Adeline’s 2nd Birthday: A Sesame Street Party

by jessicaturner on July 18, 2013


Last month we celebrated Adeline’s 2nd birthday with an adorable Sesame Street birthday party.

It was so much fun to plan and host. Get ready for LOTS of photos, details and links (some are affiliate links). I’d love for you to pin this post on Pinterest!

Invitations
I looked at hundreds of Sesame Street invitations on Etsy before landing on this one from Lani’s Party Designs.

Isn’t it adorable?

I had them printed at Walgreens.

Adeline’s Dress

Handmade Sesame Street Dress for Sesame Street Party
As you might have noticed, Adeline’s dress was handmade. I love, love, love the story of her dress. You see, the Big Bird portion (including the straps) was part of a set of overalls that was my sister’s in 1985. My mom kept the outfit all these years. I removed the pants portion and Angie helped me sew on a skirt with ruffle. It turned out so perfect.

Decorations
I went a little crazy with decorations. They were all so fun! :)

The big and small Elmo baskets that you’ll see in a few pictures are from when we had Elias’s Elmo birthday party. They are Easter baskets that I scored 90% off a few years ago! I was SO proud of myself.

We used the large ones for napkins and silverware and the small one pictured here for Sesame Street tattoos. I think by the end of the party Adeline had every Sesame Street character up her arms.

I also made the most adorable Sesame Street pinwheels out of used books I bought at McKays (the best used bookstore ever).  I found that older books worked better because the paperstock was thicker. (See this tutorial for how to make pinwheels. I made pinwheels for Adeline’s party last year too… it might be becoming a tradition.) I used these pinwheels in centerpieces for the tables as well as along the walk outside.

I also used the used books to make a Sesame Street paper chain garland, which we hung on the bar outside. The dispensers are from Zulily, and I was so excited to use them for the first time.

For the dining room, Matthew and I did a rainbow crepe paper wall, which was so bright and fun. I also made tissue paper pom poms, which we hung in the doorways going into the dining room.

The table was covered in a Sesame Street tablecloth. The centerpiece was a Tickle Me Elmo and some flowers with pinwheels. (More about the food below.)

For the fireplace, I made a banner using chipboard pennants that I had in my stash forever, Sesame Street paper (found at Archivers) and letter stickers. I also cut out a big letter A and number 2 out of cardboard, then covered them in Sesame Street wrapping paper from the Dollar Store. Sesame Street puppets and balloons completed the scene. (We bought a Balloon Time Helium Tank to blow up the balloons because it was way cheaper and more convenient than getting balloons at the store.)

I even worked a little Sesame Street into the bathroom with some Elmo hand soap from The Dollar Store.

Sesame Street photo backdrop
Originally I was going to do colored fabric, but when I saw this Sesame Street Background on Amazon, I just had to have it. The reviews were fabulous and I totally agree with them all. Definitely worth the $7. (The background comes in 5 plastic pieces. We only used the two big ones.) I didn’t get any wide-shots of the whole background, but thankfully Matthew snapped this one with his iphone.

After the party was over I realized we didn’t assemble a shot of all the kids, but still got tons of other cute photos, like this one of Adeline and Elias blowing bubbles after the party (Elias’s shirt is from Old Navy).

Sesame Street Visors

I made Elmo visors for Elias’s party a few years ago, so I knew I wanted to make them again for Adeline’s party. (Aren’t they so cute in their visors, three years apart?)

I made an assortment of Big Bird, Grover, Elmo and Rosita. All the pieces were hand cut. The foam pieces were attached with Aileen’s craft glue and the feathers for Big Bird and the pipe cleaner eyebrows were hot glued.

Sesame Street Visors Big Bird visor Grover visor Elmo Visor and Rosita visor

My favorite was Rosita’s glittery bow. I also liked that her visor style was scalloped. (I bought the visors at Michaels.)

They are more time-consuming than you would expect, but I worked on them a little at a time over a few weeks, so it wasn’t so bad.

Sesame Street Games
We had just a few simple games for the kids to enjoy – and boy did they enjoy them! The Big Bird and Oscar game had signs that I painted on cardboard. I simply projected an image from online onto the cardboard, traced it and painted it. I did all the outlining with puffy paint, which really made a huge difference. Loved these signs!

Big Bird’s Seed Search

This sensory activity was the hit of the party. We filled our water table with sunflower seed (some bird seed has peanut particles in it, so be careful if you have anyone with peanut allergies).  I then buried Sesame Street rings and small bubbles in the seed.

