Emma's "Two Sweet" Fall Birthday

This past weekend, we celebrated Emma's second birthday! Let me just say: FALL BIRTHDAYS ARE THE BEST. (I'm not partial. Oh wait, me and my September birthday are biased.) Last year, we did a "our little pumpkin is one!" fall-themed party, and this year, I decided to do a "two sweet" party.....fall-style. That basically meant apple everything!

I snapped a few photos of the decorations while the kids slept during naptime, but once people arrived for the party, I only took a handful of random photos. So, most of these are just of the setup/decor...but that's because we were too busy having fun to document the actual party more! And in case you're wondering why there was no cake & candles picture: It's because I totally forgot to have Emma blow out candles, and we never even sang to her! Oops!! I was going to put a two candle in a cider donut........and completely forgot. Pregnant mama memory fail!

See more fun gatherings here: Backyard dinner party | Hosting a baby pool party | Friendsgiving dinner alternatives

If you're planning a fall party or wondering how & what we did, I've included the details below (including what worked and what I wish I had done differently)!

Our simple fall party menu: 

  • Hot apple cider in the crockpot with a ladle
  • Apples slices and caramel dip
  • Cut veggies and ranch
  • Pretzel sticks, chex mix
  • Bruschetta, french bread, and artichoke dip that my aunt made!!
  • White chicken chili in the crockpot
  • Cornbread
  • Two trays of apple crisp 
  • Apple cider donuts
  • Homemade waffle cones my sister made, with pumpkin ice cream!

The easy, low-budget decor: 

  • Baskets, $3 each in the Target dollar section
  • Apples, on sale at Aldi
  • Small pumpkins from Trader Joe's
  • Mini hay bales from Home Depot
  • Mums
  • These pale red balloons for an "apple" balloon banner
  • Brown paper  ($5 at Lowe's!) tablecloths because you can write cute messages/lettering on them, and they're recyclable when the party's over!

Things that made the day go smoothly: 
  • Setting up the tables and chairs outside a day in advance
  • Peeling & chopping the apples for apple crisp a day before the party
  • Chopping the onion, garlic, and green pepper for chili a day in advance
  • Pre-measuring all the spices and saving them in bags in the fridge for both the chili and the apple crisp. When it came time to start the crockpot, I just dumped everything in! And for the apple crisp, I did the same thing and dumped everything in a pan and stuck it in the oven as we finished dinner.
  • Making the balloon banner a day ahead of time 
  • Baking the cornbread the day before 
  • Setting up the brown paper "table cloths" that morning
  • Chopping veggies during naptime before the party (could have done this a day in advance, too!)
  • Having yard games for the adults and a few outdoor toys for the kids already set up in the backyard. This gave people something to do as everyone was arriving and after everyone had finished eating
I wish I had asked my dear sister-in-law to snap photos on her dslr, and I wish I had gotten to talk to everyone a little more. I felt like I talked only a little bit to each person, as opposed to really getting to sit down and talk for a while with everyone. Also apparently I needed to put someone in charge of getting the candles out and starting the Happy Birthday song, since clearly I couldn't trust myself to do that! Haha!

There are way more cute kid photos than I'm sharing here, for privacy reasons, but just know that Aiden and Emma had a blast with their little friends :) 

^^Real life, trying to get a kid to eat at her own party! Haha 

What are some fun fall gatherings you're going to or planning this year? 

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