Our sweet little Brynlee Bee turned three last week and we had so much fun celebrating with family and friends. We couldn’t be more proud of the beautiful, kind, smart and spunky little lady that she is becoming and have loved watching her learn and grow this past year.
Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I go a little overboard when it comes to planning and throwing parties. I really can’t help it, I LOVE all that goes into planning a party and decorating for it! The one thing I don’t love is the stress that sometimes accompanies it. The past two years I’ve completely stressed myself out over Brynlee’s parties to the point where it really wasn’t that fun for me. So this year I promised myself I absolutely, under no circumstances, would let myself get that stressed by a 3 year old’s birthday party, and you know what? I managed to achieve it! I had so much fun making the decorations and setting everything up, but the big difference this year is that I wasn’t aiming for perfection. If I didn’t finish something, or simply didn’t get to it, oh well. If something didn’t turn out the way I’d hoped, that was okay too. And a big part is that I outsourced the main dish and kept the food pretty simple. I ordered sandwich trays from Costco that came with the condiments. Made frozen chicken nuggets for the kids that I threw in the oven 20 minutes before the party started and put together baked mac and cheese the day before that just needed to go into the over before the chicken nuggets. I also enlisted help from my family, who came a couple hours before the party started and I immediately doled out a list of tasks that needed to be done and they were all more than happy to help!
I decorated for the party the night before, after Brynlee went to bed. I tried to do a little before she went down, but that was a disaster! She was so excited by all the My Little Pony decorations and wanted to touch (read: pull) at everything. Needless to say, things went much quicker after she was asleep. Plus she was super excited to wake up and find our downstairs completely transformed into everything My Little Pony.
I went ahead a made most of the decorations this year too. I bought a pack of rainbow colored paper at Joann’s and cut out star shapes and white clouds with my Cricut, then headed to my sewing machine and whipped up tons of garlands in no time at all.
By far my favorite (and now only) way to make garlands is on my sewing machine, so quick and easy!
I found the rainbow colored paper fans at Hobby Lobby, then I attached ponies from this My Little Pony Birthday printable set I bought from Etsy. I printed a bunch of them out and cut them out to use as decor throughout the party. The little sign at the top, right above the 3 says “Our Little Brynlee” in the My Little Pony font also came with the printable set and was such a cute, personalized addition to Brynlee’s party.
Next to the table I set up a drink station. I like to set up different stations away from each other, the main food was in the kitchen and desserts were in a separate part as well. So that no one area gets too congested. We had around 30 people at our house so it was really important to make sure the flow of traffic ran smoothly.
On of the items that I included on the dessert table was a repeat from last year. Everyone raved about this “party popcorn” and once again we didn’t have any left over. All I did was pop a bunch of popcorn the day before, spread it out on backing sheets, drizzled melted white chocolate all over it and add rainbow color sprinkles. Then I wrapped it in plastic wrap until the party. Oh and I found those cute rainbow cups at the Dollar Store!! I couldn’t believe my luck in finding them, they are the perfect size for this treat!
I also set up a little kids area, it worked out so well last year and did again this year too. Landon’s grandpa made these adorable wood picnic benches and I love them so much!!! Brynlee does all her arts and crafts on hers and uses it constantly. We borrowed my sister in law’s too so we would have enough seating for all the kids. I set out crayons, My Little Pony coloring sheets and their party favors for the kids to play with.
Last but not least, the morning of the party I whipped up these cute rainbow cupcakes using Skip to my Lou’s tutorial. I made the cupcakes the day before, so they just needed to be frosted. It was a little time consuming but super easy to do! I got all of the colored sanding sugar and candy flower tops at Joann’s, using a bunch of 50% coupons. I really couldn’t have been happier with the way they turned out and everyone absolutely loved them!
I set them all out on the dessert table (our sofa console) on a cupcake stand I got at Target years ago. I also made cute pony themed signs for all the food. Here are Rainbow Dash’s Sonic Rainboom Cupcakes, we had Pinkie Pie’s Pinkalicious Party Popcorn, The Cutie Mark Crusader’s Clubhouse Sandwiches, Twilight Sparkle’s Magical Mac and Cheese, Rarity’s Delectable Rainbow (watermelon, cantaloupe, pineapple, honeydew, blueberries and purple grapes arranged in a rainbow with whipped cream dip for the cloud), Spike’s Spicy Chips and Dip (chips, salsa and guac), Apple Jack’s Sweet Apple Acres Apple Juice and Apple Sauce and Fluttershy’s “lil critters” Nugget Nibbles. It was cute and people got a kick out of the names.
