This upcoming Thursday marks two whole years since Charlie Carter came into this world. And what a two years it has been!!!
So that calls for a celebration for him! And celebrate we did this weekend!! I have to say as his party got closer it was way more fun than last year because he actually understood what was going in and would talk all about his party.
Needless to say, as planning began, I knew I didn't want it at our house. While we do have a much bigger house then last year, factor in that we have a 3 week old (if she came on her actually due date, we would have a 2 week old), I didn't want to have to deal with he cleaning before, extensive set up and then Clean up.
Enter Little Monkey Bizness.
We have taken Charlie there a few times in the last year and he just loved it. A huge indoor playground. A win for getting rid of some two year old energy and it's in a contained area so you don't have to worry about them running away like at a park (wait- your child doesn't do that?). Factor in that this kid was born in the middle of July which usually means HOT temperatures- it is inside so no one has to sweat. Excellent. Add in the fact the whole thing is an hour and a half? Even better because I can fit feeding my little baby girl in too!
I booked it and never looked back. I could have for sure taken advantage of all the services they offer, like food, drinks, etc. but if you know me, that's not how I roll. I'm more of a semi-homemade type of girl. And it worked it great.
Seriously, I keep thinking back to the smile on his cute face as he was sprinting between slides and can't help but smile. It was so fun! For everyone!
Finally for some pictures!
The best picture I got of his shirt that I made for him. Maddie had a matching onesie too! Duh!!
A pic of my uncle helping Charlie with the zip line- he, my aunt and cousin all came in town along with my grandma!! So special of them to be there and to meet Maddie too!
Carter cousins going up
Carter cousins sliding down...
And Carter cousins crashing.
Yes, this did end in tears for Charlie...but he got over it quickly.
Arden loved the place too!! And we are SO happy that she and her mom took a break from moving to come play!
And she likes doing yoga with cousin Maren!
Big cousins are the best for catching him at the end!
So the package we got was for 12 kids to play with one other party group for an hour and then 30 minutes in the party room. The catch? You only have 10 minutes to set up for the party because there is another party in there before. So in planning everything, I had to keep hat in mind! But knowing that, I was able to make it work with a few extra hands!
Cousin Kenlie in the birthday chair!! Haha!
Some cute signs I hung up. All the printables, including the invitation (below) are from an etsy shop called Storybook Lane Crafts...
The room all set up waiting for the cute little kids to come in!
Treat table and presents.
Since te party was at 3pm and snacks were at 4, we didn't so a full meal, but I wanted to have enough snacks and a good mix of healthy/sweet. Of course more sweets though!
Above are the following:
Jungle mix: pretzels sticks, Cheerios, and white and milk chocolate chips
Grapes for Apes: cut up grapes
Monkey Vines: a whopping 5lbs of red licorice from Costco (yum!)
Monkey tails: White chocolate dipped pretzel sticks with sprinkles
Monkeys in a blanket: little smokes wrapped with crescent rolls (cut those in thirds)
And then the cupcakes. They turned out really cute (an idea from Pinterest) and actually tasted decent too. Just had a mix of chocolate and vanilla cupcakes and then bought black and red glitter frosting and mini Nilla wafers (halved for the ears) and regular size Nilla wafers (with the top 1/3 cut off for mouth). Surprisingly, they didn't take too long to put together!!
The party table!
My cute little birthday boy enjoying his ice cream!
And the adults - there were lots of them!!
I love Arden's face - she was all about the chocolate icing!
And then Arden and Charlie jumped in the birthday chair for this adorable picture!! Only fitting since they are only 3 weeks apart and she will be 2 in just a few weeks!
And we tried to snap a family picture. Ha. This was good enough!! Kind of shows Maddie and Charlie's matching shirts that I made.
Overall, it was a success. It wasn't too stressful for me getting everything together, the kids seriously had a BLAST - which is the most important part, and Charlie somewhat behaved. Ha - the terrible twos were already in full swing. He woke up from his nap SO mad at life...but luckily when he got there, he was happy to play with his friends! We made it through about 1/2 of the presents and then he just walked out of the room, pretty much saying "I'm done with this". Such is life with a 2 year old, right? On a positive side, it actually made it kind of fun because he had more presents to open at home! Oh Charlie. But the staff there were so nice and helpful - I would highly recommend Little Monkey Bizness if you just want to go play inside with your kids or for a party too!
I carried Maddie around in the Ergo most of the time and she slept, which was nice. During the cake/treats/presents, I handed her over to my mom, but she was so good! She's seriously a wonderful baby, which made the whole experience easier 3 weeks postpartum.
So now are on to one last celebration on Thursday for his REAL birthday, which will entail a fun breakfast, school and then a fun dinner at Fritz's, which is a tradition we started next year. Seriously, still in denial my little boy is TWO!!!
Thanks for all who helped with the party and everyone who came. It was a bummer we couldn't invite EVERYONE, but it was nice to have the 12 kid limit with the party package and keep it somewhat small.
Maybe next year we can combine parties?? Or is that wishful thinking? ;)