Friday, August 19, 2011

Madeline Party

Ava's official birthday was last Sunday, but the celebration started Friday and didn't end until bedtime Sunday. That's the nice thing about a Sunday birthday, especially if you're turning six.

On Friday night, my father-in-law and his wife kicked off the celebration with a visit and dinner, and, of course, gifts for the birthday girl.

The celebration continued on Saturday when my parents came up. I think they topped everyone, gift-wise, when they surprised Ava with Molly, another American Girl doll. Note the expression of pure elation:

They also gave her the cutest bunk bed for Molly and Ava's other doll, Emily. They got it from a man at the farmer's market, and it was a fraction of what they would have paid at American Girl, and it is so nice! My mom painted it.
I won't bore you with all the gift-opening pictures, but let's just say it was kind of like Christmas in our house on Sunday. Ava came to the breakfast table to find this pile waiting for her. Ridiculous.
It was basically an American Girl-fest. She got a couple of outfits (which were actually the cheapies from Michael's), the AG wheelchair, and the Get Better Set, which includes crutches and casts. I'm not sure where Ava's obsession with orthopedics is coming from, but you better believe I plan to encourage it. 

And, yes, of course she got something from the Lilly store. Duh.

She also got a couple of books, including one I am just crazy about, called Just Being Audrey. It's about Audrey Hepburn, and the illustrations are just fantastic. 


Tres bien! 
Now, naturally, Ava doesn't love the book quite as much as I do, but I think one viewing of Breakfast at Tiffany's will take care of that. 

So, the rest of the day was spend preparing for Ava's party. She had requested a Madeline theme, which was a little challenging. We decided to do a couple of crafts and watch the Madeline movie.

The inspiration:

Since I had scheduled the party for 4:30pm, I knew I had all the time in the world to prepare. And I really thought I had it together. I had done all my craft supply shopping during the week, had ordered the cake, and the house was mostly clean. So really, all I had to do was a couple of teensy little things, and we'd be set.

Wrong, wrong, wrong.

My first problem was with the Eiffel Tower cookies I had decided to make for the girls to decorate. I got a great cookie cutter from Amazon, but it was HUGE. I didn't think it would be a problem. However, thanks to Pillsbury sugar cookie dough (yes, the refrigerated kind) not being all that user-friendly, it took me 2 freaking hours to make 24 cookies. 

In between cookie batches, I used my glue gun to attach satin ribbon to straw hats. This was my attempt to make hats like Madeline and her friends wear. No real glitches there, but I think my lack of craft skills was really evident. 

Next, I needed to attach tags to the favor bags. My hole punch was not cooperating at all. Have you ever tried to hole-punch a plastic bag? It doesn't work so well. This was the best I could do:

I managed to throw a few streamers up, as well as a banner, but honestly, they aren't blog-photo-worthy.
Before the girls arrived, I grabbed a quick shower, and tried hard to look cute, knowing that I would be assisting in cookie-decorating as well as painting. 

As soon as the girls arrived, Davis woke up from his nap. He was so excited to see a flock of hat-wearing girls come into his room.  

The girls got to work decorating their cookies. Davis got in on the action, too, and also insisted on having a hat. (This picture will be saved and shown during his rehearsal dinner).
Next, it was time to paint the masterpieces. I had gotten 5x7 canvases at an art-supply store, and just let the girls use Crayola kids paint (washable) to paint anything they wanted. 

Of course, the little brother couldn't be left out.

Six-year-old LOVE present time. Then again, so do 35-year olds. 

To get some energy out before the movie, we decided it was time to go outside. 

Ava and Frazier have been friends since they were in 2-year old preschool together:

My birthday girl and me:

Sweet friends:

Hugs with Daddy:

Next up was cake;

Then it was movie time. Ahh....a few minutes of quiet;

After the guests left, I had a large glass of wine and about passed out from exhaustion. In the meantime, Ava and Davis kept their own little party going:

The party was a success, but it's clear that my crafting skills need some help. Like, professional help. It's okay, though. If it wasn't for people like me, all you crafty types wouldn't be able to shine so bright. 

I'm off now to enjoy a few more days at the beach. The kids and I have been here since Tuesday, and have to go back home for the last week of summer on Sunday. I'm sad that it's all coming to an end, but I think I'll be happy to get back into a normal routine.

Hope everyone has a great weekend!



  1. You deserve an award. What a great party! And those bunk beds are precious. blogger must be acting up today because only half of your photos loaded for me, but what I saw was great. Cute, cute cake? Didn't get to see the cookies, but that was an ordeal. I'm terrible at stuff like that.

    Good job!

  2. Party idea is really very unique and nicely managed. Went for an official meet organized by my colleague at one of the sophisticated venue NYC recently. Food arrangements were simple and desserts were yummy as well. Liked the sober lighting and some innovative speeches given by seniors.