The Saturday before Jonah's 5th birthday, we celebrated with a water slide birthday party. Having a July birthday kind of limits what you can do outside unless it involves water. So, we went all out and got a big water slide for him to enjoy with his friends.
They cake was done by Cakes By Elisa. She rescued us last year after our Publix cake mishap and I was so grateful. Then I tasted her cake and was beyond grateful. It was amazing. She has since done other cakes for me and many of my friends. I left the design totally up to her this year and she did not disappoint.
When you do an outside party, there isn't much to decorate but I still wanted a small area that looked festive. My wonderful friend Amanda helped me tons. I'm so glad she was here for many different reasons but one was her creative side.
Our photographer, Karrah, came early to take a few pictures of the decorations and the birthday boy before his guests arrived. I met her back in June when she took photos for our VBS at Stetson. She basically donated her services to us for a week. I was so impressed with that considering she isn't even a member of our church. And, she did an incredible job. She was so wonderful to the kids and adults. When I discovered she did event photography, I immediately booked her for Jonah and Micah's parties. I'm so glad I did that.
The boy's shirts were done by the talented Allison at Bellerose House. I told her my colors, emailed her the invites and she designed them for me. I was so thrilled with how they turned out. If you are on Facebook, be sure to go to that link and LIKE her page. She is currently having a contest for her first 100 likes. Make sure you get in on that.
It was so much fun having Eli and Amanda at Jonah's party. Amanda is my best friend from Vidalia and having here here for Jonah's big day was so special to me. She was there to photograph his entrance into our world on July 27, 2006 then was the photographer for his first three birthday parties in Vidalia. Since she had a 2 year old Eli to chase at the party, I never considered asking her to take pictures. I knew she would have her hands full.
|Us with our boys! Such a special picture to me.|
I made this balloon wreath to use during Birthday months at our house. I decided to use it at the party too just because I was proud of actually making something so cute. :-)
It is very rare that there is a picture of me and Dan these days. We are usually holding at least one of the kiddos. I'm so, so, so (insert 50,000 more so's) grateful for this man. He is such a gift to our family. He "gets" my desire for fun birthday parties and does all he can to make them everything I dream up in my head. He worked SO hard that morning and then went non-stop at the party and afterwards. Our little family is blessed to have him as our daddy and husband.
We decided to rent the church to host the party for a couple of reasons. First, the slide would not fit anywhere in our yard. And second, the covered walkways would provide shade for the parents sitting in the extreme heat while their kiddos had fun in the water. I had a couple of other options of places to have it but even with the expense of renting of the church and the cleanup involved afterward, it was totally worth it. (I say that, but I'm not the one who stayed to sweep, mop and clean bathrooms. Once again, that would be the hubby and a couple of sweet friends. But, in my defense, I took the three kiddos home!!!)
Making Jonah's invitation list was so interesting this year. In the past, I've always done it for him. But, this year, he is old enough to have real friends and make decisions about who to include. I got a piece of paper and let him give me the names. It was so interesting to see who he chose and in what order. His girlfriend, Ava, was #2. She got beat out by ANOTHER GIRL. We didn't tell her though. :-) We thought it was pretty funny that Mr. Reggie (Our Worship Pastor) made #3 on his list.
Because we rented the big slide and wanted to get FULL use of it, we invited siblings of his friends too. That way it would keep families together on a Saturday rather than separating them for one to come to a party and one to go an opposite direction. It was fun to have a wide range of kids.
Donna was a lifesaver to our family and came to keep Micah for the day. I wanted him to be there but knew I couldn't quite keep up with him and be hostess for the day. Besides, it was SO hot out there that I knew he couldn't hang outside the entire time. But, she rescued us once again and kept him happy, napped and loved on for the entire party.
Little Colton got to experience his very first birthday party. Too bad for him that it just so happened to be in the BLAZING heat. His mommy kept him cool inside for most of the time.
It was so fun to have so many of our special friends at his party. Jonah felt so loved and special. He still talks about his friends that were there. It was a good day with lots of people we love and care so much about.
school. But, all of the ones we invited came and he was THRILLED. He was so surprised to see them.
Pap was close by during the candles and cake serving to help me. I was so grateful for his help with getting cake out to everyone. Jonah was more than happy to show his cake off to Pap.
Don't know if you remember the little video about getting your teeth out of the way, but in case you do, then you will appreciate the picture Karrah captured of a lesson on blowing out candles. And, if you don't remember seeing the video, you MUST check out that link and watch it. It still makes me laugh 18 months later.
The next picture kind of sums up the day in my mind. My sweet little boy ran his heart out, slid tons of times, giggled and played for 3 solid hours. I loved watching him have such a great time.
Ava is Jonah's girlfriend although you can never tell it when they are together. He tells us all the time that she is his girlfriend but the moment they get around each other, he gets shy and ignores her. He is practicing now for being a typical boy. :-)
And, just because it was OUR party, a snake decided to crash the party. Jack Rodgers found it and it ended up being on of hits of the day. The kids loved seeing it. I did not. I kept my distance.
Here is Jonah with his #3 requested guest. Since then, Reggie made #1 on the list for a 3 year old party next week. He is quite the popular guy at preschool parties.
Poor Eli was WIPED out. I happened to plan the party right in the midst of his normal nap time. I told Amanda they could go to Dan's office to let him nap but she knew he would never settle down knowing all of the excitement was going on without him. He zoned out a couple of times but was a trooper.
He and Owen ended up wearing the same swim shirt. I got them confused a couple of times over the course of the day. Little cuties!
It was such a fun, wonderful, perfect day for Jonah and our family. Birthday parties are one of my most favorite days of the year. I love planning them and love seeing him enjoy them. I love the people that choose to come to celebrate his life. I love the reminder that he is God's gift to our family. I love celebrating him. Happy Birthday, sweet boy! Hope the day was as fun for you as it was for me!