We instructed the kids that they should find one ring and one bottle of bubbles.


They had a blast finding the items, blowing bubbles, wearing the rings and throwing the seed. It was so awesome.

Cookie Monster Cookie Toss


I saw several cookie tosses on Pinterest using a cookie monster face. Originally I thought I could paint a cookie monster and make the toss, but I lucked out at Goodwill when I found this broken Elmo table at Goodwill for 2.99 (the legs were missing). It has a hole cut in the center, which made for a perfect mouth.

Elmo table painted and turned into a cookie monster toss for Sesame Street birthday party

I spray painted the whole thing blue, added eyes and a mouth, Matthew added hooks to each side and we were set! I also sewed a few cookie shaped bean bags. The kids loved tossing the cookies in Cookie Monster’s mouth.

Oscar’s Trash Can Toss

We also created an Oscar trash can toss using some tin cans + bean bags. I used my Xyron 510 to add adhesive to some Oscars from some Sesame Street wrapping paper in my stash. The kids loved the game.

Brunch Food


We did a simple brunch buffet for food – fruit and pancakes, as well as goldfish crackers for snacking.

I also made fruit trays that looked like characters from Sesame Street (Burt, Ernie and Elmo). I used cantelope and strawberries for Ernie, pineapple and oranges for Burt and watermelon and oranges for Elmo. The black was raisins and the eyes were lemons.

Cake and cupcakes

cookie monster Cake for Sesame Street party
I found a vintage Cookie Monster cake pan on Ebay that I ordered to make Adeline a Cookie Monster cake. It even came with plastic eyes and a mouth. (I still have nightmares about the red frosting from Elias’s Elmo cake and didn’t want to make it again). The Cookie Monster cake turned out adorable and Adeline loved it.

All week when we would ask what kind of party she was going to have, she would say, “Cookie Monter cake!!”

Unfortunately, when we lit the candle and started singing, she reached out her finger to touch the flame. Everyone yelled “NOOOO!” and then she cried and wouldn’t have anything to do with that cake. Poor thing.

Here’s a little 20-second video from the singing/crying :)

Since the cake was just 9 inches, I also made Sesame Street cupcakes using papers and toppers that I bought on clearance at Williams-Sonoma.


Remember my post about party planning in advance?.

Favor bags


These Sesame Street bags were adorable and perfect for favor bags.

Sesame Street favors

Inside I put a Sesame Street toy (I bought two packs and broke them apart), goldfish crackers, a small Sesame Street board book (The Dollar Store had small board books 2 for $1).

I had so much fun planning Adeline’s party and everyone seemed to really enjoy themselves. Hopefully this post helps inspire you if you are planning a Sesame Street party. :)

Let me know if you have any questions!

For more Sesame Street birthday inspiration, check out Elias’s Elmo-themed 2nd birthday and my Sesame Street Pinterest board





{ 57 comments… read them below or add one }

Karen R July 18, 2013 at 6:44 am

You’re right! That was the cutest Sesame Street Party ever!! Love all the handmade details, the time you put into the party shows! I especially love the story about Adeline’s dress, such a great idea.
I have to say, I’ve been following your blog since before Elias was born and I can’t believe what a big boy he has become! Both of your children are just beautiful!

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jessicaturner July 18, 2013 at 2:22 pm

Thanks so much. Adeline’s dress was certainly a special part of the party.

I can’t believe how big Elias is either. Thanks for reading my blog for so long. What a gift. :)

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Kate July 18, 2013 at 6:50 am

Such a cute, cute party! I love all the details and the activities are perfect. Great job!

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Kristi @ Creative Kristi July 18, 2013 at 6:53 am

This is so cute! What a score on the broken Elmo table for your Cookie Monster cookie toss! My kids cry during the singing because they don’t like everyone staring at them and singing (my oldest will be 6 next week and he didn’t cry last year for the first time). When my oldest turned one he went to dive face first in the smash cake and everyone went “awwww!” and he stopped and started crying so it’s not just he “noooo” that will get ya ;)

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jessicaturner July 18, 2013 at 2:22 pm

Yes, that was a total score! Of course, the same thing could have been done with cardboard. :) I loved it.

That’s such a cute story about your kids.

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Sarah (theGIRL) July 18, 2013 at 7:08 am

Adorable! Nice job. :)

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Julie B July 18, 2013 at 7:15 am

Fabulous! I can’t imagine how much work went into that! The sensory table and the visors are my favorites.

