Monday, November 05, 2007

A Princess Birthday

Well, I'm guessing you all knew what I was going to post about today considering that Friday was Emily's birthday!

I started the morning off with a pretty table and a box of cereal of her choice - Lucky Charms. We used "real" dishes instead of the normal plastic.

She has been very aware of the candles on our table lately and wants to light them at every meal - so I made these special candle jars just for her day. A bag of pink M&M's (Breast Cancer Awareness month) and some pink gingham fabric bows was all it took. Incidentally, this awareness and desire to light the candles has made me realize how much little ones do notice and appreciate even these little touches around our homes.

We spent the morning at home completing some needed chores with a wagon ride around the neighborhood thrown in. Then, she curled up on the couch to watch her current favorite - Cinderella. We visited with several family members on the phone during this time as well - thanks for calling! After the movie, it was just Emily and Mama (Rachel was home napping and Grandma came over) and we headed out for lunch of her choice - Chick-Fil-A!

When she got up from her nap - we had planned a party for a few of her little friends!

I had been collecting goodies for each little guest. The headband crowns and wands were a party project we worked on. I put pink M&M's in the princess "Easter eggs" and the coin purse and pen were just for fun!

After assembling all of the goodies, I realized I didn't have anything for them to carry their goodies in! So during a nap time this week - I made six little purses! The fabric was in my stash - never cut and I used scrap ribbons for the handles.

Each guest had a place setting including a bowl of stickers to decorate her crown and wand. The plates and napkins were from a party outlet - thanks Grandma!

The cake! I knew I wanted to make this and asked Joy for her tips - what she shared was a help and I know this isn't perfect - but I was very pleased with how she turned out! (I tried to fix the icing in the front so it would be smoother - but this was the bet I could get!)

Here is the whole table!

We started off the party by reading this book - the girls seemed to really enjoy it!

Then we made crowns and wands together!

The Birthday Girl!

After crafting, we all enjoyed cake and ice cream followed by some fun play time together! Thank you, ladies, for coming!

Next on our schedule was having dinner with family and friends. I made homemade pizza and bread sticks and we followed this up with gift opening! Emily had changed into a ballerina outfit at the end of her party - so she had that on for the next section of the day! Until she opened the following dress, jewels and "glass" slippers!

Lest you think I ran out and purchased the dress full price (Ha!) I will let you know I found it on Target clearance at least two years ago for less than $5 and have been saving it! My Mom found the slippers at her Target on clearance as well!

This is unrehearsed, ladies - this girl was so excited about these shoes and she knew to point out her toe just like a princess would!

Rachel had a great time playing with all the bags and paper!

We were all tuckered out at the end of the night, but I think it would be fair to say that Emily had a special day and felt celebrated!

Only other frugal momma's would appreciate this next part - but I know that looking at pictures can make it seem like I spent a lot on this birthday. I just want to show you how little you can spend (probably even less than I did!) and still have a great and memorable party!

**Invitations: free (duplicate gift exchange at Hallmark)
**Goodie Bags:
- headbands - 0.50 each on Michael's clearance
- wands - $2.50 for 8 on clearance at Target (included foam stickers and alphabet stickers to decorate - thank you Mom!)
- coin purses - 0.25 each on Target clearance
- pens - found at Target on the dollar rack - I can't remember if I paid full price, but if I did - they were 3/$1
- princess "Easter eggs" - clearance after Easter - less than $1 for 3 (can't remember the exact price!)
- M&M's - about $2.50 for one bag.
- bags - fabric on hand (originally paid $2/yard and I started with one yard and there is still some left); ribbon - scraps on hand
* Balloons: $13 (Emily LOVES balloons still, so these were a special treat. I was misquoted the price, so I probably would have bought less balloons if I'd realized - but it was too late in the end.)
* Cake: $1.50 for doll head at Michael's using a 50% off coupon.
* Cinderella dress for her gift: less than $5
* Cereal of choice and lunch out at Chick-Fil-A: about $10

Total spent: $43.00 (Almost half of this was spent on balloons and special food for breakfast and lunch - so not too bad I think)


MyHeartIsAlwaysHome said...

$43...Wow! It looks like you spent more then that on the party alone. Love Target clearance, I am heading out there this morning. Great job!

BTW... Emily is just beautiful!

Grace said...

Awe Monica everything turned out wonderful. What a special day for your special girl. Like I have said before, your ability to plan way ahead amazes me.

Paige said...

I love that you got the dress two years ago. I should think about that, especially since it's just after halloween lots of costumes are on sale and my kids love superhero themed parties.
Thanks for sharing her special day.

