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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

a second birthday party {Jake turns two!}

We had an absolute blast celebrating Jake's second birthday this weekend!

I may or may not have stressed all week long about the dismal weather forecast. And up until the literal last minute, I really wasn't sure if the weather would hold out for our outside party. But at 2pm, the sun came out, the skies were blue and we had a perfect party day! 70 and sunny! Clearly God knew what He was doing and I should just mind my own business.

If you saw the sweet invitations already, you know that we decided on a train themed party. 
{as if we had a choice with this train obsessed little man}

Since all of the kiddos were 3 and under, I decided to have a variety of stations all around the backyard so they could run and play at their own leisure.

This was a station where the kids could ride a small Thomas the Train around the tracks. Great for anyone 3 and under because there's no steering. Even some babies got in the on the action..

And as you can see, Jake and his buddy Ben even broke all safety rules for a piggy back ride on Thomas.

You can grab yours here {the railroad sign is a separate item}. Mine was purchased for $50 at a local bargain shop, an awesome deal since Jake is crazy about this thing.

I purchased some little wooden trains at Hobby Lobby and set out a table with brushes, smocks and washable paint. Both the kids and adults had fun here!

Isn't it a kids' party law that there must be a bouncy house?

Since Jake loves to jump in them, we had the full intentions of renting a small bouncy house for his party. So imagine my excitement when I stumbled upon this small Little Tikes house for $25 at a local kid's consignment sale two weeks ago! $25! I couldn't believe it!

This was more of a last minute idea that I had. A photo booth just seemed so neat for a picture spot! We made this from a 4' x 8' sheet of plywood. I drew all of the shapes and JB cut everything out with a jig saw. Then a little spray paint and boom, photo booth.
{It's staked into the ground behind the wheels.}

What is a train party without a pretty epic amount of trains and tracks for the kids to play on?
We got out all of Jake's Thomas the Train tracks and engines {a massively scary amount} and set up a huge play area on a 10' x 12' tarp. Probably the most popular station!

I think that all of the kids and parents had a pretty fun time. Everyone got along marvelously and seemed to really enjoy each station. Several even cried when they had to leave, which I take as a sign of a good party, haha!

And this momma had a fun time putting it together.
Here are a few of the decorative details...

We also had some cute grab bags for the kids.
The personalized bags held conductor hats, bandanas, and a train whistle.

I searched high and low to find some muslin bags locally, and by the time I realized that I was going to have to order online, it was too late. So I ended up sewing these drawstring bags myself using this tutorial. And since the muslin is so thin, I just placed a picture of the train and name behind the fabric and was able to trace the design on top. A super quick and easy craft that made for a great add on.

All in all, it was a perfect, beautiful, crazy fun day! Exactly the type of great time with family and friends that I wanted Jake to have for his second birthday. He was overly spoiled with presents and love, and I can't help but feel like our whole family is surrounded by some of the best folks on the planet.

So little man, I hope your special day was fabulous! Here's another bright, beautiful year with you!

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