I held the party at this local park - El and I spent some time here when we were younger, so I thought it fitting. Plus, whenever I thought about setting up her party, my mind would picture this white pavilion. I tried to reserve it, but no one returned my call... so we just majorly lucked out that no one was there at the time we needed it. Come on in!
I also made a pennant bunting with paper and yarn. I used various shades of purple paper and a purple sharpie to write "31 Reasons to Celebrate!" on the triangles. There's one blank triangle between each word. I attached the triangles to the yarn with the diy washi tape I made. Unfortunately, this was seriously the windiest day in August (seriously. It was crazy.) and my triangles were flying away. So I took my staple gun (smartest thing I took to the park) and stapled the triangles to the front so it just LOOKED like it was hanging there on the yarn...
A friend of ours who is much taller than I, hung the gold white and purple balloons on the center rafters on the ceiling and the cross sections at the sides. (I got the purple balloons with white polka dots at Target).
I made two long pom pom garlands with purple and gold yarn. I should have gotten a closer picture, as you can't really see the pom poms, but they were all different sizes and tied onto a string of yarn randomly. I strung them up on the sides of the pavilion.
Under that garland, I hung another strand of yarn, to which I clipped most of the "reason to celebrate" cards and a bunch of photos of Elaine with friends and family with clothespins.
For the guests, I got the small white bubble bottles at the dollar store. I used small circular labels from the office supply store. On the front I stuck circles with a capital "E" and dots in a circle around it. On the back I put circles that said "thank you!" I wrote in fine point, purple sharpie. (Wish I'd taken a better picture of that...) It might seem an off favor to you, but if you know El at all, you totally understand. Not only is this an homage to her bubbly personality, but she and I have a childlike love for blowing bubbles. It's great stress relief.
She blew them all out, too. But there weren't 31...
And finally, the birthday girl:
Yes, I made her wear the gold glasses and funny hat all day. Ha!
It was a fun little party, and I only wish more people could have made it.
Maybe I should start planning NOW for next July?