Anonymous said...

Dear Monica -- what a delightful day you planned for Emily! You are gifted with attention to detail, thinking ahead, and knowing what your family members like! She clearly had a wonderful time -- thanks for sharing these photos!

Love you, Mom

Susan P. said...

I think your goal was accomplished ~ seeing your little Emily stick out her foot just like a "princess" shows that she felt just like one! Looks like a perfect day, and on a budget, too! YAY;o)

carrie said...


What a wonderful party--wish I could've been there. Loved seeing all the special touches and the delight on Emily's face.

Carrie said...

Wowee I am impressed!!! Great job!
God bless :)

Liz said...

That is wonderful! $43.00 is NOT too bad at all! What I was wondering is what type of glass you put at the top of your mason jar to put the candle in. Thanks so much. Elizabeth

jayedee said...

your children are blessed to have you as a mommy!

kimi said...

WHAT A CUTE CUTE CUTE birthday. you hiring your services out to seattle yet? ;) I'm going to have to look that book up, it looks amazing!

melissa said...

What a special day for your daughter. I love how you refer to your girls as "ladies" - that's really what they are in the process of!

The book that you read is a perfect choice - did you know that there is also a coloring book that goes along with it?

thehomespunheart said...

Liz: a glass flowerpot available at craft stores (Michael's has them on sale for 3/$1 now and then) fits on top of a regular mouth (not wide-mouth) canning jar!

Melissa: I did not know about the coloring book - thanks for the heads up! :)

Thanks for all the lovely comments! Kimi - you are an awesome party planner! But, I'd love to visit Seattle someday - so maybe I should think about hiring myself out :)!

Tiany said...

Hello , this is my first visit to your blog and i have thoroughly enjoyed perusing through your posts :-)

I especially love this post as i have 4 little boys and to see this pink, frilly, princess party is such a treat! You did a wonderful job, what a fun and frugal party!!

Blessings to you,

Amy said...

Excellent job! You did a great job on your budget too. I have that Pampered Chef batter bowl and was planning to make that cake for Emily next year for her birthday. I think the frosting added dimension to her dress too so don't worry about it being that smooth :) That is what I am going to tell myself anyway!

You did a fabulous job! Thank you so much for sharing!

PS- I hope you liked the pizza dough! I was so thrilled to see it made the birthday menu!!

Anonymous said...

How special and the price is awesome!!
Oh, I made your potato soup the other day and it was delicious as well the fresh apple muffins we had the next morning! Yum, yum!!

Carmen said...

Wow! Sounds like the little princess had a splendid day! How fun!


Tessa said...

Wow, wow, WOW! What a great job you did, Monica! I would have loved this as a child.

Anonymous said...

Dear Monica:

As usual you outdid yourself in planning Emily's 3rd birthday party. Thanks so much for sharing all the pictures. Of course, she is adorable...and the party decorations, ideas, food etc. were all so special. Just what I'd expect from you, though! I know Emily indeed had a "Happy Birthday".

Love, Grandma

Liberty said...

What a beautiful party! Good job! :)

Barbie@ Mamaology said...

Such fun:) I had to smile BIG thinking of my 1st daughter at 3 (she is 7 now). She too LOVED Cinderella and got the entire outfit that year also.

What a fun party you put together!!!

Heather said...

What a perfectly lovely day, and what special memories! And how well you slept that night after blessing your precious little lady!

Jammy said...

WOW that is a wonderful looking party. I wish I could get to the stores more often to find good deals like these....NICE! I LOVE the cake by the way. I've never made one like that, but it is so NEAT!

Jenn ;-)

Crissi said...

Great job Monica - looks everyone had a GREAT time! You are an inspiration - keep up the good work!!

Christine said...

You are so creative! I love your idea of reading that book! Blessings.

Adena said...

What a wonderful party for your little princess!! I have been wanting to get the boy version of that book! I feel like a glean so many ideas from your site that I hope this is my chance to give back a little. To make the cake smoother - once the icing has crusted a little, dip a spatula in very hot water and *quickly* wipe over the surface. This will smooth it out. You can also take a paper towel with a pretty design (like polka dots)and after the icing crusts, lay the paper towel over it and gently press it into the surface. When you peel the paper towel back, the icing will be smoother and will have the transfer of dots (or whatever the pattern is) from the paper towel. Hope this helps!

thehomespunheart said...

Adena - Thanks for the tip about the icing! I'll be filing that away for next time! :)