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Sweet Sixteen (almost)

My newest adventure is to plan a Sweet Sixteen party for my firstborn. It’s hard for me to imagine she’s going to be sixteen already. In fact, the first day I sat down and started pinning ideas, I cried most of the day.

The deal we made was that I get full planning privileges over this party, and when she gets married later, I promise not to interfere and will only help when asked. Because I didn’t get a Sweet Sixteen party, I admit I’m living vicariously through her. I wanted a fancy party with me in a pink dress and white gloves, with dancing and walking in on my father’s arm. I didn’t get that, but she will.

I guess the best way to explain it is what I’ve already told others. I’m going to be throwing a Quinceneara for a white kid. I don’t speak much Spanish and while I do have partly Hispanic children, she’s not one of them. But that’s where we’re going with it, except she’ll be sixteen instead of fifteen. I’ve never seen that My Super Sweet Sixteen show, and I know what I can afford to do wouldn’t compare but in our world, it’s kind of like that.

So now that you know where I’m going with it, I can proceed with the details.

After much thinking and measuring and debating, along with a few calls and emails, I managed to find a venue that happens to be like four doors down from my house and she’s only charging me $30 for the use of the restaurant, not including whatever our food comes to. She doesn’t have the ability to cook a seven course meal for forty people but I’m okay with meat and cheese trays. I’ll be watching her specials to see what she comes up with between now and then. For instance, she has a pulled pork dinner that has potatoes and carrots and a roll or something and that’s $6.95. We probably wouldn’t do that one, but a dinner like that, in that price range wouldn’t be bad. Otherwise, like I said, meat and cheese trays and some salads or something would be fine. I guess in that sense, it’s kind of country chic but whatever. Our friends and family are just happy to have a meal that tastes good. They don’t need top dollar meals.

There isn’t an actual parking lot, but it’s a Saturday afternoon when all of the businesses on our street will be closed and people can park down the side street, too. It should be fine. Even though we’re looking at about 40 people for the first party, many of them will be more than one person to a car.

The down side is that the cafe is a tad small so we had to cut the guest list in half. However, since we live right down the street, we can invite her school chums over after the formal party and they can have a dance. She’ll have her closest friends at “the” party but everyone else can come later. It made it easy to cut the list that way. Just have another party!

So that means I’m essentially planning two parties but I’m okay with that. I have more ideas than I can fit in one party anyway and I won’t have another sixteen year old girl for five years after that.

Back to the first party:

This is my cake inspiration. The stripes will be pink and the roses will be fondant. I’m probably only going to do two tiers. The stripes will be on the bottom and the solid white will be the top one, but that second stripe of smaller beads on the second tier won’t be there. I might make a couple of fondant music notes to prop up there. Husband is going to make a cake topper that looks like a music staff with a cleft and the numbers 1 and 6 on it. (If he puts it off too long, I’ll just put fondant roses on top, but the music notes would still give it a bit of personality.)

We’re going to get satin table covers in fuchsia and then cloth napkins in pink. I’d like to have water glasses and carafes on the tables too, but I’m not sure yet. I’ll be folding the napkins into a folder type fold and tucking a poem about growing up in each one. Then each place setting will have a tealight in a little tealight holder (most likely dark pink) that will act as the favor, and then whatever the centerpiece is. I’m leaning toward artificial flowers.

Her dress is still waiting on word from someone else, but I believe I found mine on ebay. It’s a burgundy strapless dress. We’ll see if I win. Hers most likely won’t be pink but it won’t clash either. She’ll need elbow length gloves and shoes still.

I found an adorable idea for a card box that looks like a boombox. I’ll have to figure out how to put that one together later. The placecards will be ovals with a ribbon pulled through the back and trimmed so it looks like a piece of candy. Then I’ll either have the guests sign stones that she’ll keep in a container on her dresser or a mat for a photo. I’m leaning toward the latter.

We’re going to have a sweet sixteen ceremony, as well, at the dinner. She’ll be brought in to Sixteen Candles, and then when we do the candle lighting ceremony, she’ll do the changing of the shoes from flats to heels and then dance to Then They Do by Trace Atkins with Hubby. I intend to have paper napkins near the cake. Those in attendance may want to make sure they have a stack for this. Then they should hand that stack to me as I openly weep and get another one for themselves.

Once that party is over and we’ve cleaned up, we’ll head back home for the dance party. Anyone from the first party will be welcome to come dance around at the second but I imagine those without kids would rather head home. I’ll be using an ipod for the music because it is still my house and a deejay would be a bit much. We’re going to have a candy buffet, pink punch, and cupcakes. The cupcakes will be in zebra print liners and they’ll have bright pink frosting and black bows.

I’m still thinking over the lighting but the dancing will be in what is typically the toy room. I’m thinking about Japanese lanterns and white Christmas lights across the ceiling but I don’t know how that will work so we’ll see. I need to get a curtain for that room, but I need to do that anyway. Between now and then, I’ll have to download enough music to last a couple of hours and make kids her age happy, and I’ll also have to figure out what she’ll wear, since I’m going to assume she won’t want to wear a formal ballgown for that.

I also want to get some chair covers and sashes for my dining room chairs to make them more “themed”. I can probably just make that. I’ll use a coupon for Joann Fabrics and get some muslin and then get the satin for the sashes when it goes on sale.

I think I have pretty much everything planned in my head. Now I just have to start making purchases. Our taxes should be in within a couple of weeks so we’ll start then. I won’t be able to pay for the food right away but I can get everything else and store it on the porch. I’ll probably keep any candles in the closet so they don’t melt but everything else can go out there.

Expect to hear a lot more about this in the coming months, and expect me to be completely lost after September first, because it’s going to be like planning a wedding and then not having anything to plan. Good thing Christmas comes a few months later. I can just dive into that!

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  1. January 27, 2012 at 7:06 pm

    oh freaking seriously, now I’m crying damn you

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