This year, for Reagan's 4th birthday, I figured I'd take advantage of one last year where she wasn't asking for a certain kind of party, with certain friends - she was just so darn excited for her birthday, she didn't even think to ask about her actual party. Besides, stupid allergies have taken over my life for the past month and a half, so I was game for playing it relatively low-key.
Besides from cleaning the house (which I admit, stressed me out a ton, since I had to wait until the last minute with these 3 rugrats around here - us moms know how quickly our hard work gets undone when it comes to cleaning, am I right?), this was SUCH a stress-free party. I invited just our immediate family - both my husband and I are one of five kids, so with parents, siblings, nieces and nephews, that was plenty. I did invite my closest aunt and her gang, because, well, we're so close;). But other than that, just the immediates.
Then the food. Oh my word, couldn't have been simpler. I put out a platter of cheese, crackers, grapes, and apple slices, and my aunt brought tortilla chips and fresh salsa. DONE. I always tend to put out too much in the way of appetizers, then we're all stuffed, so this was great. And zero cooking. Again, no stress whatsoever!
|the fam hanging out over munchies|
Served some Caesar salad bags (you know, those kits you can throw together?) in my ginormous wooden salad bowl and we had our dinner. No oven, no stressing over timing when all the side dishes would be ready, no nothing. LOVE IT.
As far as cake, I made the cake the night before, iced it that morning and we were good to go. My mom made her famous cupcakes in case we started running low on cake. Always delegate, people! I've hosted parties where I insisted on doing it all, and you know what? It's exhausting. If people want to help, then by all means, LET THEM HELP!
And for the party decorations, earlier that week we went to the Dollar Tree and picked up some cute butterfly hanging things, a Happy Birthday banner, and party plates, napkins, cups, etc. to match.
I placed all the utensils, napkins, plates, etc on the buffet table, and people grabbed their stuff and headed over to the pizza and salad, and sat wherever. Easy. Peasy. Just had to put out a couple folding chairs in case we were short, but people sat here there and everywhere.
When the last of the guests had left, I was shocked at how NOT exhausted I was. Usually I have that relief; that combination of happy that it went well/so happy it's over with/so incredibly exhausted feeling. But not this time. It was 100% enjoyable for me, since I wasn't stressing over a darn thing except hanging out with our families and celebrating my girl. And the clean-up consisted of throwing away some paper plates and cups. We were done in 15 minutes!
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