Saturday was my mother’s 70th birthday and Tuesday will be my step-sister’s 60th birthday. So this weekend, we hosted a joint birthday celebration for them. Our theme was the TV classic, This Is Your Life. On the show, the host holds a red and gold book and from that, I took our color scheme.
We hosted the party in the clubhouse of my parents’ subdivision so we could just wheel my dad up from their house. (That is much easier on him these days that getting in and out of a car.) Outside the clubhouse, I added wreaths to the double doors. One read “Happy Birthday” and the other had my mother’s and sister’s names. (See the wreath tutorial here.) I flanked the entrance with red and gold balloons.
Here is my dad’s arrival. We also were hoping that my dad would remember the show (it ran from 1952 to 61). He has Alzheimer’s and lives very much in the moment now, but he does still recall distant things. Only a few weeks past his month-long hospitalization, he dozed through most of the party, but I like to think he would have enjoyed things if he’d been feeling better.
This Is Your Life
This is a theme you could easily recreate for any adult with a milestone birthday. If you don’t know the show, the host would surprise a guest with people from their past who would relay funny and touching stories about the guest. That sounded just right for this celebration.
I decorated the mantle with bunting made from photos of my sister and mom, trying to hit their major milestones. I used the large black frame from my Nancy Drew Mystery Party to create a large version of the This Is Your Life book from the show. “This Is Your Life” was cut from gold glitter paper using my Silhouette.
In front of the mantle, I arranged chairs for my mom and sister, then added a little table with the book (find cardboard book forms at Jo-Anns) that I painted and roses.
To make everything easier, we had the party catered. Coast2Coast Catering & Events did just an amazing job. All the food was so delicious and Gerard was so flexible in working with me to continue our concept through the table settings. It was really a wonderful experience and if you are in north Georgia, I would highly recommend them.
We started with a wine and cheese course, which was perfect for nibbling on during our presentation of This Is Your Life.
My brother played the part of show host Ralph Edwards, introducing each “surprise” guest. Of course, none of us really came as a surprise, but I did set up a portable clothing rack with red curtains, for guests to emerge from, just like on the show.
My sister’s boys are in Texas and New York, so they joined us by Facetime — which was our only true surprise and a wonderful one.
Our dinner was Gerard salad, Havarti chicken, roasted potatoes, rolls, and grilled vegetables. It was all so good, and even my husband, who is a picky eater, complimented the meal.
Gerard and I worked together on the tables. He provided our beautiful flowers: white hydrangeas and red roses in a modern glass vase. Since I am no whiz with flowers, I love what he did. I selected the white linens, then added gold chargers, my own collection of red Spode dinner plates and my red glass salad plates. (You also saw the red plates in my Wizard of Oz party.)
One of my favorite details is the “gold” bangles I used around the napkins. These were 18 for $5 at WalMart.
The other favorite was using childhood photos of each guest as a placecard. I just printed these at home and propped them up on $0.99 photo easels from Tuesday Morning.
Gerard also made our cake: my father’s selection of a triple layer chocolate cake. I added mini bunting with the birthdays, 70 & 60.
Sweet Goosie Girl made our party favors: her signature cookies, half with 70 and half with 60. The numbers were in glittered gold, which was perfect for our party color scheme. I just added some roses and “thank you” bunting to a sideboard and we had an instant favor area.
Party styling and photography: Double the Fun Parties
Catering: Coast2Coast Catering & Events
Cookies: Sweet Goosie Girl