Thursday, March 10, 2016

John Deere 4th Birthday

I'm still having a hard time saying "Parker is 4" - still sounds crazy and is hard to believe.  We have a 4 year old!

The Saturday following Parker's birthday, we had a little party for him at our house.  Up until this year a birthday party hasn't really been his thing.  Due to some of his sensory issues and basic preferences, he's never really wanted a birthday party.  He's been fine to keep the celebrating low key.  However, I have done my best to make birthdays 1, 2 and 3 really special without having a party. We've had themes, fun cakes, lots of decorations and a day of good times and memories! 

Well, this year I asked Parker if we wanted to have a birthday party and right away he said "Yes!"  I asked again the next week just to make sure (which he said yes again) and then John and I talked about it and decided to have a birthday party at our house.  Even though he wanted a party, I didn't want it too be too big so we decided to invite a few of our closest neighbors and the couples from our small group at church.  We could have invited several more guests, but we had to draw the line somewhere and wasn't sure how Parker would do not having had one before. 

Spoiler Alert - he LOVED it, did so well and we had so much fun! 

I asked Parker what kind of party he wanted and the first thing he said was "John Deere".  The boy loves tractors (always has) so it was fitting and I was excited about the theme.  I had so much fun planning all of the details and making it special for him.  I love any chance I get to craft and decorate - especially when it involves Parker.  

As the invitation said, "Start your tractors and put them in gear"
...and let's take a look at Parker's 4th birthday party
 


The birthday boy - big FOUR!
My sweet family - I sure do love my people!
I had so much fun with the food.  The party was at 10:30 so we had a mix of savory and sweet snacks.  Of course all of the food had to go along with the "tractor" theme. 

 
 
To drink we had a little coffee bar (tractor oil), green punch (antifreeze) and water bottles (water through).
  
One of our neighbors made the cupcakes - the were as yummy as the look.  She made the cupcakes and I made the picks to go in the top.  It was nice just to run down the street to pick them up.   
 
The weather could not have been more perfect - praise the Lord!  We really wanted Parker and his friends to be able to play and run around outside.  We opened the windows inside and left the back door open so guests could go in and out.  It snowed last year on Parker's birthday, so I'm grateful the weather was so nice for his party.

We turned our summer water table into a "corn farm" for the party.  We poured a couple of bags of popcorn in it and threw some tractors, scoops and funnels in to play with.  

 
Parker with his love - Avery!  He's been smitten since the day they met and she's so good to Parker. He was excited to have her there. Her big brother Tristan was running around too, but big sister Haley (and also our wonderful babysitter) had a dance competition so she wasn't able to come and was missed.  We have a special place in our hearts for the Burden kids!
Zoey (who will be 4 very soon) and Karlyn (who turned 5 in December).  We love these sweet girls (and their little sisters).  Zoey and Karlyn's parents are in our small group.  We have really enjoyed getting to know their families better.  Parker and Zoey were born a little over a month apart so they have been in the church nursery together since they were newborn babes. 
 
Lincoln and Cayden live next door to each other and a few houses down from us.  It's been neat to watch Parker play and grow up with them these past two years. He had just turned 2 when we met these boys and now they are great friends. 
 
Landrey is 2 and Lincoln's little sister. Parker loves Landrey.  She was only a couple months old when we moved here and now she's right in the middle with all the kiddos. 
Mikey lives down the street from us.  He's a big kindergartener and super sweet. Because of school, schedules and living several houses apart, we don't get to see him too much but we have fun when we do. 
Vivi is our next door neighbor's niece.  They were watching her everyday when we first moved in two years ago and she was just a baby.  She was one of our first little friends on the street.  Now she goes to school so we don't see her too often, but we were glad she came to play. 
Mommy and Daddy got Parker a cool new picnic table for the backyard for his birthday.  Daddy got it set up so it could be used at the party.  Parker approved!  I can see many picnics, snacks, crafts, homeschool preschool work and all sorts of things at this table on pretty days!

 Jacolin and Dylen live down the street AND go to church with us.  When does that happen?  Not very often!  Jacolin is just a few months older than Parker and Dylen is 2 and will be 3 in a couple of months.  They are cute kids and always up for some fun.  All of these kids on the street have gone trick-or-treating together the past two years which is a hoot. 
 
These boys are big buddies! I'm filled with joy and it makes my heart so happy to see them together.  Parker is such a lucky boy - he hit the Daddy jackpot!
 
From left to right - Renee (who lives right next door to us and is Avery, Tristan and Haley's mom), me (of course), Brittany (Lincoln and Landrey's mom) and Jenna (Jacoiln and Dylen's mom). I'm so blessed to be friends with these girls and share life together.  I must also mention that Renee took a lot of these pictures.  I took a few, but she kindly agreed to take pictures with her nice camera while we enjoyed the party.  I'm so grateful!  I've said it so many times, but I just love our neighborhood.     
 
Parker got so many neat gifts and fun things to play with!




Kati (Karyln's mom) and Samantha (Zoey's mom).  I was so glad that they came with their girls. Kati and Samantha both had baby girls last year so they are both moms of two girls.  Through Sunday school and small group, I have really enjoyed getting to know them better. 

 

 
And when all the guests were gone, it was time to play!
 Gosh, I love this boy!  
His first birthday party was a success and loads of fun.  Parker did great and I'm so glad it was a special day for him.  I had as much fun as he did planning the party and watching him enjoy the day. I'm thankful for everyone that came to celebrate Parker.

Now that the party has come and gone, I can start trying to wrap my head around having a 4 year old - wow!  He's such a fun age...I have a feeling this is going to be a great year!

Until we meet again...
Riley  

2 comments:

  1. I've always meant to ask if you knew the McAfoos family!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thank you so much for inviting us! Zoey had so much fun (especially with the corn table!!)! I loved all the tractor details! So creative!

    ReplyDelete