Sunday, June 9, 2013

Our Anti-Pinterest Redneck Party

Ellie says "lets get this ho-down started!"
Pinterest. You dirty little time sucking, unattainable idea giving, too perfect for my life, virtual pin board. I'm mad at you, Pinterest.  I have spent hours pinning all of your wonderful ideas and have yet to try anything you have shown me. You make me feel like a bad mom, horrible party thrower and lousy cook.  I just can't live up to your expectations, so you know what? I give up. I'm giving up on you.  

OK that's a little harsh. I know I won't give it up, I love that site, and the ideas within it. I'm kind of addicted to it actually. I just know that for me, at this time in my crazy life, I just can't live up to my self-inflicted Pinterest expectations.  So this year I decided to throw an anti-Pinterest Redneck party for our boys. And I have to say, it ended up pretty awesome.

Now that I'm working full time and the mama of 3 kids, I was dreading the idea of throwing our boy's joint birthday party. I have been stretched thin time-wise and can't even keep up on my laundry. The idea of cleaning and prepping and shopping was too much for me to even think about. What theme will it be? What should I do for the favors? Do we do it in the middle of the day so we don't have to serve dinner? Heck no! As I was putting together my thoughts I asked the boys what kind of party they wanted this year.  "I want to have a guys night, only boys can come, we can hang out with dad.. drink some beers" my almost 6 year old Will tells me.  He knows he's being inappropriate but will risk getting in trouble to get a laugh out of us (and it usually works.)  "Ummmm, let's see... I want a purple and pink princess party, and only girls can come" says my almost 4 year old son Luke. OK so how do we combine princesses and a dude party? This should be interesting.

Our wonderful family friend asked if we wanted her to bring her ponies to the boy's party, and that was an easy choice (awesome!) So cowboys and Indians theme?  Maybe a farm party? Hmm. Just as I was trying to decide, Jesse came home with a craigslist purchase. He was the proud new owner of a 3-wheeled early 1960's rusty old Cushman. Our neighbor saw him driving around the property and said that we just "upped the white trash factor in our neighborhood by a point".  Ponies. White trash. A dirty house. I got it! A hillbilly party!

I ran to the dollar store and picked up billy bob teeth, squirt guns, candy, and funny glasses to give out as favors. Easy and cheap just like our party ;-) Even the pack of brown paper sacks were from the dollar store. I love that place!

We pulled out our outdoor furniture from last summer and it was dirty and needed a good scrub down. As my mom was helping me wipe down chairs she said "good enough, this is a hillbilly party, remember?" Ahh, this theme is really working for me.  I barely cleaned our house and normally I'm panicked with the thought of people seeing my clutter and dirty floors. But this time it was different. I didn't have the time to worry about it, and I finally allowed myself to let it be. And it felt GOOOOD. 

I shopped the night before the party at Costco with Will in tow as Jess was busy outside doing yard clean-up.  We picked up the burgers, dogs, fixins, a packaged salad that just had to be thrown together, some frozen corn, bowl of fruit already cut up, and lots of beverages.  My mom made her amazing bootlegger beans and tater salad and my mom-in-law made her world famous cookies. Which I must say some sneaky older brothers stole on their way out the door (someone saw them feverishly stuffing snickerdoodles into gallon-sized ziplocks right before they left!) My awesome sis-in-law made the yummy cupcakes. We also had hillbilly inspired cocktails for the big kids at the party.  All in all, it was easy peasy.  In all the years of throwing parties at our house, it was the first time I ever was able to sit down and relax and talk to everyone. I would have to say it was my most favorite party yet, and was the least amount of work! I love that having three kids is in some crazy way making my life a lot easier. Is that even possible? It's interesting how life works itself out, isn't it?

So next year I am going to go with some sort of party theme that can be translated into easy again.  My mom suggested a camping theme. Tents, s'mores, camp fire, dirt... yep! Totally doing it!

And I also need to give a shout out to my family and friends who DO throw Pinterest-worthy parties. I am the proud friend, sister, daughter-in-law, and daughter who gets to be inspired by those in my life who are so amazing.  I love the creativity and fun that goes into the parties they throw, and by me being anti-Pinterest I'm in no way saying I don't like what they do. I LOVE what they do, and I often tell them they should start blogs or websites showing off their amazing ideas. I totally mean it! They are so stinking good at at it! I am so glad I have them share their party tips and they are always there to offer ways to make my parties great but in a way that works for our lifestyle. 

Lastly, I wanted to talk about Will's #1 most favorite singer in the world, Jason Aldean. He has been listening to him since he was 2 and pretty much knows every one of his songs by heart.  He's coming in September so we jumped on the chance to take Will and Luke to their first concert. It's going to be just the four of us. One of the grandmas will be watching Ellie for us that night :)  They are super excited, especially since it's a school night (what rebels!)  I have to share Will's most favorite Jason Aldean song. When we play it in our car I always look in the rear view  mirror at him, I can literally see his heart melting when it comes on. It's so cute and he knows it word for word. We sing it together at night before bed too.  And sometimes when I'm alone in my car and I hear it, it makes me squirt a tear or three.

Heaven - Jason Aldean

And below are just a bunch of photos of some of my favorite faces from the party. :-)