A sweet party for a sweet 12 year-old

If I'm not mistaken, it has rained almost every year on the day that The Pea has had a birthday party.  This year, we finally wised up and realized that the best way to ensure clear skies would be to hold her party in late April instead of early April -- less showers, more flowers.  Here's how we celebrated:

It can be intimidating to think of decorating an outdoor space for a party -- there's so much space to fill!  Fortunately, our back yard is already lends itself to picture-perfect parties and we didn't have to do much to make the place cheerful and festive.  We hung paper flowers, butterflies and crepe streamers from our 2 market umbrellas, and taped a few Happy Birthday signs on our fence and garage door.  I spread pink and green tablecloths on our tables, and for centerpieces I filled tall beer glasses with pink and green gumballs, then stuck lollipops and felt pig ornaments (The Pea loves pigs!) into the middle of the gumballs.

I was contacted by Stacie Gillelen of Dragonfly Designs, a local jewelry class and party company, who offered to host a jewelry making activities for the girls.  I'll be posting a more detailed review of the experience in a couple of days, but to make a long story short, it was AWESOME.  For two whole hours, The Pea and her guests were busy making bracelets, necklaces, earrings, combs, keychains, hair extensions and more!  Stacie and her assistants brought all the materials and supervised the whole thing, so I had time to prepare lunch -- and make a few items of jewelry for myself :)  Thanks, Stacie, for showing the girls such an amazing time!

At first, 3Po and Jammy hung back, saying jewelry making was too girly for them.  But Stacie reminded them that they could make keychains or backpack clips, and that Mother's Day was coming up, so they sat down and tried it -- and they loved it!  Both boys got really creative (and yes, they ended up making bracelets and necklaces too).

While the girls were busy making jewelry, I put out macacons and strawberries for them to nibble on.  For lunch, we brought out the panini press and each girl made her own panini with ham, turkey, cheese, tomatoes, mushrooms and pesto.  I kept the drinks simple -- just iced lemon water -- because there were a TON of sweet things coming.....

..... for starters, we had fruit kabobs. I used red and green fruits -- strawberries, kiwi and honeydew melon -- since most of the decorations were pink and green.

Instead of a birthday cake, The Pea had cupcakes with pink pigs piped on top!  We had them custom made by Sibby's Cupcakes, who did a fantastic job.   I sent them a jpeg of the pig, and they were able to replicate it to a T (or should I say P).  These are also the best vanilla cupcakes I've ever had -- better than anything we make, or even Kara's or Sprinkles.

As if all that sugar weren't enough, we moved the whole party over to Powell's Sweet Shoppe, where we let the girls loose on a candy scavenger hunt!  They were given a list of 30 candies to hunt for throughout the shop.

That might sound like an easy task, but Powell's is so full of candy, with bins and boxes everywhere you look, so it actually took them quite a while -- about 40 minutes!  They had so much fun, and they got to keep all the candy on their list.

At the end of the scavenger hunt, each girl and boy was given a scoop of gelato.

It was a sweet end to a sweet day, and the perfect way to celebrate The Pea's birthday!

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