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jessicaturner July 18, 2013 at 2:21 pm

I loved that sensory table too. I’m totally going to do something with it for Elias’s birthday party too. The kids all loved it.

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kristina July 18, 2013 at 8:57 am

Such an adorable party! Love it!

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Jessica July 18, 2013 at 9:04 am

Gorgeous party! I wondered where the vintage Big Bird came from to make the dress–very special. The games are especially impressive!

Kate put out the candle with her finger at her first birthday party, and didn’t cry until she heard everyone’s reaction. Didn’t stop her from eating the cake, though! (Same thing with Claire’s big forehead gash last month–I guess I need to control my reactions, which are more upsetting than pain itself!)

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jessicaturner July 18, 2013 at 2:20 pm

Thanks so much. The games were all super easy to make and very frugal, which I loved. We left the water table with the bird seed out on the deck and couldn’t believe how fast all the birds and squirrels ate it. It was nearly gone in a week.

I love your girls!

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Robin July 18, 2013 at 9:31 am

D y i n g from the a d o r a b l e.

When I grow up I want to be your daughter :) .

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jessicaturner July 18, 2013 at 2:19 pm

Wish you could have been there friend. xo

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Amanda July 18, 2013 at 9:47 am

This needs to be in a magazine somewhere. Absolutely adorable! I love all of the little touches, too, like the bathroom soap. Great job, Mama!

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jessicaturner July 18, 2013 at 2:19 pm

You are too kind. Yes, I love little touches like the soap and the pinwheels.

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Cathy A. July 18, 2013 at 10:34 am

I don’t comment often on blogs but I had to tell you that I think this is truly THE cutest!! Wow…what a great job you did. Soooo stinkin’cute!

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jessicaturner July 18, 2013 at 2:18 pm

Awwww thank you! I was really tickled by it all.

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Sarah K July 18, 2013 at 10:49 am

What’s NOT to love about this? You truly are the birthday party master, Jessica.

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jessicaturner July 18, 2013 at 2:18 pm

Ha! Hardly, but I sure have fun creating a magical party.

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jennifer {studiojru} July 18, 2013 at 11:07 am

jessica… this is amazing! you thought through each and every detail. what a party! i can see how much fun the kids had! well done, friend, well done! :)

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Andrea July 18, 2013 at 12:16 pm

Was this party for you or her? Seems way over the top for a 2 year old who is way too young to remember any of it. I recall a post you did about not trying to be a Pinterest mom. This post screams the opposite, in my opinion.

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jessicaturner July 18, 2013 at 2:36 pm

Hey Andrea,

I’m sorry you have such a negative view of the party. You really hurt my feelings and I’m going to do my best to respond to your comments.

The party was definitely for Adeline – and for all the guests that came. The party was a month ago and she is still talking about it. :)

That said, if you read back on my blog over the years, you will see that I genuinely love throwing big, fun, DIY-filled parties. I love the whole process. Coming up with ideas, painting, sewing, seeing people’s reactions, etc. It is so fun – so I guess, in that regard, that makes all parties a bit for me too. Even the name of this blog indicates that some posts on here will be crafty, and I would think readers would expect a little DIY in my party posts.

You’re right, Adeline probably won’t remember most of the details, but I do believe that when she looks back on the photos, it will make her smile and remind her how loved she is. Like I said, she has been talking about it for weeks and in her life right now, the party mattered.

Regarding that Pinterest post, it was about not using Pinterest as your yardstick for what makes a good mom. I whole-heartedly believe that. There were plenty of ideas on Pinterest for Sesame Street parties that I didn’t do. Plenty of things that were incredible. But Pinterest is not my yardstick and those ideas and parties didn’t impact my perspective of Adeline’s party, which in my opinion, was super cute.

I hope this helps you to see things a little differently.

Take care,
Jessica

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Erin July 18, 2013 at 3:12 pm

Super classy, Jessica! I’ve followed your blog for a long time and watch you on the Bloom Book Club videos so I feel like I know you!! I loved seeing the pictures and I really do love all of your DIY ideas — especially how you always show your readers how to make things on a budget. Especially the A and 2 out of cardboard — what a good idea. Blessings to you!! You are really shining His light today and I’m praying for you as you share your life with us in this space.

