I believe in celebrating the little things in life. I'm a cheerleader for little victories, I'm someone who revels in the day's otherwise insignificant moments (aka: my coffee was extra delicious today). Sometimes, the little things are all we have. Sometimes the little things are more important than the big things.
Sometimes, something as little as a 728 square foot apartment is worthy of celebration.......
Speaking of 728 square foot apartments, we threw a housewarming/early birthday party in ours on Saturday.
And yes I realize it's a 728 square foot apartment.
And yes I realize we don't own it, which is one of the sole purposes of throwing oneself a housewarming.
I don't care, I wanted a housewarming and a housewarming I got.
It was glorious by the way.
I started planning this party before while our apartment was still a little glimmer in our eyes. If you know me, you're not surprised by this, just like you won't be surprised when I tell you I might have overdone it.
There were five important takeaways from our Saturday celebrations that I want to share, in case you find yourself wanting to pack over 20 people in to YOUR 728 square foot apartment someday.
ONE: AIN'T NO SHAME IN THE PINTEREST GAME.
I am in no way ashamed to admit that I Pinterested the shit out of this party. I mean, the party had it's own Pinterest Board, that I started back when we lived in Atlanta for goodness sake. I went a little crazy making my vision come to life: from cocktails (Fireball Sangria, Sparkling White Peach Sangria and Watermelon Cucumber Lemonade) to decor ideas I got it all off Pinterest.....and got a lot of compliments on it too! And truthfully, it was so much fun taking the great ideas I pinned so many months ago and make them come to life.
TWO: YOU CAN NEVER OVER PREPARE...FOOD THAT IS.
Our party was from 3 - 8 PM, so I knew people would arrive hungry and expect to be fed some sort of dinner. So, I wrote out a menu that would not only be filling, but inexpensive for Kyle and I. I broke out our menu by category: apps, main dishes and desserts, then wrote out each item we would need to buy from the store. We broke the food out into servings: one serving for dinner and one serving for after people started drinking and got hungry again. Our menu was: salad with assorted dressing, chips, 2 kinds of salsa and my famous guacamole, vegetables and hummus, sandwiches and BBQ Pulled Pork Sliders on King's Hawaiian Bread. Dessert was cakepops made by Nicole of Nicole Hagy Fit and cupcakes made by my childhood friend Danielle. Everyone had plenty to eat and left full!
THREE: BE KID FRIENDLY.
Almost all our friends have kids or are having kids in the near future. Despite the fact that we live in an apartment, we wanted to make sure the party was kid-friendly so our friends wouldn't feel like they needed to rush home to relieve a sitter. We bought chicken fingers for the kids (the adults loved them, too!), had juice for them to drink and brought out the corn hole for them to play with and they all had a blast. Not only that, but our friends appreciated being able to bring their kids and loved that we were so prepared for them! All in all, we had 6 kids in attendance, ranging from 7 weeks to 12 years old....and all of them loved Auntie Ashten and Uncle Kyle's house!
FOUR: ADD PERSONAL TOUCHES.
Above all, we wanted the party to "feel" like us. So, we added little personal touches were we could: I made my famous guacamole, Kyle made a playlist, we bought an address book and asked our friends to fill out their addresses for us. We also gave everyone candles to take home, thanking them for warming our home and telling them to now "warm theirs". It was a fun, creative way to make our party memorable and make it very "Ashten and Kyle".
FIVE: YOU CAN THROW A GREAT PARTY ON A BUDGET.
We all know I'm a baller on a budget (see this post). We wanted to have a great party, but not spend a lot of money. We bought all our food/booze in bulk at CostCo (we have some leftover for meals this week, winning!), bought our cute decor from Target and used the Cartwheel App to get discounts on all of it. I even bought all the serving trays and vases you see I this photo at the thrift store (except the white vegetable tray, I got that at Target for $10 on sale) for less than $50!
After this weekend I’m a little emotional. Like, emotional in a good way. Like, my heart is overflowing just like my coffee cup was come Monday morning because I was so tired from the weekend’s events. My cup runneth over, literally and figuratively you could say. It was a weekend filled with love, laughter and new life (my friends Jenna and Rachel gave birth over the weekend!). Kyle and I are still talking about how much fun it was and how amazing it was to have most of our friends in the same place. It might have been the celebration of something small but to us it was the party of the year!