and glued them to the tops of applesauce. They were yellow horseshoes at first, but it was a bit reminiscent of the Golden Arches of McDonalds, so I switched them to brown. Much better.
You can also see the butter-I made honey butter, and whipped butter, and piped it into some small mason jars.
The cornbread is hiding under that paper towel. Shoo flies!
I also found Bessie here at the thrift store for a measly $3, so I snagged her to hold wooden utensils wrapped in gingham napkins. The gingham table squares I reused from my sister's bridal shower. Hooray for reusing stuff!
Made some delish cowboy caviar...
Another thrifting score! Is it weird that I would have bought these regardless of planning a cowgirl party? I love baby horsies!
You can see part of the little rocking horse I also thrifted in the picture below. I tied some paisley fabric around his neck. cute!
We also had watermelon, homemade mac n' cheese, homemade baked beans, and a "tumbleweed" salad.
My mother in law is the best. She did the salad for me, and put the salad toppings/dressings in adorable mason jars with the cutest ladles!
Woohoo! Dessert time!
Of course, you know me and a theme...so I had so much fun brainstorming (aka, Pinteresting) ideas for this table!
First I'll talk about the cake. It was my first time doing a stacked tiered cake, and it was actually a breeze! I did a little research and bought some hollow plastic tubes from Michaels that supported the top layer, along with cardboard cake boards. It's a chocolate cake with swiss meringue buttercream. I made some brown and black marshmallow fondant, then cut out the cow spots and rolled out some "rope". As I told Rory-one of the easiest cakes I've done yet-mainly because I didn't try to cover the whole thing with fondant.
I decided to use at least a few things that were store bought on the dessert table-one less thing to worry about it nice...so I bought these rice krispie treats and called them haybales. done and DOne!
I made these vanilla cupcakes, frosted with swiss meringue buttercream as well, baked them in some yellow gingham cupcake liners, and made some cupcake toppers with some lollipop sticks, a scan from an old horse book I had, and my scalloped paper punch.
I looove how the sugar cookies turned out! I made some boots, hats, and scalloped horse silhouettes.
The boots are my fav! Followed by the horsies.
I bought some "cowhide" taffy. Perfect, no? Also some Cow Tales, lemon drops, and saltwater taffy went into these cute wooden berry boxes.
These little hand pies were pretty yummy! They were apple, and I don't usually like baked apple, but they were good! The crust was flaky and buttery. I think I'll have to do a post with just the recipes! lol.
I made some easy peasy and delish smore's pops with jumbo marshmallows, chocolate almond bark, and crushed graham crackers. Really easy! I tied some gingham ribbon around the top for some cuteness...cause it needed more, ya know?
I ripped a bajeellion strips of fabric for that fabric garland-and sewed some giant ric rac around the edges of a yard of fabric for the table square. The cake plates I reused from other parties.
Also I am so mad that I forgot to put these adorable farm themed gummies out! The heat fried my brain pretty bad I guess. My pal Kirstin bought them for me when we were at SNAP and I've been saving them for the party! grrr....thanks anyways Kirstin! They are delicious...and at least you guys can see them. ;)
Happy Birthday Charlotte! She blew out her candles like a pro!
For the favors (also each kiddo got a hat and bandana) I bought some gingham bags, then folded over the top, a tan cupcake liner, then clothes-pinned a card stock horse silhouette on the front. Simple but I loved it.
Did you make it to the end? Wow I'm impressed.
Here's the source list:
Hats/Bandanas/napkins/bubbles/horse lollies/horse toys/paisley red candies-Oriental Trading
Cow and horse balloons-Ebay
Wooden speech bubble-Etsy
Candy-Nuts.com and The Nutty Fruit house
Wooden utensils-The Webstaurant store
Tan cupcake liners-Etsy
Yellow cupcake liners-Etsy
Gingham favor bags-Etsy
Berry baskets/chalkboard pen-Etsy
Cowboy hat cookie cutter-Etsy
Straws-somewhere on Etsy
Fabric: online all over!
Ric Rac: Ribbon Retreat
Chalkboard Fabric: Oilcloth Addicts
Invite: Paper Patch Ink