disneyside at home celebration

mickey mouse party, minnie mouse party, disney kids party

Before even having visited Disney World, (which Juliet had done 2 Decembers ago), she loved Mickey and his entire gang.  We have watched the show, played with the dolls, figurines, and Disney toys and have watched her growing up saying, “Oh toodles!” So when it came to celebrating her 3rd birthday at home with family, I decided to bring out all her Clubhouse characters and throw a Mickey Minnie 3rd birthday party.

mickey mouse party, mickey birthday, minnie mouse party

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The oversized “3” was just some cut up cardboard that I covered in 75cent gift wrap paper from Michael’s. I simply glued the paper onto the 3.  And used the remaining paper as: backdrop, dining table runner and dessert table decor.  Mickey and Minnie love black and white stripes and polka dots and so do I!

how to plan a kids birthday on a budget

minnie mouse party, mickey mouse party, mickey clubhouse, disney party

The dining room table was set with cheap paper plates, cups and straws from Target proving you don’t have to spend a lot to add a sophisticated level of decor to a kid’s party.  Just forgo the character plates and linens and opt for modern patterns and a coordinated look.  And much of this stuff was re-purposed party goods from past parties (i.e. the striped banner from my black and white party and halloween party, the mini party hats from our at-home new year’s bash).

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Each place setting was unique in its own way, yet coordinated still.

how to throw a disney kids party  mickey mouse party

And instead of traditional cone-shaped kids’ birthday hats, I opted for mickey ears and glitter top hats.  Even grandma got into it!

mickey mouse party

kids disney birthday party

The dinner menu consisted of breaded pork chops, roasted potatoes, panko crusted cauliflower, mixed vegetables, rice and these skewered fruit.  I considered making a Mickey themed menu and had a whole Pinterest board devoted to such ideas but in the end scrapped the idea in favor of foods that I knew the family would favor (over a hot-diggity dog bar for instance).

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At the last minute I was also able to have delivered these delectable Mickey mouse and Minnie mouse shaped cake pops from The Current Mood.  How cute are they??  I just stuck them into styrofoam rectangles. Easy peasy!

mickey and minnie desserts, disney desserts

My daughter loves cake and she loves lollipops.  These were the perfect mix!

minnie mouse cake pop(Notice her Minnie Mouse tights)?  I’m all about dressing in theme.

how to throw a minnie mouse kids birthday party

For fun, I posted Mickey’s face on a bare wall and asked the kids to pin Mickey’s smile after being twirled around with a blindfold on. Juliet since she was just 3 was given the distinct advantage of not being blindfolded.  Birthday girls get all the perks after all!

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Even daddy got in on the action.

minnie mouse kids birthday party

Juliet loved opening all her presents and especially loved her new ride-on, an electronic white/black motorcycle – notice how its colors match the party decor?  Nice job, daddy!

disney cute kids birthday party disneyside

Other entertainment included Mickey / Minnie Mouse toys like the ones below.  “If fun and fashion are what you seek,” these toys would totally satisfy!

mickey and minnie mouse toys

What a joy it was planning this party!  Thanks for taking a peek inside our Mickey clubhouse!  Please leave a comment with what you liked most!  And special thanks to BSM Media & Disney for sending us the sponsored #disneyside party supplies seen here (Mickey pin the smile game, Mickey clubhouse character straw attachments for instance).

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Stay tuned for birthday party #2 with all her school friends!

 

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I was selected as a host by Mom Select for Disney Side Celebrations and received a kit with decorations, party favors and other supplies to inspire me to plan an at home celebration.  I was asked to plan and execute party details on my own .   No monetary compensation was provided and the views and opinions are my own.

 

 

keep calm and sparkle on

This is all I could think when faced with the challenge of planning a princess party on minimal budget within 2 weeks for 8-10 2 year olds at my apartment.  I don’t have a nanny so all I could do was devote 30minutes each day to researching, planning, purchasing and setting up as soon as my #disneyside 20lb box of decor, and party favors arrived care of Disney and Mom Select Media.  (See earlier post about being a chosen blogger to host an at home celebration).  Somehow my prince charming of a husband put up with me and all the pink and purple that took over our house 2 weeks leading up to the celebration.  I swear you’d have thought Sophia The First’s castle had exploded in our living room… For that somewhat pressured (and I say pressured because I’m a perfectionist) period, my head spun as I designed the kids dining area, brainstormed ways to create varied elevation at the snack station, and played with various activity ideas for the kids.