The birthday girl just woke up the day of the party and was so excited it was finally here. Every day for weeks, leading up to it, she would ask if it was her birthday yet. She had so much fun!
Even though it was pretty hot, around 110* the day of her party, we had this blow up water slide and a bounce house that was conveniently shaded by our neighbors tree all day, for the kids to play on and they loved it. The heat definitely didn’t bother them and we had misters going and plenty of shade for the adults that braved the outdoor weather.
Pretty much the only way we managed to get the kids back inside was to bribe them with cupcakes! I got Brynlee’s candle from Sweet Pea Candles on Etsy. I’ve purchase one every year from her and they are always incredible. Brynlee was so excited to see her Rainbow Dash candle!
She devoured her cupcake, her previous birthdays she was a little skeptical of cake, but I guess in this last year she has really found a love of cake (who can blame her)! As for the ice cream, I forgot to get a picture, but I pre-scooped it out into little cups I found in the Target dollar bins the morning of, then put the cups on a tray and put them back in the freezer until it was time and guys, this was a serious game changer! I wont ever not pre-scoop again! It made it so easy for everyone to grab an ice cream if they wanted one and mess free for all the kiddos since it was in a cup and not on a plate. Plus there wasn’t one person stuck at the tub of ice cream for an insurmountable amount of time dishing it out for everyone. Definitely the way to go!
Happy Happy Birthday, our sweet Brynlee Bee! How is it possible that it has already been three whole years since you made us parents. We love you so much and are so honored to be your parents. It has been truly amazing watching you and all that you have accomplished this past year.
You started dance, and while at first it was a little rocky, once you got used to it you excelled and loved going each week. You just had your first recital and there couldn’t have been two prouder parents than your daddy and I sitting there, watching how brave you were to get up on the big stage, in front of all those people, with lights in your eyes and do your dance. You were so proud of yourself and so excited to have everyone there. That will be a memory that stays with us for a lifetime.
You also started a pre- preschool class at the library this year and have truly blossomed from going there. You are always so excited to show and tell me what you learned or made that day. You love going to class each week and have made some new friends.
It’s been so fun to see you step outside of your comfort zone and make friends on your own and later hearing you talk about what you did with them or ask when you will see them again. You have such a kind and happy heart and are learning to flourish in social environments. It was just me and you most days for so long and it makes my heart happy seeing you bloom.
You talk so much now! And it is so fun!!!! Your vocabulary has come so far this year and we can hold actual conversations. I love knowing what you are thinking and that you are able to communicate with us so well now.
Pretend play, oh how fun it is to watch your imagination at work! We hope that your imagination continues to grow and you never lose that spark. The things you come up with are constantly amazing us and often teaches us that you are constantly learning, observing and soaking everything up, even when we may think you’re not paying attention.
You are so determined! And while at times that makes things difficult for all of us, it will serve you so well as you grow. It is hilarious how insistent you are about some things, like the exact placement of where one of us is sitting or standing while we play and that even though these two items are the exact same, “this one” is the one that is mine and the other is yours and we cannot mix them up.
Currently you are loving Mickey Mouse (and friends), I am pretty sure that is a love that will never waiver. My Little Pony, Paw Patrol, Doc McStuffins (although I think it is probably safe to just say anything Disney) and Dora. You’re favorite foods are spaghetti, hummus and trees (broccoli), berries (preferable frozen), peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and yogurt parfaits. You love to do anything outside, which is kind of difficult since it is an average of around 110* these days, but we cant wait for the cooler weather to come in a couple of months so we can get back outside and you can ride your new tricycle. You love to dance and sing and often put on shows for us and call yourself Popstar Brynlee (after the Popstar Minnie episode of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse). You are extremely silly and brighten our day every day! You love to swim! And play and you are fearless!!! Which has us constantly on edge. You have a deep love for animals, all animals and want to take care of them all. You love to bake with mama and are getting pretty good at it! I will always cherish the time we spend in the kitchen. You love to put on mama’s high heels and stumble around the house in them and its not uncommon for me to find 5-6 pairs scattered around the house after your fashion show. You LOVE going to school and are so excited to start preschool in a couple of weeks. You are so creative and would paint and do arts and crafts all day every day!
You are everything we every hoped for and we are so, so proud of you! The joy of watching you grow up has our hearts bursting at the seams. Words simply cannot express our love for you and we are so blessed to have you as our daughter.
Happy 3rd Birthday our sweet girl, may all your dreams come true!
We love you,
Mama and Daddy