Maelle is TWO

We celebrated Maelle turning two last weekend, and just like last year, the rain kept us from having our baby-pool party like we’d planned. Third time’s a charm, right?!

Her birthday fell a few days before the weekend, so I made special pancakes with sprinkles that morning to celebrate.

Later that evening, Andrew joined us for run group, and then mom flew in after her (work) trip to Greece. This shot was too good not to share!

Friday was spent prepping for Maelle’s party, and it was becoming more and more apparent that the weather was NOT going to cooperate. A 90% chance of rain with 1-2 inches was expected. No bueno. Thankfully, Andrew’s parents’ church allowed us to borrow some tents, which literally saved the party.

Mom, Maelle and I blew up balloons and while Maelle napped, mom and I assembled the balloon garland . It’s not difficult, but it is tedious. It’s hard not to jump when some of them spontaneously burst!

Maelle got her nails painted, too! It hadn’t even crossed my mind to paint her nails until I saw one of her little friends with nail polish on, and it was brilliant to strap her into her high chair. Looks like she’s getting a pedicure!

That evening, amid the party-prepping chaos and rising stress levels, I decided it would be a good idea to add three more adults to the mix for dinner!

We invited the Nyes (who would be unable to attend Maelle’s party the next day), ordered pizza and had a fun family dinner at the house. Afterward, we had Maelle open some gifts.

Saturday morning dawned bleak and wet, with hard rain and a small flood into the garage. Andrew was ready to move the party inside (a TERRIBLE idea, BTW) until I suggested using the shop-vac to suck up the water pooling on the driveway. Between that and the rain letting up, we were able to keep the water at bay.

We’d decorated the garage the evening before, and you can see the balloon garland in the back right corner. Even though it was a little stressful getting it together and hung up, I think it’s worth the trouble. It looked fantastic! I’d ordered the purple/teal/pink balloon combo, those colors (apparently) equate to a ‘mermaid’ theme, and after finding paper plates in those exact colors with mermaid tails at Dollar Tree, I decided to go with it. Mermaids it was!

This year, because the party included lunch, I decided to keep is easy with sub trays. I ordered the cake and the sandwiches from Walmart, since we’d had such a good experience with the cake last year, and mom picked it all up that morning. I added popcorn and watermelon as sides, and whipped up some gluten-free cupcakes for a friend who cannot eat wheat.

I’d been praying all week that the rain would at least lighten up from the hours of 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., and God heard me! It stopped raining and we were even able to get the bounce house out for the kids. It belongs to my parents, and they let us borrow it for the party and the rest of the summer. We’re excited to get it out again soon. It’s the perfect size for little kids and they all had a blast!

By the time I realized we hadn’t yet cut the cake, the party was almost over and the kids were still busy bouncing around! Mom fail. There was no singing, but Maelle enjoyed a piece of her mermaid cake and blue icing was EVERYWHERE. I’m pretty sure last year’s cake was pretty colorful, too…

We put her to bed shortly after 2 p.m., and as the last families were packing up to leave, the rain picked back up. It was such a blessing to have been spared a downpour during the party!

Despite the stress and work required, I really DO enjoy having parties at our house. We have a big, open garage and a beautiful patio on which we can host a crowd. The weather certainly can throw a wrench in our plans, and I’m still trying to find the right mix of food, guests and extras (like decor and games) that is fun without being too stressful on me as a host. I learn a little more at each event, and am confident one day having a party in the backyard will feel–dare I say–effortless?

Here’s hoping for SUN on the day of Maelle’s third birthday party!

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