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Julie July 18, 2013 at 3:27 pm

And thanks to your great Project LIfe albums She will remember her 2nd party through seeing the photos as prompts – so worth it!!!
Thanks for sharing your great ideas

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Vickey E. July 18, 2013 at 1:03 pm

What an adorable party! Glad everyone had fun. You wear me out with all you do, but congrats to you, Jessica. They will remember all their fun parties through your photos and scrapbooks and project life albums. You were a Pinterest mom before it even came out. Don’t worry about any negative comments — I’ve followed you for a few years now and this is just you — you love to throw a cool party and I love to see the pictures!

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jessicaturner July 18, 2013 at 2:38 pm

Ha! Thanks for your kind words. Elias’s pirate party is this weekend, so you have another fun party to look forward to. Then this mama is going to need a break! :)

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Megan July 18, 2013 at 1:58 pm

Really? Why do we have to be so negative? I really hate seeing comments like the one above. I wish that all the Mamas, and women for that matter, would praise each other when praise is due, laugh and cry together when needed, and forget the rest. What good does it do to try and make Jessica feel bad for something she obviously enjoys doing and is good at? It really bugs me. Jessica, adorable party, and I hope one negative comment doesn’t rain on your awesome party planning parade. ;)

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jessicaturner July 18, 2013 at 2:37 pm

Thanks for your kind words, Megan. They meant a great deal to me. I am all for encouraging mamas right where they are. Blessings to you.

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Sarah July 18, 2013 at 3:08 pm

Ah! I had a cookie monster cake for my 2nd birthday too. Too bad she didn’t eat any — my mother has photos of me having turned blue. That icing got everywhere.

What a wonderful party! LOVE the visors.

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Cara July 18, 2013 at 3:19 pm

Oh the negative comment:(. I must comment now that I saw that — here’s my unsolicited opinion: So what if it was just for Jessica? She clearly LOVES doing this kind of creative party, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. That being said, it totally looks like an amazing party for a 2 year old and of course Adeline’s still talking about it a month later! It is so perfect and age appropriate:)
And, Jessica, you’re right – even if she doesn’t remember all the details you do such an amazing job documenting things and she will love to look back on this. My parents rented a video camera for my second birthday which was a simple get together with one family we were super close to — I have no memories of it, and we moved from that house and state 2 months after that birthday, and therefore having that video that shows me the little details of the house, what my voice sounded like, how I reacted when everyone sang, what my parents sounded like and how they interacted with me: priceless. So even if kids don’t remember the details, seeing them in picture and video form later is SO SO meaningful.

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Andrea R. July 18, 2013 at 4:25 pm

I think the party was adorable! I also love going all out for my child’s birthday parties. In fact, we may be having a Jake the Pirate party next year, so I’m looking forward to see the great ideas you have for Elias’ party! Sorry some people have to be such Debbie Downers!

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jessicaturner July 18, 2013 at 5:06 pm

OOOOOO you are going to LOVE Elias’s party. I have had a blast putting it together and am so excited for Saturday – as is Elias. :)

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Rebecca July 18, 2013 at 4:37 pm

Oh my word – this is way too adorable! I want to try something similar for my girl this year – she is a New year’s baby. (not Sesame street, but using some of your ideas.)

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jessicaturner July 18, 2013 at 5:05 pm

Yes! So many of the ideas from this party could easily be modified for any theme. Have fun!

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Judy July 18, 2013 at 6:18 pm

So, this party seems a little extreme only if I had been planning it! Parties aren’t really my thing so I would have bought the tablecloth and backdrop, emailed out invites and bought premade cupcakes. And it would have been fine for me & mine. But as your readers, we feel like we know you, and this is absolutely nothing out of your personality. I love your attention to detail and how much joy you have throwing your kids parties. Keep being true to yourself! And I won’t use your party to measure mine against, deal? :)

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jessicaturner July 18, 2013 at 6:55 pm

ha! I go to parties like yours all the time and they are just as fun! Thanks for your kind words.

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Judy July 18, 2013 at 7:24 pm

JT replied to my comment, and AV followed it…. I. Am. In. Blog. Heaven. :)

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Ann July 18, 2013 at 6:23 pm

wow.
you. amaze.
:)

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jessicaturner July 18, 2013 at 6:57 pm

Love you.

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Jen F. July 18, 2013 at 9:35 pm

Jessica,

Everything you did for this party is so adorable. I love a theme and know you worked hard to plan it while also being frugal. Very impressive. Goves me great ideas for my daughter’s upcoming birthday later this year. Just takes planning and creativity, right? Thanks for sharing. I think you are an awesome Mom and an inspiration to other Moms. Keep doing what you love.

