I am not even sure where to start with this party. It turned out perfect, and according to Avery, just what she wanted. The rain though, oh the rain, nearly broke me. In the early afternoon it had rained and cleared off. Everything was looking perfect especially with the cloud cover and cooler temperature. Then, 30 minutes before the party we were making a mad dash to carry everything inside as it open up again. I was trying to re-figure an indoor set up knowing the photos wouldn't be what I had hoped. It was a good 15 minute pour. Then we started the debate of whether to move it all back out. My family calmly put up with my disappointment / craziness, and they carried things back and forth to make it all happen. As the guests were arriving, we began the set up outside again. Thankfully there were plenty of activities to entertain the kiddos in the meantime.
Avery's wish was for a chasing fireflies party, and my goal was to make it come true. I must say it turned into a bit of a magical evening.
The first activity of the night was painting sticks. No, this doesn't have anything to do with fireflies, but it is a fun outdoor activity, and Avery loves to paint.
We prepared the sticks ahead of time with eye hooks, twine for hanging, and tags for identification.
Next up, was stringing bug catcher necklaces. I found the idea here, and they turned out super cute. We changed up the tutorial a bit, so I could have the capsules already strung, and the guests could add the beads they wanted.
The final craft was creating fireflies from plastic Easter eggs. They each housed a battery opperated tea light to create the effect. You can find the full instructions on the JoAnn's tutorial.
Of course the main event was catching fireflies, or lightning bugs if you prefer! With the overcast skies they actually showed up earlier than expected. I wish I could give a count of how many we caught. Let's suffice it to say that the fireflies may fear our yard for the next couple of days! This photo was one of the few successful attempts at getting a firefly while it was lit up.
Once we settled on the color scheme of navy, turquoise, purple, and yellow, the details began to come together. The Ikea cart housed the paper party goods, favors, and bug catching jars.
The invitations from Cherry Berry Design were just perfect!
Favors included bug nets and a key ring flashlight. I typed up a list of 5 firefly facts on a mason jar graphic to include in the flash light packaging. While we catch and release our fireflies, I wanted guests to know that they can keep them for a couple of days with a damp paper towel in the jar with holes poked in the top.
We randomly found little tin firefly pins at a Mexican market while we were in Austin earlier this year, so I used glue dots to sprinkle them around the decor. I didn't let any scraps of the Sarah Jane Studios fabric from Avery's birthday dress go to waste!! Avery also received the Sarah Jane art print as one of her birthday gifts.
I made the pinwheels by making a sandwich with cardstock, fabric, and spray adhesive. Super fast and festive!
The mason jar light string from my trip to Warrenton and Junk Gypsy was an extra bit of fun.
Since the party took place around dinner time, we served hot dogs, tater tots, trail mix, and fruit.
We wrapped a few cans with fabric strips to serve the tator tots.
Avery helped a little with our yarn hanging backdrop, and of course I added another piece of the Wee Wander fabric.
We served mason jar firefly cookies complete with gold luster dust highlights. These cookies always go fast at our parties, so I asked Avery what we should fill in with if we made another batch of smaller scale cookies. The round ones were her idea.
Any outdoor summertime evening event has to include a s'more element, so I made s'more push pops with graham cracker crumbles, chocolate pudding and marshmallow fluff.
My parents brought some colorful popcorn from our favorite popcorn shop.
Avery picked lemon cupcakes for the main dessert and even determined the perfect shade of yellow icing when she helped with the prep.
Another firefly sighting!!
I can't believe this girl is eight!! She is growing into such a great little party hostess herself. Even as I was frantic about the rain, she insisted is was all ok. When she thanks me at the end of each party, my heart just melts. The "chase fireflies" necklace was an Etsy find for another birthday gift.
Another birthday party in the books, and another story told through the photos. My hope is that these "stories" are a lasting record of the celebration we create and enjoy for our daughters.