And the Second Birthday Theme Will Be…

Yep, we’re going kind of classic and traditional on this one. (And that greenish is totally supposed to be blue. Zoinks.)

I pondered several generic ideas (zoo, barnyard, “twinkle, twinkle little star” — not with animals present on those first two, though…I’m no Kate Gosselin) and a handful of more obvious “kidcentric” character themes he’s into (Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, Mo Willems, Sesame Street). It was a total tie between Sesame Street and “ducks,” and I’m not gonna lie — it was a tough decision.

I’m not too surprised, either. They’re both totally Hadley’s jam right now.

We’re not huge “buyer of trademarked stuff” people, but he’s got a Sesame Street fold-out couch that he uses to watch ANY of “his” shows (a sweet gift), a handful of hand-held character toys (let’s call them pre-action figure action figures…of cute and cuddly Muppets), and, of course, his plush dolls of Bert ‘n Ernie, Cookie Monster, Grover, The Count, Big Bird…and I’m a horrible Mommy because I’m forgetting if I left anyone out. *scratches head*

Notice we don’t have Elmo (he likes Elmo, but he’s not in LOVE with Elmo…ya get me?), or Zoe, or Abby Cadabby, or any of the newer breed of Sesame Street monsters. Let’s just say that if we’re going to show him an episode on Netflix and he demands requests a particular character, it’s usually “hee hee” (the noise Ernie makes when he laughs, you know the one) or “la la la” (Big Bird) or “ah aaaahhh” (The Count). He also does a “bam bam bam” motion (for Oscar) and a “nom nom nom” hand to mouth motion (for Cookie Monster). Um, he’s also calling lots of things “Bob” lately. That may or may not be related. Bob.

But, the word “duck” comes out of his mouth about 50+ times a day lately. I bring home duck books (fiction and non-fiction) from school. He quacks. He carries rubber duckies around whenever the thought occurs to him. He didn’t want to leave the flower shop we visited just before Easter that has an awesome annual display of a dozen happy, splashing baby ducks.

Kid’s obsessed.

And it’s just so sweet.

After some more conversation, Dave and I realized that next year, he’ll probably still be into Sesame Street. If that’s the case (hopefully it is), we can do a Sesame theme next year, or something else he’s super into. But, he isn’t always going to be into such an endearing little thing like duckies. Plus, it was a huge theme for his baby shower, so it makes this mama a tad sentimental to think about the evolution from shower to second *sniff, sniff* birthday.

Duckies, it is. Plus, Hadley agreed to it when we asked him to pick between the two. That clinched the deal. Not that he in any way knew what he was really voting on.

So, what’s this theme about? The invite is just a quick mock-up (sans the place or RSVP info…not even sure of the time yet, really), but can you really have a two-year-old’s duck party without the ubiquitous rubber ducky? Didn’t think so.

Side note: If we do Sesame Street next year, you know I’m repurposing rubber duckies for an Ernie connection. #usewhatyouvegot

Speaking of reusing, most of the stuff I made last year (cake topper, big poufs, even utensils and plates), I’m using this year…if the tissue paper poufs have held up being squished in a bag all year. (Ahem.) 

Last year’s party was mostly a colored theme (orange, yellow, blue, green), which all totally work with duckies.

The food will most likely be simple (if you really know me, you’re laughing at the use of that word — last year was SUPPOSED to be simple) – fruits and veggies with dip on ice, either pizza or BBQ-type stuff, pretzels/chips, and dessert. There is much pinning to be done, but we’ll either do a nice big cake with yellow frosting or cupcakes (mini duck toppers, anyone?) and a small cake for monkey to dive into. Why do I think he’ll dive a bit more this year?

Decor, well, yeah. Ducks. But to keep it cohesive with the mix of last year’s colors, blue and yellow tablecloths (blue = water) should do the trick. As the invitation implies, I hope to make some buntings to drape, either across the seating area or behind the food table…or both. Maybe some blue or yellow streamers. En masse, they can pack a punch. And I’m sure I’ll probably make a couple of ducky posters or a “year in pictures” poster to hang.

I’ve seen some cute ideas for the food area, like rafia (hay) as fillers, but the thing I’ve noticed most is that the thing that makes a table is its organization. Rows, my dears. Rows. Oh, and cute signage. Preferably on sticks. (“Quackers”, anyone?)

Beverages can be chilled in a baby pool or galvanized tub (whatever is handy) and an additional small tub can be used as a fun game: everyone picks a duck out and the ones with an “H” (or whatever) marked on the bottom wins a prize.

Oh, and since these shindigs tend to be adult-centric for now (he has one best friend/cousin about a year older; then two teenaged cousins who are incredible…just way older; otherwise, friends in far-off places), those gifts will be, like, plants or candles or something. We’ll see. 

I’d do a duck piñata, but like I said, it’s gonna be mostly adults. (Although, the image of our moms whacking away blindly is kind of awesome.) We keep things low-key at our events since our friends and family are pretty good at mingling and finding their own fun. One day when more kids are involved, they’ll need more fun/structure (structure does not equal zero fun, I promise…says the boring librarian ;-)), so we’ll do more games/activities at that point.

For now, just digging out the sidewalk chalk and balls for catch will be just fine, I think.

If you want to see what else I’ve got up my sleeve, check back on my Pinterest board for Hadley’s birthday. (There are also some ideas I picked last year that I never used, which may help me in my future parties, too.) Check back often; I’m sure it’ll be growing a ton.

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