Party preparations started back in January with Bobbi and I shopping for some supplies and pulling a late night Cricut crafting marathon. The party was originally scheduled for February 23rd but had to be postponed due to health reasons until March 23rd. Everyone is healthy now and the party was a huge success! I have so many ideas and decorations to blog about that I'm pretty sure this will be the longest blog post in the history of blog posts! So grab your favorite beverage, find a comfy spot, and keep reading....
Where to start??? I guess I'll start at the beginning. The craziness began when my SIL won a Sesame Street Cricut cartidge on an Ebay auction. You can't purchase this cartidge new from Cricut anymore so it wasn't exactly easy to track down. But, she finally scored big and the adventure began. We spent an entire Saturday making garland, cookie bean bags, and Cricut characters.
After getting the circles cut, I sewed the cookies together leaving a hole open for the rice to be inserted.
Bobbi filled the bags with rice (so technically I guess they're rice bags, not bean bags).
While I was sewing, Bobbi cut out brown felt "chocolate chips" and we used fabric glue to attach them. I am not a professional seamstress and sewing circles is hard! I think they turned out ok though.
Bobbi had the Cookie Monster head printed at about a size 11x17 at Kinkos and cut out the mouth. The letters were cut using the Cricut.
Here's an action shot of my niece playing her game. She moves so fast now I can't get a clear picture of her!
My two big kids got into the act with the cookie game, too! It's like playing "bags" to them!
After the cookies, we made this garland...
Did you know that you can sew paper on a sewing maching????? This garland was probably the easiest thing we made! Those paper pom poms were purchased at Party City (I think). There are also a few tulle pom poms that I'll get to later. First, Bobbi punched out a TON of circles. We didn't count but they're 2 inch in diameter. We didn't think to measure how many feet of garland we made either. There was quite a few feet though!
Here's a tip if you're going to sew a garland like this....position tape guides on either side of the sewing machine foot so you can keep a fairly straight line.
This also works better with two people so you can make a sort of assembly line. Bobbi would hand me circles and I would feed them continuously through the machine. It really went fairly quickly! This picture is me just starting the garland.
Here you can see how the garland is sewn together. Pretty cool, huh?
Next came the hardest part of the entire party: making the Cricut Sesame Street characters! I had never made a layered Cricut image before. Some of them are fairly easy, but some are very intricate and have a bunch of separate parts! Abby and Big Bird were probably the hardest because they had so many layers and parts! Here's a step by step of putting Abby together:
This isn't even all of the steps. There were so many parts! Her eyes alone had 3 layers not counting the black. Using tweezers is highly recommended for those tiny pieces. Another tip...there were a lot of intricate cuts on some of these characters and at first, we were having trouble with the Cricut just ripping the paper and not making a clean cut. We (well, I hate to admit it, but actually it was my brother!) finally realized that it was the type of paper we were using. Some of our card stock didn't have as smooth of a surface as the other paper did. Be sure you are using extremely smooth card stock for cutting tiny, detailed pieces.
You know how when you are up late working on a project and you're so tired that everything is funny? We got to that point and then probably worked another 2 hours! I think we made characters until about 1 a.m.!
Some of them were pretty easy, like Cookie Monster and Elmo. I think we made these about 4 or 5 inches tall. Bobbi made A LOT more on her own as you'll see later. You can buy these on Etsy if you don't have a Cricut or just don't want to spend the time making them.
All the other decorations were made by Bobbi so I can't really give tutorials on those. However, they're fairly self explanatory so I bet a smart gal (or guy!) like yourself could figure them out. :)
The walk up to the house included footprints from 3 of the most well known Sesame Street characters!
The green and yellow sign was a leftover retail display prop she got from a friend. She painted it (it originally looked like a North Pole sign), bought a wooden sign at a craft store and added the letters and number. Genius, right???
Bobbi made the door sign by cutting out the "Sesame Street" with the Cricut, painting the wooden S and 2 white, then attaching both to a yellow ribbon and hanging from a wreath hook.
The dining room table was decorated with the cute buckets, goldfish party favors, and wooden blocks (closeups to follow).
The chair decorations were made with the Cricut and attached to ribbon.
Of course we can't forget to decorate the kitchen!
OR the bathroom! I told you, she goes all out! :)
Here are some of the buckets she made for table decorations.
Here is the cake and candy table. The striped runner is just folded fabric.
The clear fish bowls were filled with various candy: Sixlets, gummy worms, and M&Ms. The vase in the back was filled with magnetic letters. Cute!
She also made dirt push pops with cake, frosting, and a gummy worm.
Bobbi's sister makes some adorable cakes! She gladly took on the challenge of creating the cupcakes for this party and did a fantastic job!
These little Goldy party favors are just adorable! You can buy the small canisters at a craft store and fill them with goldfish. The Goldy on the top was made with the Cricut of course.
I wish I had a mantel in my house! This one was fully decorated for the party. The large balloon is called a Walking Elmo. It has rollers or something on the bottom so my niece could hold his hand and he would "walk" with her through the house. I believe they purchased him at Party City.
The mantel was filled with pictures and stuffed toys of some of her favorite characters.
The garland was created with the Cricut of course and tied together with ribbon.
I don't have a tutorial on how to make these great tulle pom poms, but a quick internet search yields dozens of websites and Youtube videos. Bobbi said they weren't that difficult to make.
This was a "pin the nose on Elmo" game that I don't think we ever got around to playing. Again, the picture was printed at Kinkos on 11x17 paper.
We had some delicious food!!!!!! Italian beef, Italian chicken, pulled pork, 7 layer salad, fruit, cheesy potatoes, and so much more!
The picture holders that Elmo and Goldy are in can be found at craft stores. I know I've seen them in the wedding aisle for holding place cards or table numbers
And yes, Bobbi even managed to find Elmo juice boxes for the party. I've actually seen them at the Dollar Tree store, but I'm sure they can be found other places, too. These happen to be Apple and Eve brand.
Whew! That was a long post! Here are a few more shots of the birthday girl enjoying her very special day!
Taking Elmo for a walk.
Blowing out her 2 birthday candles!
Opening presents, everyone's favorite part of their birthday! :)
And my personal favorite, showing us her blue tongue from the Cookie Monster cupcake!
Happy birthday to the cutest niece ever!