A few weeks ago we celebrated William’s 2nd birthday. It is so hard to believe that he is two- it seems we were just celebrating his first birthday a few months ago. William is the sweetest little guy, and we are completely loving watching the new things that he does and says each day. He is talking all the time, often using full sentences. He loves to repeat what other people say, so we always have a little (or not so little- he talks pretty loud ) echo around here. He has the cutest of voice, too. I’m not sure how to describe it here, but trust me it is adorable and funny all at the same time.
One of my favorite things about William’s age right now is that he and his sister are becoming good friends. Up-and-down, happy-and-then-fighting friends, but good friends all the same. They love to play together, and when they do fight, they immediately give each other a hug afterwards. It is the sweetest thing (and yes, we are working on other strategies besides hitting your sibling when you are upset).
William is a happy little guy, and he is very independent. He loves to play with cars, trucks, and trains, which leads us to the theme of this party. I was thinking we needed to have either a car or truck party for his second birthday, since he’s always pushing his trucks and cars around on the floor. When I took William shopping with me to Party City, he saw the Thomas supplies and got so excited, saying “Thomas Train! Thomas Train!” over and over. A Thomas the Train birthday party it was.
This turned out to be a really fun and easy theme to work with. I tried to keep everything fairly simple, and I was really happy with the way everything turned out.
I used the colors of Thomas- blue and red- for most of the party decorations. We decorated the family room with blue and red streamers and I re-used the birthday banner that I made for last year’s colorful birthday party. I loved that colorful banner and was glad to be able to use it again.
We also hung this adorable William train banner from our mantle. My sister, Lisa, made it using her Silhouette Cameo. Above the train I placed a picture of William from each month of the past year. The pictures were displayed in simple frames that I had around the house. I added train “wheels” to label William’s age in each picture.
One of my favorite parts of planning William’s party both this year and last has been looking through the prior year’s pictures to choose one from each month.
I kept the dessert table simple, and I was very happy with the way it turned out. I borrowed a few of William’s Thomas and Friends trains to use as decorations. Red and blue balloons, the party invitation, and the treat bags also added to the Thomas theme.
For the party, I wanted to try a new kind of cupcakes, rather than the usual chocolate, vanilla, or funfetti. The Snickerdoodle Cupcakes that I decided upon were a huge hit. (Sir Topham Hat’s Snickerdoodle Cupcakes!) Recipe to come soon!
The cupcake toppers were also created by Lisa. Aren’t they the cutest? I especially love the topper with the train saying, “Two! Two!”
In attendance at the party were our family and close friends, which came to 21 people, including 6 kids. The kids had a great time playing outside and chasing bubbles from the bubble machine that Grandma Jan brought over. :) Since the kids were all very young- ages 5, 4, 2, and 1, the rest of the time they just had fun playing inside with Julia and William’s toys and each other.
This guy loves his sunglasses! As soon as we went outside, he requested that someone go back in and get them for him, so the sun wouldn’t get his eyes.
We served the party snacks in these “train cars,” labeled as “The Coal Car” (purple grapes), “The Produce Car” (bell pepper strips and baby carrots), and “The Lumber Car” (pretzel sticks). We used painters’ tape to make a track for the snack train.
We of course needed a water tower for when the little engines got thirsty.
The party menu was relatively simple to prepare, plus I had help from my mom and mother-in-law, who brought the beautiful salads. Since the party was in the late afternoon and evening, we served dinner. All of the food was delicious, and I would definitely make all of these dishes again.
We named each dish after a character from Thomas, and Lisa made labels for each item, including pictures of the trains. You can look for the cute labels next to each food item in the pictures below.
Thomas the Train Birthday Party Menu:
Purple Grapes (The Coal Car)
Baby Carrots & Bell Pepper Strips (The Produce Car)
Pretzel Rods (The Lumber Car)
Mighty Mac’s Mac and Cheese
Thomas’ Turkey, Mozzarella, and Pesto Roll-Ups
Gordon’s Green Salad
Fergus’ Fruit Salad
Percy’s Potato Chips
Sir Topham Hat’s Snickerdoodle Cupcakes
Later it was time for the best part of the party- birthday cake! William had been ready for his cupcake (or as he says, “cuptake”) since he saw me baking them in the morning. He looked around quietly as everyone was singing “Happy Birthday” to him, and he knew just what to do when the song was over:
I love those big, beautiful eyes!
William, you are my sweetheart. No matter how old you get, you will always be my little guy. Mommy, Daddy, and Julia love you so, so much!