Shabby Chic Bunny Birthday for Kaylee's 4th Birthday

Boy did I enjoyed this birthday like crazy. It was the most delicate, feminine theme I've ever done. It was so, so pretty. I didn't want it to be done. I wanted to make more and more. I always loved shabby chic, but at one point I felt it was no longer... well- chic! It felt antiquated. It felt heavy, but the biggest detractor was how pricey anything shabby chic is. This theme only began as a bunny theme to take advantage of all the bunny stuff from Easter. But the more I did any project, the more shabby chic stuff I stumbled across. It didn't come easy, but I had to scourge the internet to find free prints. Once I did, the Shabby chic just kept merging with the Bunny theme and this party was born.

People have the misconception that a party like this means I have a lot of money. That could not be further away from the truth. In fact, we barely make ends meet. What I do is I plan MONTHS ahead; recycle everything from my sister's used cardboard from her teaching job, cereal boxes, old decorations from previous birthdays (I even brought a bag of scraps from Honduras); scavenge for sales and good prices (easier done here in Panama); buy one thing every week. One week we buy cocoa powder, the next some tape and glue, the next $2 worth of cardboard, the next flour, the next chocolate chips... and so forth. A $2 difference in your grocery expense will not set you off budget. But my biggest saving comes from the fact that I do EVERYTHING. No purchasing cake, cupcakes, cake pops, piñata, decorations. My mom's church is kind enough to lend us the tables and chairs. Mom chipped in for the favors and Aunt Lilly chipped in for sodas. We do everything in our two small apartments that happen to be next to each other, so one apartment is for tables and food and the other for games and activities. The parking lot served for piñata breaking and even an egg hunt.

It's been some time since I painted anything, but I really enjoyed painting that bunny. I messed up one of the cheeks and had to do some patch work. Can you notice?

View of the dessert table.

My favorite thing is the carrot garland.

When I put the backdrop on the wall, it was the bunny and the vines. My mom and sis looked at it with a funny look. "Why did you do those ugly vines?" my sister asked. She understood once she saw me put the roses up. Those roses were SOOO hard to make. 

That carrot garland is so funny!
The Kaylee banner was so much prettier in person. In pictures it looks heavy. This is, however a Shabby chic characteristic. I should have simplified the look to a more cohesive color scheme, but I loved it.

I had so much fun making roses in different materials, especially in gum paste. We have tissue paper roses, cardboard roses, painted roses, printed roses, buttercream roses, gum paste roses, royal icing roses, and even egg carton roses. 

I saw some sculpting videos on Youtube to bring up my fondant game, and I have to say it paid off. How expressive are the eyes of my bunnies. I've had sculpting tools for a while now, but never knew how to use them. Youtube, people! There is nothing you can't learn from there. (Yes, that is a double negative. XD)

The buttercream work on the cake could have been better had I had a turn table and a spatula. (That is how not rich I am, guys! I could not afford a spatula). Tia Sara came to visit us here in Panama the week after Kaylee's birthday and purchased one for me.

Those are weinstock worthy roses. (I can dream right.)

I was finally able to pipe a buttercream rose I could be proud of. Still needs work, especially the buttercream consistency, but they were pretty. 

The family was worried I would be too exhausted from doing so much, so we agreed I wouldn't do the cookies. But the morning of the birthday I was looking at those adorable fenced boxes I had made specifically for the cookies plus the only cookie cutter I had ever purchased. I couldn't resist myself.  
They were worth it. It was my hub's favorite thing in the table. 

I saw these egg carton boxes online and could not resist making them. Mom's friend Dianne sent me some chocolate eggs from Miami and they were a perfect fit.

I had purchased some chocolate eggs for the egg carton, but the eggs were too small. I had made these bunny boxes and they were perfect for more eggs. None of the kids had any complaints.

Those Cadburry chocolate eggs looked like the real deal.

I hate, hate, hate, HATE making cake pops. I hate it! I don't think I will make cake pops again, even though they were my friend Carolina's favorite. 

They were perfect fit for the theme though. 

Loved my veggie patch cupcakes!

We reused the cake stand I made for Emmalee's birthday.

These were a free printable from teacherspayteachers. A nice teacher did these for her students and gave it away for us to use. I forgot to take a picture of the adorable cotton tail these juice boxes had.

How Shabby chic are these? Adorbs!

Can you believe I could not find these brown paper bags and had to make them myself? And when I had already done them, I stumbled across some in a store. I wanted to scream. I did not make them to be frugal!

We made sure to have a different design for the boys.

I only put two tables (second table not in sight) for eating this time. In Emmalee's birthday the third table made everything feel cramped and the third table was underutilized. 

Same topiary from Emmalee's birthday with a bow, roses, and butterflies added.

I used old dresses from the girls that were not nice enough to gift to make the flags and the strips on the hot air balloon. This is how this theme had started: hot air balloon bunny theme. I had done hot air balloon for Kaylee's baby shower, but I felt the theme needed a revisit. Because the theme ended evolving to something different, I might revisit this theme again as it was still not done well.

How awesome are those sock bunnies? And the details on the balloon. My sister jumped to claim one of them for herself. 

I had fun making those roses with mom. My sister kept most of the decoration to decorate her classroom next year for Easter. Emmalee painted that ceramic chick Dianne sent her.

This bird cage seen on Pinterest ended up looking more like a Greek temple. Still kept it for the girls' room though.

I also kept one of these for the girls' room. It is soooooo cute. Those are the egg carton roses. Isn't the texture wonderful?

This is the girl's new lamp for their room. It is sooooo pretty. I tell you, I loved this theme.

This one also hangs in the girls' room. The lantern was recycled from the one on Kaylee's birthday last year. 

