Junior Mint Turns 2!

Seriously...my little Jr. Mint is two?  Already? 
Wasn't this just happening?

I still remember this moment like it happened an hour ago...

I still can remember what he smelled like...
And, I can still get a lump in my throat when I look at this...realizing that I could love another human being so purely and so unconditionally from the very start.

And now I get looks like this...every day...all day long...

  • He is now 36 inches, yes he is 3 feet tall at 2 years old.
  • He is 32 pounds
  • If I make him mad, or try to be the boss (God forbid!), he tells me "Go.  Mama.  Go."  I don't know whether to get mad or eat him up and giggle.
  • He loves his "Sissy" more than anything and wants to have whatever she has or do whatever she does.
  • He thinks he's 5 already.
  • He's pretty much the boss of all the grandkids on my husband's side because the rest baby him like crazy.
  • He knows his color and shapes and all his body parts.
  • He melts my heart and pushes every button on a daily basis.
This past weekend, we had his 2nd Birthday Circus at the local park by our house.  I invited all his baby school friends and all of our family.  We had about 40 people show up.  It was super fun.  The following pictures are totally not my normal stuff...all done with a point & shoot, no composition, no editing...just taken for posterity.

So, I did all the decorations myself, and either printed them off the computer, or bought them from The Dollar Tree.  I also bought all the games and prizes from The Dollar Tree of the dollar bins from Target, Michael's & Jo-Ann's.

We had a fishing game, a ball toss game, facepainting, gunny sack races, and a pinata.  The big item was a petting zoo.  Carter's Farm was amazing.  I did my research and called around, and they were the ONLY professionals that I spoke with, didn't balk at my request for liability insurance (also a requirement of the park), and were just awesome.  They came and set up a mobile fence, and had a hand sanitizing station, and had mules, goats, piglets, chickens, ducks, and bunnies.  The kids had a blast.  I only paid for an hour, and with the kids there that was just enough. 

The kids played games, in turn they got tickets just for playing and then they redeemed them at the prize table.  We had hot dogs, chips, cotton candy, cheese popcorn, carmel corn, cupcakes, tons of super sugary candy, juices, water, and good old fashioned Shasta pop in all the great flavors.  I wanted so badly to rent a popcorn and cotton candy machine to really bring home the circus vibe, but just couldn't justify it in addition to the petting zoo.  Well, I just about died when shopping at Smart & Final for all my stuff when I spied a stand with individual bags of popcorn and COTTON CANDY!!  I was so excited.  So, I bought a few varieties and put them in a tub on the Goodies table.  Everyone loved everything, so I think it was a success.
The Popcorn Bags were the kiddies loot bags...to start them off they had little bottles of bubbles, I made them mustaches on stick, stickers, and candy necklaces.  The bags were from The Dollar Tree and they came 30 to a bag.  Score.
Made the bunting from scrapbook paper, made the centerpieces, tissue paper puffs...
Tissue paper puffs...directions from Martha Stewart.  Hung with red and white baker's twine*.  Our little clown pinata hanging up in the tree.

Popcorn containers (3/$1), tissue paper, ribbons (3/$1), and giant suckers all from The Dollar Tree.  Wooden lion from Jo-Ann's.  I alternated between the lion, a giraffe, and an elephant.  I also made circus themed suckers from candy melts.  Got the melts & mold at ABC Cake

The Prize Table! 

Downloaded several circus themed fonts from dafont and made all the signs.  Tons of candy, mustaches on a stick, cupcakes, red bin full of cheese corn, carmel corn and cotton candy.  Gumball dispensers filled with red hots, lemonheads, and gumballs.

Daddy & Jr. Mint petting the mule?  Donkey?  Not sure.
Not so sure about Olivia the Pig.

Peeps hold the cutest bunny ever.  Not sure she ever stopped holding it long enough for other kids to enjoy.  Guess who wants a bunny now?

All the kidlets enjoying the zoo.
 I had so much fun planning this party, and seeing what I could do on a budget.  It was a lot of work, but so worth it. 

* Baker's Twine.  I'm about to blow the whistle on all those people selling baker's twine on Etsy and other places.  They are raping people with their prices.  $12.99 and up for 100 yards?  This is some shit!  I got my red and white baker's twine from a place called We Sell Coffee for $8.95.  And you wanna know how many damn yards I got?  3400.  Yes, that is THREE THOUSAND FOUR HUNDRED yards.  Now, I will be the first to admit, this place does not have the pastel colors, but they do have quite a selection.  Shipping does start at around $8 as well, but it's come from Jersey and it only takes 4 days.  I don't know about you, but I'd like to get as much product for my dollar as possible. 

So, now that this party is over, I'm full speed ahead with Chaps Buffalino.  I finally feel like the Holiday rush is over.  We went from New Years, straight to my hubby's birthday on the 9th, then Jr. Mint's on the 19th.  It's been complete chaos and I'm always rushing.  I'm looking forward to slowing down a bit and focuing on one thing.

Ciao for now...


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