Welcome to Caroline’s Nutcracker Birthday Party! As always, this will be super long and picture heavy.
This is Caroline’s 5th birthday, which means it’s her last big everyone is invited party before we switch to family/special day/maybe a couple friends/sleepover parties. I can’t say she’s quite accepted that fact, since she told me today she wants an ice skating party next year, but I’m pretty happy I only have one kid to plan huge parties for (at least for the foreseeable future). I really do love throwing these huge birthday events but fall is my busy season for photography so doing a birthday on top of that is a tiny bit overwhelming.
With a December birthday and a daughter who has been in ballet for several years already, I’ve been dreaming of a Nutcracker Birthday party for a while. For those who haven’t been reading my blog for 5+ years, her previous themes were: Winter Sparkle Snowflake, Woodland Fairy, Princess and Mermaid. They were all really fun, but this year was the best.
I’m going to put in a page break after a couple of pictures because I just looked and I have 177 edited photos from the party and I’m going to have a hard time cutting that down to an acceptable number. I’ll round up sources at the end and link recipes in the food section, although a lot of the recipes are stuff I’ve linked for every party since her first (because I cannot have a party without thumbprint cookies).
Despite the fact that it is December in Connecticut, the weather was in the mid-60’s for her party. I would have done a lot more outside decorating if I had known the kids were going to spend ALL DAY in the yard or on the porch, but at least I got lights on the house and a couple of Nutcrackers for the planter boxes. I found those at Lowe’s. The sled and wreath are just my standard Christmas decor. It’s really nice that the first act of The Nutcracker is just a Christmas party, so all my decorations were already on theme.
I made the wreath using Jill’s tulle wreath tutorial. Super easy and super cute, although glitter tulle is the fabric of the devil.
PINK five balloon from Party City.
Candy cane garland from Oriental Trading, who was kind enough to give me a party budget and send me some of my decor for free because they’re awesome and I am a very, very loyal customer.
Little house from Ikea, circa 2012
Christmas card holder made by my very talented husband. You can see a bunch of Caroline’s invites I used to fill it in until it gets full of holiday cards from friends. Those invites were done by the AMAZING Becca of Jumping Jax Designs. I cannot recommend her more highly – she is creative, talented and so fun. She turned my very vague ideas (“I’m doing sort of all the colors, but girly? And a little vintage? But not too cartoony, still classy. But good for a 5 year old?”) into the CUTEST invitations. The ballerina in the middle has red hair and glasses. I mean.