These took soooo long to make. I had to purchase these smaller egg cartons for the container. We were having an egg painting workshop as the main activity in the party and I wanted the kids to have a place to take their eggs with them. I was so happy they loved them. I loved them.

Boy's design for these ones too.

A turkish deligh box my mom had lying around turned into a shabby chic box for cards. Because I make all these so many months in advance, those heart jars with roses were used for Valentine's Day decorations. Re-use, people!

A friend gave me these roses out of the blue on a simple box. It was perfect for the theme and didn't require much to make it Shabby chic.

Pin the tail on the rabbit ready.

Again recycling the picture time sign form Emmalee's birthday. Bunny ears and whiskers ready for lovely pics. 

I had forgotten to take a picture of these and took them at night to show you. Easiest, fastest, and cheapest decoration!

How cute is that jumping bunny?!!

That was not the dress she was suppose to wear for her party, but she wanted to show off her bunny. The dress is too big for her, but if she is happy I am happy.

Lovely friends! How I love these kids!

All bunnied up!

Mom used resurrection eggs (you can read about them here) to tell the real story of Easter and give the gospel to the kids and the parents. The kids were so into the story. I love it.

I would have one kid come up and open the egg. He or she would then pass it around to the other kids and tell me what was inside, and I would tell them the part of the story that corresponded to the item inside.

She had waited long to get her hands on those eggs!

Kaylee did not win the tossing game.

Everyone bunnied up.

It was a parent-kid collab to win pin the tail on the rabbit.

The hubs and I harvested 60 egg shells for this activity. It was hard work and so annoying to do. I was worried all that work was for nothing and the kids would paint one or two and be bored. Nope. They painted all 60 of them and wanted more. They were so excited they had enough eggs to color and color. 

Emmalee was more into dyeing the eggs while Kaylee was more into putting stickers to them.

Easiest piñata design ever!

I love my family.

Kaylee Birthday Interview, Age 4

How old are you? She shows me four fingers.
What is your favorite TV show? Justin Time.
What is your favorite movie? My Little Pony
What is your favorite thing to do at school? Play.
What is your favorite color? Pink,
What is your favorite toy? Pinkie Pie
What do you want to be when you grow up? Bigger.
What is your favorite book? A Book for Puchku.
Who is your best friend? Sarah and Emmalee and Carlitos.
What is your favorite animal? Bunny
What is your favorite place? The pool and park.
What is your favorite thing to do with mom? Go to the park.
What is your favorite thing to do with dad? Crayons
What is your favorite thing to do with Emmalee? Go to the pool.  

Dear Kaylee,
My beautiful baby, my last baby, how much you fill my heart. I remembered begging God to at least let me get to your 4th birthday so you could MAYBE remember me. Baby, you turned 4 and mommy's last scan was clean! You and your sister are my reason to fight. Baby girl, it was such a tough fight, but you made it easy. You and your sister are the most understanding and supportive young ladies ever. I have to be honest, baby girl, I was so worried no one would show up to your birthday. You and your sister woke up singing birthday party song that you made up. Your excitement was tangible, and then it was time for your party to start and no one had shown up! Panamanian time, baby, because all your friends showed up. You have become more social. It was not as natural to you as it was for your sister, but you are so open now. I continued to be amazed my your evolution. You are selective in who you shower with attention, but whoever you chose is the luckiest person ever. You are loyal. You usually pick people who are like you: not so naturally social, but you are able to bring down their walls and make them fall for you. You also go for people who are usually alone; and, while they think they prefer to be alone, they so enjoy your company. You are always naturally maternal. When you play with friends who are younger than you, you make sure to help them up, wait for them, and hold their hand. Mommy told you to pick your birthday gift and you had no doubt what you wanted: a baby toy. You picked one with a stroller and you were the happiest little girl ever. I am sorry mommy and daddy couldn't get you the robot puppy toy you wanted. Those FurReal toys you want are pricey. Daddy asked you to choose between getting the toy puppy or getting another toy for yourself and one for your sister. You chose to get something for both of you. Daddy and I were so proud of you. She shares with you too. She has received 3 visits from the tooth fairy, and on the three occasions she bought something for her and you. I love to see that, my baby. You got new pajamas and you are willing to take turns and let your sister use your new pjs. I love your spontaneous singing. You make up more songs than mommy can recall. You sing unabashedly and at the top of your lungs. You cause us immense joy.  You have grown vastly on your anger management. Yes, my baby, you had serious anger issues. Mommy's improved health has meant she has been able to be more consistent and constant in your training. It has paid off. It has not been easy. The good thing is that you are as easily calmed as you are easily angered. You still have ways to go, my girl, but I won't give up on you. Mommy is too grateful she gets to be here and won't let that chance go to waste. You and your sister have started Bible verse memorization. Your sister is slaying it, but you are internalizing it even if you can't remember the entire verse. I love watching your love for church start growing. You finally stay with your sister in Sunday school and you are loving it. Everyone in church speak wonders of you two. You are so well behaved when you accompany mom and dad to band practice, fellowship, anywhere. You and Emmalee are my pride and joy. Mommy has been struggling with your schooling. I still can't tell if you are a lefty or a righty. You keep changing hands on me. You were a little behind in your pincer grab and strength, so mommy has been pushing you hard. I am sorry if I am a little hard on you. Mommy is strict, baby. I am so sorry. I learn from you to be soft and maternal, but I am learning. It is not natural for mom as it is to you. But that is not the last thing I will learn from you. Your kindness, sweetness, originality, creativity, and your love will continue to move and inspire me and others hopefully to see a wonderful Maker and Creator Who loves you more than anyone on this life.
I love you, my baby.