Because I like to stay strictly within a party theme, I opted to exclude using the Mickey decor and baking items received in my package.  I’ll save those for another festive moment in my 2 year old’s life.  And there were several items I chose to break apart and give away in the goody bags like the big box of Disney Princess chapsticks/glosses and box of Disney Princess stickers.  Here is what I ended up giving away as party favors.  Additionally, each guest is still waiting to receive the Princess in Training tee shirts gifted from my one of my event sponsors too since they did not arrive in time.

goody bag

And here was the final bag.  I topped off each white bag (bought at the dollar store where a 70 year old man hit on me) with one of the Sophia the First tiaras because I knew my guests were all arriving with their own sparkly head pieces.  goody bag

In addition to preparing goody bags for each guest, a very special, overstuffed bag was created as a prize package for the best dressed mommy and me duo to encourage guests to dress up and show off their princess style.  Here were the contents (some from Disney, some from me and my other sponsors).

jandghandmade

goody bag

Though honestly, my fashionista mommy friends always seem to be up for a kitschy theme (gotta love that) and are girly enough to enjoy dressing-up so it didn’t take much persuasion power on my end.  I was so thrilled that they took the dressing up as seriously as I did because it really added to the party and made for fun conversation starters.   What a way to kick-off NY Fashion Week, huh?

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As you can imagine, their outfits made it extremely easy for my doorman to recognize who my guests were-see invite here.  Who else would dress this way in NYC on a normal day??

frozen princess

Just my fab friends…  Aren’t they SO cute??  Winner was selected by popular vote and it was a tough call because all the duos were dazzling in their own way.  But in the end this is who took home the prize!  Totally deserving.

princesses

A Sophia the First coloring sheet (from my Disney package) that featured the Royal Academy and said “welcome” greeted guests at the front door as did a coat check.  Upon entering, guests heard music from Pandora’s “everyday princess” soundtrack in the background as they passed the hall of mirrors into the kids royal dining area.

princess partyDrinks were served and the princesses in training played politely, sharing the princess toys as we waited for all the guests to arrive.  Sophia the First’s movie played silently on the TV.

princess party

princess party

princess IMG_5192 I didn’t have Disney princess toys to go along with the theme so had a friend share some of her Disney princess dolls and other collectible toys at the party.

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And I created an accessory station in my bedroom using some old costume jewelry and Juliet’s necklaces and tiaras.  That was a big hit!  I presented the jewels along a chaise that was the perfect height for them to gaze into a mirror and try on sparkly jewelry.

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It was like shopping without the pressure to buy!  What girl doesn’t enjoy THAT?DSC_2362 IMG_5172

I also brought out Juliet’s purses because you know, princesses all have a weakness for purses!

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My sweet daughter was so good about sharing all her fashions, accessories and toys.  Mommy was proud.

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In addition, primping was encouraged.  My vanity featured a princess mani station. Who can resist a chubby toddler hand made even cuter with bows??

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And one of the bathroom mirrors had a princess message written on it, “mirror mirror on the wall who’s the fairest of them all?”

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Once everyone had arrived, we tried (I emphasize TRIED) to take a group shot of all our princesses in training but that proved to be a bit of a challenge with squirmy 2 year olds…

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toddlers in tiaras

So we had fun hamming it up for other shots..

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princess dress

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princess party kiss the frog  IMG_5184

After pictures (it’s always important to get the shots in before the kids start eating and ruining their outfits lol), the girls dined and sat on big girl thrones (kids chairs that I covered in white tees and tutus).    Surprisingly, the 2 year olds had no major mishaps.  They ate their tiara sandwiches, savory snacks and crown cupcakes in peace.  These princesses were on their BEST behavior!

disney princess partyHere you can see that I didn’t just lay the free Sophia the First plastic table cover down.  I first covered the table legs with a couple, never-used shower curtains that I keep for decorative event purposes like this (see the 1st birthday party that I threw), then I steamed, yes STEAMED the plastic tablecloth that Disney gave me because I’m anal like that, then I laid a ruffly, runner on top for my centerpiece desserts.  The layered additions gave the Sophia the First plastic cover a more elegant touch and elevated the look all together.

disneyside princess party

The mini-cupcakes were the perfect size for toddler hands (and appetites) and were simply bought at Whole Foods (along with the heart cookeis).  I was estatic to find the perfect pre-made shade of pink frosting and knew that all I had to do was add my fondant pre-made tiaras that I bought at Michaels for a customized, more couture look.  IMG_5276

My baby is an animal when it comes to devouring her cupcakes.  She was so good at obeying my orders to not touch the cupcakes until all her guests arrived that when it came time to eat, I let her have the requested 2 but then she just HAD to have the last one too….IMG_5316

You don’t have to spend a lot on a kids party.  Just use what you have and get crafty with dollar store finds.  The overhead garland above the dining table is actually just made up of 3 plastic tablecloths that I bought at the dollar store and then hand cut fringe on for instance.

princess in training  And the white lace hearts were leftover craft items I already had and I strung them on ribbons leftover from my wedding.

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The Princess in Training sign is just foam core board that I cut and wrote on and the two Sophia the First framed photos that sit beside it are pictures I found in a free poster album book that I picked up at Little Swappies for free.  I just made sure to find and cut pictures within the same pale pink and purple color theme.

