Monday, May 23, 2016

Caroline's Mickey Mouse 2nd Birthday Party

On May 7th Caroline turned two and we celebrated with friends and family over the most perfect afternoon of hot dogs, cake, bouncing and more. It was pretty much her dream party. Here's a recap of the best day in way too many pictures!
Before our guests arrived we took some family photos with Taylor. She knocked them out of the park and was magically able to get Caroline, Thomas and Jackson to cooperate for dozens of pictures in under 15 minutes! She even got them to wear Mickey ears! Huge success.
How cute is this birthday girl in her smocked Minnie Mouse dress?
My good friend Sara made these adorable Mickey shirts for Thomas and Jackson.
 Time for the party to begin!
We had just over 50 guests attend the party, half of which were kiddos! Thankfully the weather was perfect and we were able to host the party in the backyard. 
Mimi and Grandad surprised Caroline on the morning of her birthday with a bouncey house! I've never seen this girl so dang excited. She's been in a few of these recently so before the house even finished inflating she had already kicked her shoes off and spent the entire party bouncing around with friends.
We also filled Caroline's pool with 6 bags of sand for the kids to dig around in.
Last year the biggest hit of the party was the water table so we made sure to have that out, erghhhh, next to the sand box....
By the end of the party we had a mud pit in the pool and in the table! ha! We totally saw that coming though and loved watching the kids have a blast with it.
For lunch we set up a hot dog bar. This was probably one of the best food buffets I've ever done because it required very little work to put together and I could leave it unattended the entire party! So once the party started I didn't have to worry about replenishing or reheating any items.
I owe a huuuuuge thank you to my friend Kristen for giving me the Hot Diggity Dog sign, all the hot dog bar recipe signs, some fun pom poms and a few other things which made our buffet such a hit!
The Hot Dog Bar cast of characters:
  • Hot Dogs & Buns: The morning of the party I slow cooked 60 hotdogs in a crockpot on low for 4 hours (by themselves, no water added) and dumped them into disposable warming trays right before guests arrived. So easy. 
  • Baked Beans: I poured these in another disposable warming tray and let them slowly warm in the oven for about an hour before the party. Again, so easy.
  • Chips
  • Dill pickles
  • Cole Slaw
  • Condiments: ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, relish
  • Toppings: lettuce, onion, tomato, bacon, cheddar cheese, peppers, chili
  • Serve ware: Red, yellow & black napkins, red & yellow plates, red & yellow forks
I also had a few snacks available for the kiddos: cheerios, animal crackers, pretzels and Mickey shaped cheese!
And for drinks we served milk and juice boxes for the littles and mimosas, beer and rose for the adults!
I was so unbelievably impressed with the $17 cake that Harris Teeter made for Caroline!
We have ordered their round white cake with raspberry filling many times before and it's always such a huge hit. They really do make the most incredible tasting cakes! And they nailed the design too!
Caroline of course made sure to run her fingers all over the cake before passing out slices to her friends.
Caroline's best friend from school was also by her side the entire time. These two are so dang cute together and share birthdays one month apart. Here they are just chatting over cake together like best buds. Gah, I have loved watching this friendship grow!
Once all of the kiddos were loaded up on sugar it was time for more bouncing, sliding and belly button flashing!
I am still in disbelief that this picture actually happened...
I have to admit, not being stuck in the kitchen replenishing food items or being attached to my camera trying to capture every moment made all the difference for me. This year I actually mingled with guests, played with my kids, drank a few mimosas and enjoyed the party. I am so thankful Taylor took the photography off my hands so I could focus on what really mattered and what I want Caroline to remember...
All of Caroline's friends took home Minnie Mouse cookies as a party favor.
 And that's a wrap! 
Well, actually, let me leave you with one last moment of icing kisses goodness...
Party Sources
Photography: Taylor Stading Photography
Caroline's Smocked Minnie Mouse Dress: Smocked Candy Etsy Shop
Thomas & Jackson's Mickey shirts: Facebook // Blog // Email
Mickey Mouse Welcome/Goodbye Signs: Free Pinterest Download
Little Tikes Jump n' Slide Bouncer: Amazon
Fisher Price Spiralin' Seas Water Table: Amazon
Disposable Pop Up Sterno Warming Food Trays: Amazon
Disposable Red & Yellow Napkins, Plates and Utensils: Walmart
Minnie Mouse Cake: Harris Teeter
Mickey & Minnie Cookie Favors: Delicate Delites



  1. It looks like it was a great party and little Minnie Mouse was adorable :)

  2. What a perfect party!!! Such a good idea to let someone else take photography duty off your hands - and you ended up with amazing photos of your sweet family that you will cherish forever :) Please share - where are your white pants (or jeans?) from? I am on the hunt for the perfect pair for summer!

  3. AHH! so fun! the bouncy house looks like it was a hit! xo jillian - cornflake dreams

  4. This might just be one of the cutest parties I have EVER seen! I love all the Minnie Mouse touches! Also, your children's outfits were too adorable! Happy Birthday Caroline!

  5. So sweet! The photos turned out great! Love the idea of the hot dog bar - it looks super cute and totally easy to deal with. Great thought!

  6. Love love love! Can we just live closer so we can share party supplies?! Think of the time and money we could save ha ha Everything looks great and I love your photos so much. Having a photographer is a wonderful idea, as it's the thing I struggle most with when trying to entertain and be part of things. Beautiful party- beautiful family!

  7. Oh my goodness, seriously the cutest birthday party ever!! Everything was perfect (and no hassle which is even better ;)) So glad everyone had an amazing time!!

  8. Super super cute! I love their clothes!


  9. Picture perfect from start to finish! I love all the little details, right down to their outfits. Glad you had such a beautiful day for a fabulous celebration!

  10. What a perfect party - the weather, the decor, the food, everything! I think your party posts are always my favorite. Glad you guys had an amazing time!

  11. Worlds best momma!! I just love seeing you playing with your littles, warms my heart! And you throw the BEST parties!

  12. We did an "Oh Two-dles" party when Cash turned 2. It was such a fun theme to do! Being a WI girl, I just have to comment on those two boys wearing their Packers jerseys. :) Have a great Monday!

  13. cutest party EVER!!! seriously!!

  14. So amazed that you guys always get such great family photos! I can't ever get my bunch to cooperate, ha! Such a fun party! And black frosting--you go mama!! ;)

  15. Another adorable party! Caroline looks like she had the time of her life!

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  17. Ahhh what an AMAZING party!!! Looks like yall had a blast!!!

    Do you think you'll ever do another day in the life post? I'm due with my first baby this fall and am so curious how you're able to do so much with two littles and work full time!! I'm going back to work after 3 mo and would love to see how you schedule your day! :)

    1. Today's post was inspired by your request! :)

  18. Such a sweet party! That hot dog bar is too cute and I love the picture of Miss Caroline with a mouth full of black icing!

  19. I absolutely love the idea of having someone else there to take the pictures! Great idea! The party looked like a great time! You did an amazing job on the details! Such a beautiful family!

  20. PRECIOUS! I LOVE the hot dog buffet idea! Stealing it!!!!! Happy Birthday, Caroline!

  21. Caroline is such a ham!! I love how cute she is!! She tried to play it coy, but she was so excited!! I can't believe what a great job they did on the cake too - how perfect is that?! Love, love, love all these happy pictures!

  22. What a magical party for a special Minnie Mouse - well done mama!! And the best parties are the ones that you can enjoy and have fun too x


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