We celebrated small one’s birthday on Saturday. 
I’m new to this birthday thing but thanks to good firends and Pinterest I knew that I needed a theme.
I needed a theme that was going to be easy to pull off at the end of a busy work week, be two year old friendly and be something that she actually likes.
Now, I flirted with the idea, due to her burgeoning interest in “Dora” (How did that happen?  I haven’t even shown her Dora!) of doing “The Dora Party”. 
Since I have no interest in watching countless episodes of said character I nixed that idea tout suite!
Instead, I went with everything polka dotted.  Why?  Because she’s obsessed with the moon and I thought that a solar system party was a bit much for a two year old and she considers anything circular “the moon”.
My plan was to have the party between 4-6 (it actually went from 4-11 but who’s to stop a good time?) and have substantial enough snacks to serve as dinner.
By having it late in the day I also thought I would be able to have small one take a nap and give me time to set-up (I did the majority of it the night before), that day, of course, she did not nap.
Instead my rather elegant cupcakes (use this recipe, small one and I made a X5 batch the night before) that I was going to pipe had little hands helping me decorate. 
You know. 
I liked them better. 
This was, after all, her party.
 Onto the trusty cake stand they go.
 Table almost ready.  I could not find a fun dotted tablecloth so I bought a sheet set that I needed for small one’s bed anyway.  Bowls are out. Round mirrors that are meant for the downstair’s playroom are on the table, dotted cloth napkins are ready…
 and onto the loot bags.  I am not a loot bag fan.  I really don’t like buying things that are meant to throw away so I’ve been picking loot bag items up when I see them.  I’ve got some stamps, some very cute (durable jewelry), bubbles in a reusuable container, wooden toys that are a lace-up game…and all were found in various clearance bins at stores that I normally shop at.  In total they each cost me less than three dollars.
 More dots on the tissue paper and dotted ribbon to finish.
Now, what I really wanted to do is make giant pompoms from even more tissue. I’ve seen all over Pinterest BUT, no nap equals no pompoms.  We’ll keep that idea for an outdoor party in summertime.
And here’s the finished table.  Now, here is a disclaimer.  The rest of the photos are going to be great.  I didn’t take them.  My wonderful friend Michelle did (see her blog on my sidebar) BUT these are her version of snaps and using a flash.  Her specialty is stunning, natural light photos. 
 In the kitchen: homemade sliders (round) and buns, with pasta salad and a beverage or two or three for the adults.
 Dip in individual cups and veg standing to attention.
All the kiddos in the basement led by my amazing Godkids in a round of fingerpainting.  I made salt dough ornaments with ‘M’ stamped in them to be painted and taken home by all.  Most of the adults even joined in.  Yay!  Playroom!

 Daddy helped out.
 After working-up an appetite, the kiddo table was put to good use.
 A nest was made to cuddle in while watching “Elmo in Grouchland”.
 Then came the cake.
 You see how talented Michelle is?  I actually love this photo and I’m in it.  Miracle!
Presents happened, a costume change was called for since Auntie Michelle got her such an adorable outfit.
 and Granddad phoned from Florida to join in and say hello.
My tips:
1)  Pick something realistic.
2)  It doesn’t have to be perfect, the kiddo’s will have a blast.
3)  Have your dishwasher empty when guests arrive.  At the end of this fab night I turned mine on and the house was basically clean again.
4)  Invite only people who are not remotely interested in perfection.
5)  Shop WAY in advance and make a list of what you have so you don’t over buy.
6)  Have everything ready to go ahead of time so that you can actually have fun.
7)  Don’t forget about naps.  Ours didn’t happen BUT at least we tried.