Because I was simultaneously planning my daughter’s 2nd birthday (which was planned to be held 1 month after this party), I really really wanted to stick to a tight budget here. So I got creative.

dessert bar pink

I used pages out of that free Sophia the First poster book and created a backdrop by simply taping pages with coordinating colors on the wall.  I bought the posterboard that hangs in the middle on sale at Michaels for $5 then covered it in fabric and velcro taped the Princess tasks for certification list so it became the centerpiece of our Princess in Training snack station.princess in training

I chose to stick the stand alone decorative items that Disney gave me (the 2 small pieces below the foam core board) as wall decor instead of as table decor and placed their snack bowls right beside them on a riser that I created from scratch.

disneyside princess party

The center riser is just a diaper box covered in dollar store plastic tablecloth, tissue paper that I cut for my daughter’s first birthday, saved and re-used and extra pom pom trim -also leftover.  And the long narrow, riser in front is a bunch of Kleenex boxes glue-gunned together and wrapped.  You’d never know, right?  Both worked so well I think I’ll re-use them next month at my daughter’s 2nd birthday -just have to re-cover them in a different fabric for her color theme.DSC_2238

The “pretty in pink rice crackers” and “flower petals” are from my sponsor Happy Family, an organic food line, and the “princess pretzels”, well they are a toddler crowd pleaser.  IMG_5181

Savory snacks for the adults included truffled mac ‘n cheese bites, figs, nuts, veggie reduced fat chips, Stacy’s pita chips, purple/pink corn chips (yes I like my food to match the color theme!) and fruit, not shown here.

kids party

My friend couldn’t get over the cuteness of the miniature appetizer plates and forks.

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Mozerella cheese sticks for kids and kids at heart!IMG_5189IMG_1885I bought the purple glitter paper all on sale and used them to accent these cute cake risers (cut into a circle and saran wrapped here).  They were also used as a sparkly counter runner just to bring a little more color into the mix.  So the money I did spend was mainly on snacks and foods.  I got creative with decor and re-used things I had around the house and I think it turned out all right for being on a tight budget, don’t you?

snack station

The snacks which you can’t see up close also included:

  • healthy yogurt granola bars cut into halves and presented in cupcake liners
  • kids mini-sized yogurts perfectly coordinating in purple
  • cocounut macarons
  • prince charming cookies (with a prince emblazoned on each cookie)
  • sliced fruit

Here is the before picture of my Drink jars.

Starbucks jars

Frustratingly, this project cost me the most time.  Ever get inspired by Pinterest and then totally regret trying out that crazy idea?  Well, after I had downed a couple cases of this Starbucks mocha frappuccino stuff there really was no turning back.  Even if it did take me over a half an hour to scrub each of the bottle’s stickers off and even if I did lose layers of skin during the process, I was dead set on finishing my Pinterest project!

starbucks glasses

Thank you to Party Aww Sweet for supplying the purple and white straws!

While the little princesses were occupied and happily eating in their own royal dining area, I thought it would be fun for the grownups to get to know one another a little better with a little princess activity for ourselves.  So I dreamt up a little game of Princess truth or dare-only without the dares.  Here are some sample questions, (each mom pulled a question randomly and had to answer honestly).

This game and all the questions were made up by me so don’t laugh:

  • Princesses sometimes have to kiss a lot of frogs before finding their prince.  How many did you kiss (multiple choice with different number ranges were given)
  • Princesses own more than just one glass slipper.  How many shoes do you own?
  • Hi Beauty, Have you dated a beast  Why and tell us about it.
  • If you had a magical princess power what would it be and why?

disneyside partyKids are not the only ones who can play games at princess parties!

The party went overtime, a sure sign that the guests were having a good time and I was thrilled to see all the smiling faces and laughter.  In the end the clock struck past people’s dinner times and princesses had to rush off in their stroller carriages after receiving their official princess certificate which annointed them as an official princess. I printed these from a free online printable.  See my Pinterest board for more ideas and links to other free princess printables!

princess certificate

Here’s a couple shots of post-party Cinderella clean-up, dresses, tiaras and all.

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TIPS on making a kid’s party look more sophisticated:

  • Don’t rely on just the kiddie paper products.  Mix in elegant serverware, cake platters and risers.
  • Layer in real linens with the plastic tablecloths and napkins.
  • Feature unique hanging decor like garlands, tassel balls, coordinating ribbons, fringe..Balloons are popular with the kids but also expected.
  • Stick to your color theme and coordinate down to the very last detail.
  • Feature fresh florals – ooh fancy!

And that’s IT!  Read on to the next post where I show you how I transformed this decor into a Valentine’s backdrop and for a chance to win a supersized goody bag from this party!

 

Onto NY Fashion Week and then to furiously finish planning my daughter’s 2nd birthday!

 

 

Special thanks goes out to Disney and their associated sponsors, All, Wisk, Beyond Meat

And my event sponsors:

  • GoGo Squeez fruit squeezes for everyone
  • J and G handmade hair accessories for the prize package plus 20% off the shop for anyone entering promo code ‘princess’ and leaving a comment in this blog post.
  • Crunch Pak free Mickey ear snack packs for everyone
  • Catchick6 Creations princess potty training panties for the prize package and for the upcoming blog giveaway
  • Sweet Lil Bows  Sophia the First necklaces for everyone
  • Happy Family purple teething crackers and pink rice cakes
  • Party Aww Sweet party straws
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