What’s this? An adult birthday party for once?!
I will admit that I was not keen at all when my husband first suggested the idea of me planning him a 40th Birthday party. I go all out when it comes to my kids parties, but I have tried to plan parties for my husband in the past and have had minimal success getting even a few people to show up. I was filled with dread that this party would be another big flop, but because it was a milestone birthday and he actually requested a party, I reluctantly picked a date and set to designing an online invitation to send out.
Once we started to get some RSVP’s, I finally started to get excited about moving to the fun parts of the party planning – the food and decorations!
To decorate, I went with a mix of pre-made decorations from the party store combined with printables I designed myself. I went with a red, black and gold color scheme based off the suits in the playing cards. All the club, spade, diamond and heart shapes were hand cut from dollar store posterboard with love.
For my food and bar tablecloth’s, I found some great red and black printed camp blankets that were on sale for $5 each. Similarly, we needed table coverings for the poker tables and I ended up getting $3 fleece blankets that my mother in law graciously sewed together to make the correct size. Sometimes you need to get a bit creative and think outside the box.
For food, I tried to stick to appetizer type pub foods that would go well with beer or other adult beverages. Our menu included barbequed dry ribs and chicken wings, a warm B.L.T. dip with red and white tortilla chips, salsa and guacamole, crabmeat dip and ripple chips, cut veggies, fruit, pepperoni sticks, brownie bites, cheesecake cups and soft pretzels.
I also came across the idea of a soft pretzel bar on pinterest, and immediately knew it would be perfect for the party. To keep things easy on myself, I sourced out the delicious soft pretzels from local Edmonton bakery Artistic Bakeshop and served alongside homemade Beer Cheese and two types of mustard.
Instead of traditional cake, I kept things super simple with no-bake Rice Krispie Treat and Puffed Wheat Squares. I formed my treats in round cake pans and, with the help of a bit of buttercream and sprinkles, stacked them to look like an impressive layered cake. I love this style of “cake” because it is so much more solid which makes it easy to stack and decorate.
I wasn’t sure whether adding a candy buffet would seem too kiddish, but decided to go with it anyway knowing my children would be at the party and would happily help with any leftovers. It was definitely a hit with the “big kids” and there wasn’t much left at the end of the night!
Above the candy buffet hung a “Back in 1979” print I designed as a surprise for my husband. It included fun facts about everything happening the year he was born. To print it out, I cleverly sent it to Staples as an architectural print and it was less then $3 for the oversized piece to fit into a frame we already owned.
Our initial vision was to have the poker tables and bar set-up outside, but rainy weather meant having to come up with a plan B and try to fit the rented tables and chairs all in our upstairs bonus room. It was a tight fit, but we made it work.
I forgot to get a nice clean set-up picture beforehand, but this after shot gives an idea of how we made it all work!
All in all, it turned out way better then I could have anticipated. Even with having to revise our plans and figure out a way to move everything inside, we were able to make it work and have a fun evening of poker.
And even though it was his own party, I leaned more heavily on my husband to be involved with the planning and decision making – especially when it came to planning out the whole poker playing side of things. Usually I am happy to take the reigns on a parties, but it was nice to work as more of a team for once.
Happy 40th Birthday Curtis!