all aboard

A&R turned two last week.  We had their party this weekend, and as always we had the most perfect weather.  We get lucky that way.  The theme was Thomas & Friends, since that is what the boys loves the most.  I swear, Aiden walks around say "Thomas" & "Percy" all day long.  He knows all the train's names better than I do.  And they both beam whenever they hear the opening song on tv.  

I'm not a huge fan of commercial character decor, so I wanted to do some DIY stuff a la Pinterest.  My inspiration can be found here, here, here & here.  However, because I am not crafty at all and since I am a huge procrastinator, we ended up with something slightly less suitable for Pinterest and pretty much all commercial character.  Didn't matter much, because everyone had a great time anyway.  And I was stressed anyway.  But the day is done and all went well so I call it a success.

I ordered a bunch of stuff from Amazon, Party City and Oriental Trading.  I like to buy everything online because it really makes life easier.  I'm also really good at stating the obvious.  What I hate are the million boxes left over after I receive all my goodies and when it looks like UPS threw up in my foyer. 

We began decorating the house the night before, since the party was scheduled at noon and Seamus had a job interview that morning which would cut into the time I had him available for help.  This seemed like a great idea, until Ryan decided that on this night he would not sleep unless he was being held.  So I sent hubs to bed with Ryan, and tried to decorate by myself.  This bad boy kept me company though:

After all was said and done, this is what the inside decor looked like:

Food table with a 6 foot hero, fruits/veggies & dip, chips & pretzels, cheese/crackers/pepperoni, and of course cupcakes. 
Tablecloths from Party City & Oriental Trading, balloons from Party City, pennant banner from Amazon, cupcake stands from Party City.

Conductor hats as party favors from Amazon, Thomas cups and goody bags from Party City.

The day of the party my sister and cousin took the kids so that I wouldn't have them underfoot while trying to get everything else ready.  Seamus came home from his interview in the nick of time and took it upon himself to set up the yard.  At this point I was running around like a chicken with it's head cut off.  It was already noon and I hadn't showered yet.  Ahh the life. 

Our family and friends also took it upon themselves to help cook some food for our buffet so all we really prepared were a few dishes.  On our menu were a 6 foot hero (half American, half Italian), baked ziti, pulled pork, chicken, vegetables, mac n cheese, and stuffed cabbage.  We had plenty of food.  And two cakes.  Which was way too much.  The leftovers are sitting in our fridge, begging to be eaten. 

Thomas cake from Baskin Robbins (please excuse the poor picture taking)

Cake from local bakery purchased by Grandma

As an activity, I had the littles decorate train shaped sugar cookies.  I was supposed to bake them the night before, but I didn't.  So there I was baking cookies in the middle of the party.  I'm glad I did though, because the kids seemed to enjoy it.  

We created a makeshift table from some of the boxes that A&R's gifts came in and kept the fun outside to minimize the mess-making

We had cake and the kids didn't cry this time when we sang Happy Birthday to them.  And we didn't cry either.  We let them open their gifts and everyone went on their merry way with a doggy bag filled with cake.  

 We had a great time and we are so lucky to have such a wonderful group of people who we call family.  They love our boys something fierce.  And as a parent it really tugs at your heart strings to see so many people care for your children.  So thank you for all the wishes and all the gifts for our boys.  We appreciate your love.  

Oh, and how could I forget the outfits I made them wear?  My little train conductors. 

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