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The Wheels on the Bus Go...

Straight to Miss P's 2nd Birthday party! This past weekend, we hosted 73 people, ranging in age from 3 mos. to 80 years at Roach Gymnastics for our daughter's 2nd birthday, and it was awesome! I feel like this place is a local "best kept secret" of party places. It. Is. Awesome. I switched to this location last minute, and was just looking for something similar to where I had planned the party originally, and this venue was SO. MUCH. BETTER! We had 73 people, and until we were eating cake, it didn't even feel crowded. They offer bounce houses, balance beams, a rope swing, a giant trampoline, tumbling area, mini foam pit, and more. It was great for all of the kids, that ranged in age from 3 mos. to 12 years old. The staff was awesome and helped with setup, clean-up, and taking things out to our car. I can not give higher praises to this venue. If you are hosting a function with kiddos, look no further!

We went with the "Wheels on the Bus" theme for this party, because Miss P is obsessed with this song. We listen to it on repeat in the car, and she loves to sing it with hand motions and all. We thought it was the perfect fit! It is suprisingly hard to find school bus themed things, or even toy school buses for that matter! I'll link up to some things I found, but start looking early if this is something you're interested in. And, even though I really didn't need to do anything but bring some food and cake to this venue, for all of you that know me, you know that is simply not possible. There is only one thing that I would not have purchased for this party, balloons. I bought balloons, but I didn't even end up putting them out. I wanted to enjoy our guests, and food obviously takes priority over balloons!

Food. What do you make to cost effectively feed 60+ people, when the food needs to be transported from one place to another? In my opinion, crock-pots are always the way to go in this case, So our menu consisted of pulled pork sandwiches, tortellini pasta salad (recipe at the bottom), single bags of chips, fruit, and veggies with hummus. By the time I took pics, eating had already commenced, so I didn't get a picture of the pulled pork station...

To go along with our "Wheels on the Bus" themed party, we had "Bus Fuel" to drink. A fabulous friend of mine offered to bring the punch and even suggested the flavor, which was perfect! Our "Bus Fuel" was one part apple juice to one part ginger ale. It was super yummy and was consumed way more than most of the punches that I've made for parties. We also had some bottled water for anyone not into the sweet drink. Oh! Do you see the colorful cups in the picture to the left? Target had the 4 packs on sale for $2.69 each, so we grabbed a few for anyone that forgot a sippy cup, or would prefer their kiddo had a lid with their drink. As a mom, I know that these are the party touches I most appreciate.

In the past, I have DIY'd the party favors, but this time around, my hubby suggested that I purchase something. I would love to say that it is because I'm pregnant, but really, he hates my crafting messes. And because I respect him and want to remain married, I happily obliged! I found super cute The Wheels on the Bus (Pudgy Board Book)  on Amazon for $2.95ea. What. A. Deal. We are big into reading at our house, so a book is the perfect parting gift from us. I also ended up making "Stop Light Rice Krispie Treats" that I found on Pinterest, because 1.) a family doesn't need multiple of the same book, 2.) I had a big age range with the kiddos, and 3.) who doesn't like an edible parting gift!?! In the past, I've had people forget their parting gifts, that was not the case this time, so I would say they were a WIN!

Because my favorite bakery closed up shop recently, and all our daughter wanted for her birthday was, "Cake... Candles... And friends," I had to track down a bus themed birthday cake to coordinate with everything. Again, bus themed things are much harder to find than I was anticipating. I checked two local places, and neither of them would draw a bus on the cake. When I called Costco, the bakery gal told me that they could do a road and I could add a toy bus. I wasn't in love with the idea at first, but Costco cake is oh so yummy, and when I couldn't get a bus drawn on the actual cake, it was definitely the best and most cost effective option. For an added sweet treat, we put out mini chocolate donuts, or "Wheels Off The Bus" as we called them. All of the fun Carson Dellosa School Bus Cut-Outs (120097) that I used to label things with, I found on Amazon. 36 cut-outs come in a pack for $4.99. I have quite a few left over, but they really did work perfectly!

With all of the fun details that go into a party, the number one detail we could never have a celebration without, are our family and friends. We are so thankful to everyone who came out to celebrate with us! We had people come from 10 minutes away up to almost 2 hours away. You are all such a blessing to us, and we truly enjoy living a life of celebration with you! Thank you not only for the thoughtful gifts, but even more importantly for taking time out of your Saturday evening to celebrate with us! You helped all of Miss P's birthday wishes come true, and for that we are grateful.

Serves 20
20 Minutes Prep -- 1 Hour Chill

1.5 lbs Five Cheese Tortellini (from Costco)
1 Cucumber Cut & Halved
5 Oz. Grape Tomatoes Sliced
1/2 Orange Bell Pepper Chopped
1/4 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
1 Cup Cubed Sharp Cheddar Cheese
1 Cup Zesty Italian Dressing

Cut and chop all of the produce and put in a large bowl. Cook pasta to al dente, then strain and run under cold water. Add pasta to produce. Add cubed sharp cheddar cheese and grated Parmesan to bowl. Pour Italian Dressing over all of the ingredients, and mix together. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour before serving. Make sure to stir it again before you serve it, because the dressing tends to settle to the bottom of the bowl.

**Other veggies you could add are black olives, red peppers or yellow peppers.**


Amy Seidl said…
It was a wonderful celebration of a sweet little girl whom we love very much! We love her parents just as much too! Thanks for your hospitality and kind words about the bus fuel lol! Happy 2nd Sweet P! You are one lucky girl!

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