Peter Rabbit Party -1yr- After Easter Savings
Carla in Dallas, Pennsylvania, USA
After seeing the partyware on the Birthday Express website, we decided on a Peter Rabbit theme for our daughter's first birthday (I believe the partyware is also available on Target's website). Although my daughter's birthday is in September, I picked her theme early, and was able to shop the Easter clearance sales and get Peter Rabbit products at great prices.
I made the invitations myself by downloading pictures of Peter Rabbit and adding my own poem Come along with Peter Rabbit, and join us in some fun, because our little (child's name), is celebrating Birthday Number One! I then added lines like Hop on over to a party at the (Last Name) Carrot Patch, etc. I printed the invitations on heavy card stock and they looked professionally done. I also printed return address labels using a picture of Peter Rabbit mailing a letter that I downloaded on the internet.
We rented a tent for the party, and decorated it with streamers and balloons coordinated to the partyware. It was easy to hang the ballons in groups along the roof of the tent by stringing the ends of the balloons through paper clips then sliding the ends of the clips into the holes on the tent supports. I ordered the Peter Rabbit helium balloons from Birthday Express, and added #1 balloons in coordinated colors from our local party store and had them around our home and inside the tent. I had found small tin buckets with Peter Rabbit on them after Easter, and filled them with jellybeans to use as centerpieces.
I wanted the party to have an English tea party feel to go with the Peter Rabbit theme, so I used terra cotta pots and watering cans for the decor also. I put all of the cutlery in terra cotta pots, put straws in small watering cans, and stacked large terra cotta saucers and small pots to create a tiered server for tea cookies. I also downloaded a picture of Peter Rabbit, enlarged it and made a sign with the picture and Our Last Name Carrot Patch which I hung in the archway of our front porch.
My husband and I cooked the food ourselves, and although we had over 50 guests, it wasn't that difficult. To stick with our tea party feel, we served baked ham, chicken tenders with dipping sauces, croissants, scalloped potatoes, and mixed vegetables. We also had a vegetable tray with dip, potato chips, pretzels, and sweet potato chips. As mentioned above, I served tea cookies, and had a bakery make rabbit-shaped sugar cookies decorated with blue coats they didn't have a lot of detail, but everyone knew they were Peter Rabbit cookies.
We ordered a birthday cake and served ice cream cups -- the ice cream cups are much easier to serve than having someone scoop out individual servings of ice cream.
As mentioned earlier, I was able to pick up Peter Rabbit items after Easter at Target and some dollar stores the treat bags included Peter Rabbit playing cards, post-it notes, and gel pens. I added small Peter Rabbit books for the youngest guests, and also ordered items from Oriental Trading including gummi carrots, carrot pops, and sidewalk chalk. I filled in the bags with mini Hershey bars and Hershey Kisses.
I used pale yellow paper bags, tied each bag with ribbon, and made nametags using address labels with pictures of Peter Rabbit on them. We tried to have our activities fit our theme as well, so we had a bean bag toss, but used terra cotta pots and watering cans instead of a board.
We had a First Birthday pinata, which was a big number 1 with a heart (I couldn't find a Peter Rabbit pinata anywhere), we played limbo and had a carrot hunt. The carrot hunt was set up in our side yard, which had a sign that said Mr. McGregor's Garden. I purchased plastic hollow carrots on Easter clearance (they are like plastic eggs, except they're shaped like carrots) and filled them with candy.
Then as my husband read the children Peter Rabbit, I hid them in our yard. We then told the children that carrots were hidden in Mr. McGregor's garden and they had to find them. Kids love Easter Egg Hunts, so this activity went over very well. It took advance planning, but the party went perfectly.