Monday, September 30, 2013

A Father-Son Campout Birthday Party

This weekend will go down, without a doubt, as one of my favorites to date. 

Because over the weekend, we celebrated Banks' 4th birthday a la a Father-Son Campout Party. Unlike years past, I wanted this year's party to be different: smaller and more intimate but still very fun and special for my little buddy. I think we succeeded based on the squeals of delight that echoed throughout the evening and the late-night flashlight wars that painted the dark. 

And now, I present Banks' 4th birthday party: 

When campers arrived, a campout sign awaited them, pointing the way to the party

There were three different tables set up on our screened in back porch. First up, the "Drink Station": 

All precious party printables made by the wonderful Nellie of nellie*design

Campers were offered "Spring Water" for earlier in the evening... well as hot chocolate, complete with camping-necessity Mason jars and striped straws for when the temperatures began to dip later in the evening.

The table was also adorned with a lantern (because every good campout includes lanterns, right?)

The second table was the "Eats and Treats" table:

"Camp Banks" bunting hung overhead the table.

And napkin rings with "4" and camping tents were ready for post-meal messes.

The menu consisted of, what else?!, but a campfire cookout! Burgers and dogs, hot off the grill, were ready for the boys and their dads...

...along with "all the fixins'" to make the grilled dinner taste just right.

And what good are burgers and dogs without "taters for the tots"?

Of course, every good campout comes with trail mix, right? In this case "Happy Trails" trail mix. :)

One of my favorite decor/food items from the party: The tackle box candy station, which included worms, acorns, and tootsie roll "logs."

And it goes without saying, that no party is complete without a yummy birthday cake. I made this cake from scratch, with love for my birthday boy:

I saw something similar on Pinterest months ago but wanted to do something different and unique for the "flame" of the campfire. As I was browsing the grocery store aisles, it hit me: fruit roll-ups! I simply molded them into a red/orange/yellow flames and used a few skewers to help them hold their shape. Twix candy bars served as the logs, chocolate sprinkles as the dirt, and red/orange/yellow gummy bears as the embers:

And finally, the "Fun and Favors" table:

The party kicked off with a nature scavenger hunt, with each camper instructed to find the items on their bag, put said items in their bag, and then use their twig pencils to check off their items. Successful scavenger hunt campers were gifted with a tasty prize: gummy fish!

Also on this table were the supplies needed for fireside s'mores, including these s'mores skewers and mini galvanized buckets (which said, "S'mores 4 Later") that I scored from the $1 bin at Target. 

Each camper was also gifted with his own pair of personalized pajamas, with the guests  given brown shirts...

All adorable jammies made by the talented Amanda of Goat & Lulu

...and the birthday boy given red.

A mini flashlight (also found in the $1 bin at Target. Thank you Tar-jay!) was included with the pajamas, which were all tied together with twine. 

And now, the most important part of the party, of course, the guests and festive fun!

Banks and Raleigh were so excited for the party to begin they could hardly stand it!

And I was one proud Momma!

As soon as the campers arrived, they, along with their dads, sent up their tents in our backyard: 

We then kicked off the party with our nature scavenger hunt.

After lots of running around, present-opening, and playing, the boys had worked up quite the appetite; so, dinner was served...

...which was followed immediately by cake!

Soon after, the boys put on their personalized pajamas...

...and little sister needed her own special "glamping" jammies, too!

Next up, fireside s'mores!

Now, it was time to burn off some of that energy! The boys absolutely LOVED the flashlights they were given. One of my favorite memories from the party was definitely  watching four very excited little boys running around our backyard, in the dark of the night, with flashlights blazing as they squealed with joy, chasing after one another, without a care in the world. Priceless. And so precious. 

Meanwhile, the dads were able to get in lots of college football watching.

Soon, it was time to call it a night, and four very happy and tired little boys retreated to their individual tents for bedtime. 

In the morning, the campers were served buttermilk pancakes with a side of fruit salad... 


...which they thoroughly enjoyed: 

We squeezed in a little more play time before the party came to an end. I'm pretty sure it was a night these campers, and their dads, won't soon forget! :)

My favorite part of the entire party, though? The moments I was able to steal, alone, with each of my babes, separately, to hold them tightly on my lap while we gazed up at a beautiful, Fall sky full of breath-taking stars as I whispered Momma secrets to each of them. Two precious moments I will never forget. 

I don't know if we'll ever be able to top Banks' 4th Birthday Party. But. We sure will try next year! Anything to celebrate this sweet boy:


  1. Oh my Gosh!
    Have I ever told you how jealous I am of your amazing creativity??
    Because you've got it!
    You have amazing skills in the party planning department.
    It looks like an amazing party!
    Hailee's 4 year old party game excitement: Who can throw the most cheeto's on the other person's Shower cap filled with mounds of shaving cream head.
    now, Banks had a fun day!
    I am sure of it.
    and that cake... wow.
    you are good!

  2. Lindsay, Banks is such a beautiful, excuse me, handsome boy...those eyes!!! Congrats on putting together what looks like a fabulous bday celebration!