Last week was Abbey’s 3rd birthday! Ah! I can not even believe it’s been 3 years since my baby was a baby! Time flies! We decided – and by we I mean mostly me and a little bit of Abbey – that we were going to have a swim party because it’s always so hot in September around here… and what better theme to go with swimming, than mermaids! So we had an Under the Sea Party!
Yay mermaids!! Yay Under the Sea Party!
We are such a Disney family, and we love to take inspiration from the classic movies (maybe you remember our Abbey in Wonderland party for the BIG #1!) without going overboard in a cartoonish sort of way. I love taking elements and making them my own, so I was so excited to create my Under the Sea Party/Mermaid Party Pin Board and start gathering ideas.
For our decor, we went with lots of shells, gems, fishing nets and assorted vintage finds from the thrift store… Mermaids are total hoarders, so “Treasure Trove Chic” is what I went for for tablescapes and centerpieces. I found all of it at Michael’s, Dollar Tree and Goodwill.
And we cannot forget, lots of bubbles all around for the kids to play with and create ambiance.
Inside on the dessert table, we had similar decor, along with lots of fun treats and candies. A fish bowl from Dollar Tree filled with mini sour ropes made excellent “Sour Eels”. Gummi Sharks also made an appearance.
One of my favorite treats I made were these ADORABLE Oyster Cookies! The shells are the lemon cookies from Pepperidge Farm, sandwiched with some basic vanilla buttercream frosting, tinted pink (with a Wilton 2D tip) and some Sixlet Pearls I found at Walmart in the baking aisle! They were a HUGE hit, and SO easy to make!
The star of the show was definitely the Sand Castle cake that we made the day before. I LOVE how it turned out! So stinking cute, and really quite easy. I made 1 large rectangle cake, 2 rounds and 24 cupcakes using 3 boxes of mix (I doctored them up using my secret technique – another blog post soon, I promise!). The base of the cake is the rectangle, then the rounds, one cut slightly smaller with a cupcake on top. The spires are frosted ice cream sugar cones. Everything was frosted with vanilla butter cream and covered in graham cracker crumbs we crushed in the food processor. The cupcakes were frosted with vanilla buttercream tinted seafoam blue and topped with Little Mermaid toothpick decor I found at Michael’s as well as more of the Sixlet pearls.
Here’s a close up of the cake. I added some candy melt decorations that I made the day before… starfish, shells, coral and seaweed pieces – I think it really added a beautiful element to the cake, plus they tasted yummy! I melted them in a glass bowl set on top of simmering water, and stirred until smooth. Once it had cooled to the touch, but was still pliable, I put them in piping bags and snipped the tip so I could easily pipe the shapes out onto parchment paper. I freehanded them, but you could draw pictures on the other side of the paper and use them to trace shapes for a more uniform look if you wanted. More pearls because I love them.
More treats on the sweets table included this vintage milk glass candy bowl filled with Nerds that I labeled “Aquarium Sand”…
Some Nilla Wafers sandwiched with extra frosting, called “Clam Sandwiches”…
Some “Sea Water Taffy” in assorted matching colors as well… I love the decor! It looks so cute and it was so perfect!
Outside by the BBQ area, we had this adorable bucket I got from Pick Your Plum, that I labeled “Dinglehoppers” with some chalk washi tape.
Mermaid Punch was a HUGE hit and was very simple to make. I mixed 1 gallon of Blue Hawaiian Punch with 3 cans of Frozen Lemonade Concentrate and a 2 liter of 7-up, and then filled the container with ice and about a gallon of water. It was such a beautiful sea blue. We also had some Salty Sea Dog Popcorn in the cutest little nautical striped bags. For food (that I didn’t snap pics of, because I was eating and feeding the kids) we did some Sea Shell pasta salad, a big green salad, some lemon chicken pasta and hot dogs. Lots of fruit, veggies, chips and dips too! It was a very fun time and I know the kids loved it!
Instead of goodie bags, I opted for a Pirate’s Buried Treasure Pinata – filled with gold doubloons, funny money, crowns, eye patches, necklaces, bracelets, and all kinds of treasures (and yes, some candy too) – I figured it was more fun to find the buried treasure than just handing out goodie bags anyway. The kids had a great time trading their loot for other things as well.
And of course… lots of swimming!
My brother in law was teaching the kids how to fish in the pool…
It was a super fun day and Abbey got lots of great gifts and had a blast hanging out with our friends and family! I am so glad so many people came to celebrate lil peanut’s 3rd birthday!
Thank you so much to everyone who came out!
What birthday theme are you planning this year?