Last night was Ben's graduation party! We have waited a long time to celebrate this occasion and it was well worth the wait. I am so, so proud of him and his dedication to finishing. It was a great night of celebration, preceded by a lot of time getting ready this past week. As always, I had lots of help and the preparation was just so much fun for me.
Pretty much all of the decorations I put together for the party were paper. This was a great option because it was super afforable! I can buy packages of tissue paper and rolls of crepe paper for $1 a piece. That was fantastic. I could make everything in advance but, because it was all paper and very delicate in the outdoors nothing could be decorated until the day of the party! Luckily, I had my sweet mom and this sweet angel there to help!
A couple of weeks ago, Mendy and I started on the crepe paper ruffled streamers that I saw on MADE. I knew as soon as I saw that tutorial that they HAD to be done for Ben's party and put it in my inspiration post and everything. They turned out fantastic and were so quick and easy. I salvaged all that I could of them when I took them down so that maybe they can be re-used for another party!
I also got inspired to make some festive paper lanterns after I saw this post. Martha Stewart...she is good. These look like they take forever to make but, I was surprised at how fast they seemed to go. I ended up making 5 total and it was just enough for the back porch.
My last project for the party was to make table decorations. For every fiesta-theme party that I saw, there were paper flowers and I just loved them. I ended up using this tutorial on MADE (yet again) for simple wedding flowers but, I used tissue paper instead of napkins. They ended up being kind of a mix of tissue paper poms and the simple wedding flowers. I loved the colors and I had some great help from my sweet D group busting these out the night before the party. I used them in my painted vases (that I have gotten SO much use out of) and wrapped some strips of fabric around the vases.
The only other decor I had to have was some Papel Picado. I did not know that is what it was called but, it is that Mexican flag bunting that has the picture cut outs in it that was on the graduation invitation. I ordered it from the Amols website where they had all things fiesta for only $3.99. It was super cute and so worth it!
Overall, the party decor was super colorful and a lot of fun. And, the Harrison's backyard was a PERFECT setting for a fiesta theme party. It is so beautifully landscaped and colorful. It was great.
I mean, how perfect are these Jimmy Buffett Margaritaville Chairs and the Parrot windsock in the background.
Ben had the time of his life with so many fun people that could come and celebrate with us. He felt overwhelmed with gratitude from all the people that came. He had friends from work, lifelong friends, neighbors, and family all show up to celebrate. It was a great time!
We catered Papasito's and it was delicious! Seriously...so good.
Kinley LOVED having some of her friends there too. There were not many kids but, we staked out a table kind of out of the way by the pool, Kinley's swing, and the grass. They played and played and had so much fun together.
I had some koozies made on TotallyKoozies.com as a party favor for all the guests and they were a big hit...and very useful at the party.
I also had a little candy guessing game going on that night for the guests. Whoever could guess closest to the number of pieces of candy in the jar would win a bottle of tequila. I seriously CANNOT get over this....my cousin, Cary, is married to Chris and he totally Goodwill-Hunting-ed it and did this insane calculation with volume and double-variable equations and stuff on a napkin and came up with the EXACT number of pieces of candy. This was no guess...it was totally calculated and genius. I couldn't believe it. I am still talking about it today...total nerd in me coming out. Their sweet baby boy on the way will be a total genius.
This is Chris explaining to some guys how his equations worked. They were so, so impressed.
Kinley was such a trooper and stayed up super late so that Ben and I could stay with the guests. She found lots of ways to entertain herself and had plenty of people to play with. She loved playing with Aunt Jan by the pool and walking around with Pops. Also, she really couldn't be seen much without a lollipop in her hand.
Later in the night Ben had a few people toast him under the cabana. It was a great tribute. Not sure what these faces are....but, they are cute brothers.
We had so much fun at the party and are so thankful for everyone that came. I can't say enough how proud of Ben I am. I love you honey!