Around the time that Noah really started "understanding" books we read, he was hooked on one book in particular. "Brown Bear Brown Bear What do you See?" It has been his all time favorite for some time now. So.... what better idea than to base his third birthday on his favorite book?!
And, thus, the "Brown Bear" party was created!
So much fun to "create" a party that really isn't "out there" on the party circuit. I love a challenge!
An idea I had months ago really started the whole process. I knew I wanted a book or accordion style invite with wording mimicking the book itself. I contacted someone I knew might also feel up to a challenge, Donna Baxman of MonkeyMooMoo. She has helped me many times with previous invites. Lucky for me, she agreed to help!
Voila, the invite!
The day I received these in the mailed I literally jumped with excitement! It's the little things as a mom, you know?!
Then the planning began! Guest list, cake, cupcakes, snacks, favors, balloons, colored straws, a craft activity, and so on. One of my other favorite details of the party were the cupcakes. I found an Etsy vendor, the 'Lil Details that I felt could do a wonderful job creating three dimensional fondant cupcake toppers to represent each animal in the book. Jennifer was super easy to work with and although she wasn't even familiar with the book, she did an amazing job with each animal! The detail on each of these little fondant cuties was perfect. My favorite one ended up being the black sheep. It had actual "twirly" shaped "wool" on it! Super cute!
Then came the cake planning... my personal fav! I found a cake on Pinterest and I knew I wanted to use it for this party. Since the cupcakes would have each animal on them, I did not want the cake to have animals too. This cake was the perfect design to balance out the busy cupcakes and represent the colors in the book, ie... brown bear, red bird, purple horse, etc. I contacted Jackie Treschl, a local cake designer I have used numerous times in the past, and she worked her magic! And, the "3" was made out of chocolate just for the birthday boy! Genius!
A few more snacks arranged in coordinating colored single serve cups - green frogs, gold fish, and brown bears!
The craft activity! Noah's older brother read "Brown Bear" to all of the kids outside. Just to refresh their memory! Then, I had printed out each animal on cardstock. I collected different "things" they could use to decorate the animal, like red feathers for the red bird and black pom pom balls for the black sheep. The idea was to have each child decorate each animal and create their very own handmade version of the book. I have to say, there are nine animals in the book, and when dealing with little ones, they are easily tempted by the sand box and playset nearby. So, some of them only did a couple of animals. But, as long as they had fun, it did not matter! I tied the pages with ribbon when finished so they could take them home after the party.
And, finally, party time! Time for singing to the birthday boy, blowing out candles, and enjoying the goodies and friends! We gave Noah his choice of a cupcake to actually blow candles out with. (He had been a little sick a few days before his party and we did not want to take any chances with our friends!)
The party favors! Wanted something a bit different to "hold" the favors. So, I found these little berry baskets on Etsy and decided to try them. They worked out perfect for an alternative to the traditional goodie bag. Hot glued a little brown ribbon along the top and filled it with a green frog (squeaky bath toy), a yellow duck (another squeaky bath toy) and Teddy graham (brown bears) snacks in a cello bag tied with my other favorite detail of the day. The little thank you tags that Donna did. LOVED what she put on them!
Happy 3rd Birthday my little Noah! We love you very much!!!!!!!!