Thursday, January 19, 2012

sock monkey birthday party...the details

The little guy's birthday falls smack dab in the middle of Christmas and New Years... this year I discovered that’s a pretty crapola time for birthday parties…my poor baby…but anyone who knows me will tell you I wasn't about to let that stop me! 

I guess I have a serious Martha Stewart complex and I LOVE nothing more than torturing myself brainstorming party ideas, menus, signature cocktails….perusing pinterest and making ridiculous boards full of insane and impossibly perfect ideas…stalking the heck out of etsy sellers who must think I have lost every one of my marbles….

The thing is, like lots of things in my life (just starting to recognize this pattern actually….uh oh…) I have a bit of a problem with the execution. Maybe I peak too soon? Maybe I just can’t handle the pressure? Maybe I just need more vacation days? But crazy me scheduled this part on a Saturday with no day off before it to prep….will I never learn?

Well, thank the baby jesus and my bottle of crazy pills because, with the exception of a few minor hiccups, things went noticeably smoother than they have at any of our cinco de mayo parties, where I typically go BSC* and wind up in the fetal position under the kitchen table chewing on used up lime peels and jalepeno stems and crying into my dos equis.

I didn’t take as many pictures as I had hoped…the lighting in the basement was downright awful…had we known it was going to be a freak gorgeous 60 degree day in January (?) we would have set the whole soiree up outside on the deck! The kids (and some of the adults) spent most of the party out in the hottub and running around the yard in t-shirts….it was crazy!

Poor little Ben had some sort of horrible…I don’t even know what….THING going on. He was super whiny and wouldn’t eat anything and the diapers he was putting out? Not of this earth. Poor Sweet Boy definitely had a virus from hell BUT he pulled through like a champ, as best as he could…..he wanted nothing to do with the cake I slaved over, or my famous macaroni & cheese (ok fine. It’s Martha’s macaroni & cheese….damn her!) but I didn’t hold it against him...his family and friends all got to shower him with love and kisses and presents, hang out together and party, stuff their faces full of yummy food and celebrate a very, very special day!

The Menu

Spinach dip & tortilla chips
Ruffles & onion dip
Crackers & blue crab dip
Pretzels, cashews, chocolate covered pretzels, banana chips

6’ Italian hero
6’ mozzarella, tomato and basil hero
The world’s yummiest chicken fingers
Ranch * BBQ sauce * honey mustard
Caesar salad with homemade ciabbatta croutons

big, crunchy, garlicky, buttery croutons! yum!!!

Fruit skewers
Brown sugar sour cream dip

The heros, chicken fingers and most delicious honey mustard you ever tasted were catered from Lombardi’s Market which was such a pleasure to work with and has the most amazing food.

Not sure if you can really tell in these pictures, but our friend Matt is a total blast. He tied balloons to the birthday hat...just enough weight so the hat would float around the room in mid had to be there....I wish you were!

thanks, Nana Lou, for my AWESOME tiffany & co. fireman set! so cool!!

The crazy-awesome sock monkey wrapping paper and adorable striped paper straws are from House 8810 which i am so excited I discovered. They have the coolest stuff! And they include your packing slip tucked in this preciousl little cloth bag that looks like a manila documents envelope! I'm a sucker for details like that. I will definitely be ordering from them again!

The printables, including the world’s cutest return address labels, favor tags and door sign which are sadly, not pictured, all came from stylish celebrations on etsy and I can’t recommend them more! She was fantastic to work with, so sweet, patient and accommodating even when I was clearly about one pinterest idea away from a nervous breakdown and seriously, without her, this party would have just been a red polka dot tablecloth and me, in the fetal position under the table, chewing on banana peels and crying into a cheap bottle of cabernet.

The next day, Ben slept in until 11am…then crashed out again for his longest nap ever from 1pm until 4:00! Safe to say, between his wild birthday party and his tummy bug, this little birthday boy was knocked out!!


* = Bat Shit Crazy....cuz, obviously.


Anonymous said...

Oh how I love me some Matt. No party is complete without him there.
I love all the details. I've said it before and will most likely continue saying it until it come true, but you should be a party planner. Imagine what you could accomplish with 10 hours a day of dedication instead of clocking in at work!
Now, come one over and help me with Emberly's.

Andi said...

yeah-totally amazing and I'm so pissed you live on the other side of the country and we couldn't be there. I know you could have used me as hired help. ;) All for a free stay in my bedroom upstairs (now that the hole is fixed!). ;) Everything looks great, and I'm so happy that Ben got to have an awesome first birthday party (even if he WAS feeling under the weather)!
And please tell Matt that I love him. I mean seriously, I know the thoughts are mutal, and that his wife doesn't mind. ;)

noreenmarie said...

It was such a great party-you did a fabulous job, as always. The food was awesome, Rach. :) Loved all the pictures! Can't believe he slept so long Sunday! Poor guy. :(

Skye said...

I am LMAO at this; thank the baby jesus and my bottle of crazy pills - I don't know why but I can't stop laughing - LOL!
It looks like Ben had a very awesome party - great planning and decor - love it! First birthdays are such a big deal - they only turn one once! Good job! Sorry he did not feel well though - I hope he is doing better now! :)

Amber said...

You crack me up with the chewing on banana peels comment. It looks like his party was a blast and he is the cutest little monkey!! Great job!

Ashley {hudson's happenings} said...

omg. "chewing on used up lime peels and jalepeno stems and crying into my dos equis." I just died. Laughing.

This pretty party belongs in a magazine....way to go Martha Stewart! I've been dying to see it...and I can not believe the CUTENESS! The cake looks amazing! I'm sorry he didn't want much to do with it, but Hudson totally did the same thing to his 1 year cake. :( In fact, he cried when he saw it. And there was no virus to blame for his behavior. ;)

Oh my gosh! How about that menu?! Beats the heck out of the Barbecue Pork that I usually choose to serve (cheap & easy!). I am seriously just in awe of your party throwing skills...what a lucky birthday boy, and what lucky guests! YUM!

Now...the most important part of all: Sweet Precious Beautiful Bennett~ bless his cute little heart. I want to squeeze that little guy. :) So sorry he was feeling bad, but he looks so sweet and happy in the pics. I would say Birthday 1 was a BIG success!! Way to go, pretty Mama! xoxo :D

Anonymous said...

I stumbled across your blog via pinterest and was wondering where you got the invitations for his party? I'm planning a sock monkey theme for my little guy's 1st bday and those are so cute!!

rachel said...

the invitations are from


thanks for stopping by!

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much!