For the first time in forever
Remi turned 3!
COVID played a huge role in our decision to not have a large first or second birthday party. We had a small drive by celebration Isn't she lovely, isn't she ONEDERFUL for her first birthday with a limited number of guests. We even chose to have some family members come the following day to celebrate and limit interaction with others - wow what a time that was! Remi's second birthday was even smaller. We had an intimate family celebration at the house with cake and all of Remi's favorite things. Read all about it in our TWO WILD blog post. Three was special to me and I wanted to do it big!
Choosing a party theme for this year was so easy. Remi spends most of her days dressed as Elsa from Disney's Frozen so this was a no brainer. We added in the line from the song "For the first time in forever, Remi turns 3" and it fit! Themes help to bring your party together whether its décor, food choices or experiences. For the invite and graphics I decided to use an Evite. I am traditional when it comes to mailing out invitations, thank you notes and holiday cards. Amanda suggested an online invitation for easy tracking of the guestlist and her pure hatred for mailed invitations. I loved it and would totally recommend using an evite or other online platform in the future. This made it easy to track guest counts for finalizing numbers and send out reminder notices to guests.
Rather than host her party at our house, we decided to rent out the Elmwood Park Community and Recreation Center. The new community and recreation building has 4 bocce courts and 3 golf simulators with a driving range and over 7300 courses to choose from to play a round! The space has a separate party room with refrigerator and kitchenette space, perfect for catering setups and dessert tables. The room held about 48 seated comfortably at a time and the full space can accommodate hundreds. Inside the main bocce court there is a bar that can be booked for open bar or cash bar packages. We chose the open bar options and made beer and wine available to our guests. The space was ideal because it was more than enough room for the activities, kids to run around and adults to be entertained.
We received tons of compliments for our food and desserts! Chickies Beef in Hillside catered our event. We ordered the ultimate party packs which included beef sandwiches, rigatoni vodka, Italian sausage, salad and we added pizzas as an appetizer on the side. Brittany was amazing to work with, great customer service and recommendations! Brian was our server and helped to facilitate the event. He made sure the trays were always filled, everything was cleaned and even packed up extra food in to go containers for me. Danielle from Pretty Yummy made the most beautiful and delicious Frozen themed cookies for the party and Toni from Shweetcakes mastered our chocolate covered pretzel sticks and rice crispy treats. We ordered cookies and cake from the Italian Bakery and cupcakes from Marianos!
The vendors made the day so special. I needed something to keep the kids preoccupied and entertained. LoobyLoo Party and Soft Play provided the bounce house and ball pit. They were great to work with and customized everything for the event, even added her name to the ballpit for an extra personalized touch. I can't even begin to tell you how much the kids LOVED the slide into the ballpit. This was perfect for ages three through six. The company came to setup and and take down once the event was over. Rika was our face painter and she did an amazing job! My friend had her at her daughter's birthday a few months before and she was very kind and patient with Remi so I booked her right away! We had the BEST balloon twister Nick! Not only was he amazing at balloon art but walked around the party creating pieces for kids and adults.
Obligatory character visit from Elsa and Olaf was a must when having a Frozen themed birthday party. I booked the characters through Princess Party Chicago Inc. The company has ton of options available for party and event visits. The actors stayed in character from the time they walked through the door and were very friendly taking photos and singing songs with the kids. Elsa sang "Let it Go" and had a great voice! Remi was excited to "make it snow" when Elsa sang the song. I would absolutely recommend them to anyone looking for a princess visit! Remi still talks about Elsa and Olaf visiting her party. She thinks Anna had to stay back at the castle and watch over Arendelle which we think is the cutest.
I absolutely LOVED my balloons! I have made my balloon arches and pieces for previous parties. I did not want to stress over the décor and so chose to use an outside vendor. I couldn't be happier with how the pieces turned out. Tatiana from Pretty Little Party Planner is the BEST! She was so easy to communicate and work with. Tatiana made the most beautiful balloon backdrop with an elevated neon happy birthday sign. She even added Frozen character balloon heirlooms, a number three and an additional balloon garland piece for the bounce house to tie all the décor together.
I ordered most of the simple decorations from Amazon like hanging snowflakes and a Frozen Elsa Happy Birthday banner. For the centerpieces I added hydrangea flowers to blue mason jars. My bestie Julie created a ton of Frozen cutouts with her cricut machine to sit on top of the flowers. These made the perfect addition to my pastel table cloths.
Pack of Instant Snow
Oreo Dip Snack Packs
Blue Pop Rocks
Blue Sour Punch
Blue Kinetic Sand
Blue Ring Pops
Disney Frozen Character Straws
Disney Frozen Olaf Grab and Go Color Pack Pack
April 4th was Remi's actual birthday which fell on a Tuesday. I took off work and we spent the day getting lost in balloons and cupcakes. Planning a party can be overwhelming and stressful. As happy as I am that the party is over, I absolutely loved planning it and would do it all over again. Three was a great age to throw her first big bash! Remi had the best time and spent 99% of her time going down the slide and playing in the ball pit. I only wish I had more time to talk to all the guests. Three hours flew by in the blink of an eye!
The third year of motherhood has taught me to go with the flow. I can plan and be as prepared as possible but there will always be a hiccup. Some days she just wants to wear her pjs and a princess dress. At one point I would be trying to bargain with her to put on normal clothes and I have decided to let it go and remind her not to forget her crown. They are only this age with this imagination for a short period of time and I am going to embrace every princess dress and magical singalong that I can. We spend most days dancing around to our favorite Disney songs and I wouldn't want it any other way.
X0 - Katie