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For his big two year birthday party, I couldn’t decide what I wanted to do. Should we have a huge, blow-out party at the house, inviting everyone we know? Should we do something at a bounce-house or kid museum? How many kids should we invite? 5, 10, 20?!
As Good Papa patiently tried his best to talk me down from throwing a 100 person party for a two year old, I finally came to a realization.
Why am I stressing out about a kid’s party?
Pinterest is great and all, but sometimes it makes you feel that a crazy, off the wall party, every year, for every child is a requirement. It’s just too much!
So, we decided to throw W something more low-key. It turned out great, and, most importantly, W had a blast.
Car-Themed Party for Toddlers
Summer can be a hectic season for a birthday party with all the vacations, weddings and other events going on. Since I stay at home, I thought a weekday playdate would be a lot easier. I’m always looking for something to fill the endless afternoons anyway.
We decided a backyard party with a few water games would be perfect on a hot, summer afternoon. Fortunately, the weather turned out great. It was a hot one, but by 4:00 pm the yard was mostly covered in shade.
It was no question what the theme of W’s party would be this year. I’m not sure what it is with boys and cars, but they sure love them! With the car theme in mind, I hit up the local party store and Amazon for some cheap, yet festive party decorations.
Since I found a cute checkered flag banner and checkerboard table cloths, I went with primary colors for the utensils and straws. Plastic isn’t great for the environment, but it sure makes for easy clean-up. I added some streamers, a few orange plastic traffic cones and little cars here and there to finish it off. and little cars here and there to finish it off.
It took no time at all to pull the room together and I had the best helpers in the Good Papa and Uncle Dew (what W affectionately calls his Uncle Andrew). A little road-way runner was too perfect not to pass up!
It was a blast thinking of fun water games for the toddlers to play in the yard. Can you tell I miss teaching just a bit? I decided on games that were simple, yet entertaining, and would require almost no work for me to put together. Can you tell this pregnant lady is getting a little tired?
- Car wash: This game was the simplest, but the biggest hit! W received a Little Tikes truck from his grandparents this past holiday season. I placed a basket with some sponges and a bucket of water and a basket filled with squirt bottles and spray bottles nearby. Voila! Here’s your own little car wash. from his grandparents this past holiday season. I placed a basket with some sponges and a bucket of water and a basket filled with squirt bottles and spray bottles nearby. Voila! Here’s your own little car wash.
- Speedway: I don’t know about you, but I have too many cardboard boxes. It’s much easier to order big items online than have to lug them home with a toddler in tow. So, I made use of all that cardboard, cut two rectangles, added some black duct tape,yellow decorative tape, and made an easy car ramp. I set it up next to one of our stone ledges and the kids had a great time racing the cars down.
- Bubbles: Every kid’s party needs bubbles! I love this bubble machine. All you do is dump in a bit of bubble mix and turn it on. I purchased mine at Target, but you can find something like it most anywhere. What kid doesn’t enjoy bubbles?
- Photo Booth: I’ve been seeing these adorable photo booths all over pinterest and I could not resist making one of our own. Plus, I still had quite a bit of cardboard left over (Does anyone need any?). I found this too-cute car photo booth over at Vicky Barone’s blog. All you need is cardboard, duct tape, wooden dowels and round head fasteners so the kids can have fun spinning the wheel!
so the kids can have fun spinning the wheel!
- For those of you wondering how much work this photo booth requires, I was able to get this done with W playing at my feet. I just passed him the other half of the large piece of cardboard, gave him a bunch of crayons and he went to town.
- Sprinkler: This little fire hydrant is tiny, yet powerful. I was impressed with how far the water shot out.
- Blow-up pool: I think W was most excited for the blow-up pool because he doesn’t typically see it in our backyard. He loved it so much he decided to jump in after we changed him into his dry clothes. To keep with the car theme, I picked up some blow-up traffic signs. .
- We already had a water table and a small jungle gym in our yard, so the toddlers were able to play with those as well.
The food was beyond easy. We just ordered a bunch of pizzas. I also put out some fruit, veggies and snack items like mini chocolate donuts (because they look like tires).
My super talented mother-in-law made W’s car cake for the party. It was so pretty I almost didn’t want to cut it up and eat it (emphasis on the almost). Thankfully, we cut right into it because it was delicious! W was beyond excited for his car cake. He almost stuck his entire face right in when we put it in front of him.
I accidentally ordered way too many small, silver gift bags back when I was doing some project while teaching, and I’ve been slowly using those bags ever since. I made a little thank you decal in Picmonkey and popped it onto the bag. I added a small snack, the cutest car-shaped crayons, a car notepad and a tiny wind-up car.
We had such a great time at our car-themed party! I’m fairly certain all the kids had fun too. What theme did you go with for your two-year-old’s party?
Your party looks AMAZING!!!!
So glad you liked our car photo booth! Thanks so much for sharing!
Vicky Barone recently posted…Road Trip Essentials for Kids
That’s not low key, that’s FREAKING AWESOME! Great job! You had sooooo many cute touches! Totally sharing and pinning and stumbling. Beautiful job!
Kristen recently posted…No Glam Squad at the Hospital For Me
Great party! The car wash idea was amazing…and so simple! The cake was perfect and delicious.
I love all of your ideas. I’m planning Lucas birthday party and i will use some of them. I’m glad W had a wonderful time!!! Thanks a lot for your blog…I enjoy it a lot reading it.
This turned out amazing!! I love all the little details.. pinning now!
Lauren recently posted…Yves Saint Laurent Touche Eclat- Influenster VOXBOX Review
Hahahahhaha!!! I think our definition of “low-key” is quite different. I threw a “low-key” party for my kids. It was so chill (almost embarrassing), that I didn’t even write a post about it. Your car party looks incredible! My son would have loved it-he is big into cars right now!! I am pinning this for the next party!!
Tarynn Playle recently posted…Chocolate Pretzels
Love it! The cake is amazing and the decorations are so cute. You did a great job.
Melissa recently posted…How to Break your Kids’ Bad Habits
This is AMAZING! My little guy was sitting on my lap while I was reading this and I don’t think I have ever seen him so excited for a party idea. Gonna try out the speed-way this weekend. Thanks for the inspiration – LOVE IT!
Stephanie recently posted…Painting with Water Beads!
Absolutely LOVED this idea and theme, and you executed it beautifully. How fun is this for a two year old boy! I also have a two year old and will be using these ideas for a three year old party. Thanks for posting. Great pictures!
This is a great article. Very insightful. Thanks for the post.