If you know me fairly well, it’s no secret that I am a planner through and through. I love putting together parties and usually start brainstorming for one right after wrapping up the previous one! For Landon’s third birthday, I had an elaborate plan to do an “Around the World” party that would feature seven different stations for the seven different continents with each one unique to the culture or terrain of that area. Well, after COVID hit (and seemingly never went away), I quickly realized that a party of that size wouldn’t be possible this year. After all, it was big undertaking and I wanted to make sure all of his friends got to enjoy it when it pulled it off… hopefully next year!
But for this year, I put together something smaller. As a first time parent, I’m not sure if it’s just this age or if kids are like this forever, but his tastes are constantly changing. One day Frozen is the best thing ever and week later, it will be something totally different. So I knew if I planned a party around something he loved, that it may be out the window by the time October rolled around. I went “neutral” and decided to plan a train party — something that is always in style with little boys!
I tried my best to strike a good balance of not going too overboard (since it was just a very small group!) but making the day still really special! For food, I tried to create the atmosphere of a cafe at a train station with all grab and go items — sandwiches, chips, and fruit cups! I love the chalkboard sign my mom designed — from scratch — as the backdrop!
For the dessert table, I kept it fairly simple with just a 3D train cake and a pretzel bar. We did both savory and sweet pretzels with a ton of different topping so everyone could create them to their liking! I thought sweet pretzels would be the favorite but it turns out adults love salty!
For our drink station, I made a Fueling Station complete with Arnold Palmer from the best ever, Chik-fil-a.
I didn’t do too many other crazy setups since this was a small event.One thing I was pretty proud of was the 3D train made completely out of cardboard boxes. I had a ton of boxes leftover after doing a DIY mailbox costume for Halloween that year and thought it would be fun to create this for the party! It was actually super easy and my mom and I threw it together in just a few hours while Landon napped.
And, of course, a few of our sweet birthday boy in his adorable train sweater!
Hoping that next year will finally bring the Around the World party to life, but if not, it’s good to know smaller events like these can still be a blast!