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shellie July 19, 2013 at 8:06 am

Holy cow. You are amazing!!! Loved it all! Between this and the circus baby shower and your instagrams of the upcoming Pirate party, I’m in awe =)

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jessicaturner July 19, 2013 at 8:54 am

And I’m tired- ha! :) It has been a fun, party-filled summer.

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Kathi July 19, 2013 at 11:10 am

Very , very cute! LOVE how you plan ahead and make things yourself and make your children and guest feel so special. Way to go little Momma, way to go!

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Jeanne DeShazer July 19, 2013 at 3:21 pm

Gee Andrea, looks like someone needs to watch Bambi again…if you can’t say something nice…in any case the party wasn’t for you. Don’t know why you even would check it out, if it’s not something you’re interested in. She is in the Blog Business after all.

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Mindy July 19, 2013 at 8:46 pm

what a fun party!! cannot wait to see all the details from the pirate party!! as for the negative comment….you know whether your daughter remembers it or not i love that you went all out. my son is 4 1/2 & autistic. he for the most part could care less about things that typical kids do & you know what that does not stop me from doing things for him. birthday parties included. we have gone all out for everyone of them even though he does not realize the party is for him & quite honestly that will not stop me :) aleline looks like she had a blast!!

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Amanda July 22, 2013 at 11:17 am

Hi Mindy,
I loved your comment. My best friend, Sarah, has a severely autistic daughter who turned 5 yesterday. Sarah often says the same thing concerning Natalie–that they are going to do the “normal” things for her and with her because it is important to do them, especially because she isn’t sure how much Natalie isn’t comprehending–that she could be understanding far more than she is able to express. Your son is blessed to have a mama like you!

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Mindy July 22, 2013 at 10:24 pm

thank you amanda :) sounds like natalie has an awesome momma too! :) we have always treated our son just like any other child. yes some things are hard, but like you said we don’t know how much he is comprehending & i don’t want him to ever think that i didn’t try for him. he may act like he doesn’t care, but deep down i know he does…. he is my everything & such i will anything i can to give him as normal of a life as possible :)

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Vonda July 25, 2013 at 9:21 am

Love love love the party and all of your attention to detail. My little guy will be one in a couple weeks and we are doing a pirate swim party… this guy loves to swim and its hot here! Whether or not the parties are somewhat for us mommas, its absolutely our right to celebrate our beautiful babies anyway we can. Cheers to us that are crafty and can go all out and cheers to the mommas that are not so crafty and do it their way. It is all in the name of love! What matters is our hearts are in the right place!

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Jessica navarro August 22, 2013 at 3:22 pm

Awesome party! Thanks so much for sharing. I am lifting many of your ideas for my daughters 2 yr party next month. Your blog post says see here for an easy pinwheel tutorial, but there doesn’t appear to be a link. Would you mind sharing it? So cute!

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jessicaturner August 30, 2013 at 5:58 am
Marcela Rivera October 12, 2013 at 11:14 am

Hey! I think one of these pictures are adorable and kinda wanted to post them on tumblr, and i wanted to know if you were comfortable with that. thanks anyways!

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jessicaturner October 13, 2013 at 1:28 pm

No, I do not give permission for these photos to be used. Thank you for asking.

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Caroline January 30, 2014 at 11:00 am

Your daughter will always remember the special parties you created and so will all the other guests. It is a wonderful gift you ate giving to your friends and family. And there’s no greater pleasure for any parent than to see your child squeal with delight. So of course you loved every minute of it. If you didn’t, you would find another way to create special times for your child.

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Kat April 22, 2014 at 4:05 am

This party was awesome!! I know it was nearly a year ago but I live in Nashville (I was shocked when I saw you linked McKays!) and if you have any left over I would totally buy it from you..especially the cookie monster toss! We are having a Sesame Street 1st Birthday for our son in August!

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jessicaturner April 22, 2014 at 8:26 pm

Sorry, I don’t have anything to loan out. You could easily make the toss out of cardboard! Have fun!

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Amanda May 2, 2014 at 8:51 pm

AMAZING party! I’m planning my son’s Sesame Street birthday party for next month and wish I had started collecting things months ago… which dollar store do you have in your area where you found all these great Sesame Street things?

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Anonymus July 16, 2014 at 7:44 am

Those are very cute ideas!!

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