When I found out I was giving birth less than a month before Mazzy's third birthday, I figured we would skip the festivites this year. I didn't see how I could possibly pull off a birthday party while taking care of a newborn. Mazzy wouldn't notice, right?
Riiiight... as soon as we started fielding birthday invitations from her classmates and friends, the questions started.
"When is MY birthday?"
"Am I going to have a party???"
"Of course you are, sweetie!"
Oops. Who just said that? Damn, I think it was ME.
Then it was Mike's turn to weigh in.
"Let's just have Mazzy's closest friends."
"And we'll have it at home."
Then I made the shortlist of Mazzy's friends. Turns out, once you account for friends, their parents, and family, it comes out to a SHIT TON of people.
I decided to put off any decision making. After all, I had a newborn to keep alive. Flash forward to a week and a half ago. I'm talking to my new friend Seri (aka Little Miss Party) and she says...
"You know, if you want to throw Mazzy a birthday party, I would totally do it for you."
"No, that's crazy."
"Let me send you a mood board with some ideas and then you can make a decision."
"Did you say— MOOD BOARD??? OKAY!!!!!!"
I'm a sucker for a good mood board.
Seri, a NYC party planner who specializes in throwing kids' parties in small spaces, proceeded to send me the most adorable mood board ever. Her idea was to create "Mazzy's Milk Bar" with a variety of cookies and treats. She suggested having the party from 2pm-4pm so people wouldn't expect lunch. Then she threw out the idea of having a puppet show to keep the kids entertained and seated.
"That all sounds brilliant! But can you really pull that off in less than two weeks?"
"Yep. Just give me the go-ahead and you won't have to do a thing."
Did I tell you how awesome it is to have a friend who happens to be a party planner? I swear— I didn't become friends with Seri with the intent of using and exploiting her talents. Our kids are in the same preschool class and they became friends first. (Good work, Mazzy!)
Anyway, I gave Seri the green light, she contacted Penny & the Puppettes (a Manhattan based traveling puppet show) and got to work.
Honest to god, neither Mike nor I lifted a finger (besides sending out last minute invites online— perfect for narrowing down the guest list since many people will already have plans) and come last Sunday, this went down at our place...
It was truly BEYOND anything I ever imagined and I don't even have pictures of the HOT CHOCOLATE BAR. All desserts were made by the fabulous Kristan of Kreated By K and yes, those are cow finger puppets adorning the cake pops. The whole set-up even outdid the mood board, which never happens.
Mazzy, of course, was THRILLED.
The party was awesome (I'll call it comfortably crowded), Mazzy had a blast (she singlehandedly ate about 3/4 of the cake pops), there were no major spills or tantrums (except a pink sprinkle incident that was thwarted quickly) and everyone LOVED the puppet show. So much so that I need to give Merissa, the very talented and funny woman behind Penny & the Puppettes a big shout-out...
Penny & the Puppettes is an interactive musical customized for your occasion for kids 2-8. Merissa sings original songs using puppets, props, instruments and continuous audience participation to keep the kids fully engaged while also teaching age appropriate lessons about things like feelings, respect and peer pressure. Plus, Mazzy got to hug all the puppets, so that's what really counts.
Honestly, I couldn't believe how well Merissa commanded a room of so many three-year-olds. If it wasn't for her, I'm sure someone would have tackled the dessert table and toppled the cake before we ever got to sing "Happy Birthday".
Well, nothing happened except we inherited a SHIT TON of gifts.
I promptly stole a bunch and hid them to use for Hanukah.
That's legal, right?