A year ago this past Christmas, our sweet girl received a small stuffed gray bunny in her stocking. In truth at the time, it was more an after thought than anything else, but from the moment she laid eyes on that toy, it was love at first sight. Now, so many months later, she and Little Gray Bunny (crazy name, eh?) are rather inseparable. What better way to celebrate our darling girl’s birthday than with a bunny-themed party? I floated the idea with her and she was ecstatic. Sold.
With the bunny theme, I tried to make use of a lot of floral and garden elements in the decor. Though we have avoided the pink/girly phase with Caroline as much as possible and we try to buy her neutral colored things in general, she has reached the pink phase all on her own. I decided to just embrace it for this party. After all, Bunny did have a pink nose once upon a time. I bought a grapevine wreath and a few coordinating florals on sale from the craft store and stuck them all together at random. It turned out to be a super fast but cute craft and made a nice decoration for the entryway. (Side note – my extremely talented friend Courtney designed adorable invitations for the party, and I forgot to get a pic before I sent them all out. Fail!)
On the left – the first photo ever taken of Caroline and Bunny on that special Christmas morning. On the right – It turns out that Bunny has appeared in SO many photos of Caroline, it has become a bit of a phenomenon. For Christmas this past year, I printed a few of these custom storybooks as gifts for our family: The Adventures of Caroline and Little Gray Bunny: Vol. 1 (because additional volumes will clearly follow.)
The party was held at lunch time so I wanted to provide enough food to make a substantial meal, but also be fruit and veggie-heavy…mostly bunny food, you know. Here’s what we had:
French Onion Sliders
Mac and Cheese Cups
Creamy Cucumber Bites
Assorted Veggies with Roasted Red Pepper Hummus
Roasted Tomato and Goat Cheese Crostini
Roasted Veggie Chickpea Salad
Assorted Fresh Fruit
Carrot Cake Whoopie Pies
Blackberry Shortcake Trifles
Strawberry Birthday Cake
To make the food labels, I printed out the names of each dish on craft paper card stock and cut them into tag shapes. Then I taped the tags to a toothpick. The base is actually a wine cork cut in half lengthwise, covered with a bit of moss from the craft store (hot glued on top). Once the glue dried, I stuck the toothpicks into the base and had the finished product, which reminded me of labels used in garden plots.
I always love looking back at photos from the past year and choosing some favorites to display at the party. I didn’t have a lot of time to do anything fancy this year so I just covered some foam board with bunny print paper and added the photos. Quick and easy.
A quick pic of me and my girl from the party. (Sorry for the blur, but she’s a constant blur these days! No time to hold still for a photo.)
While everyone enjoyed their cake, we decided to continue our tradition from last year with a short story time by some fabulous readers. Caroline’s Uncle Steve (a teacher and very excellent story reader) read Knuffle Bunny by Mo Willems, one of our very favorite books. Andrew, extremely proud of his newfound reading proficiency, didn’t want to be left out, so he also read a book aloud to everyone. I love this boy.
I wasn’t in the mood to do the usual sugar cookies with royal icing, and I have long been wanting to try my hand at painted cookies. I finally decided to give it a try to make these bunny tails with watercolor effect (yes, totally edible) and I loved the way these turned out. I can’t wait to play around more with painted cookies! The kids especially loved these.
We are indescribably grateful for our sweet and spunky girl. It is incredible to see how much she has grown and yet how small she still seems (at least when she sleeps). And of course, we are also thankful for her well loved Little Gray Bunny that brings her such happiness.
Floral “C” – Hello Charlotte James
Felted miniature bunnies – Bondurant Mountain Art
Floral paper garland, boxwood wreath – The Blaithin Blair Shop
Custom photo book – Artifact Uprising
Trifle/parfait glasses – Pier 1
Cups, plates, napkins – TomKat Studio Shop
Spoons and forks – Sucre Shop
Bunny print paper, craft card stock, pink polka dot and cupcake wrapping paper – Paper Source