It is astounding to me that this little monkey is going to turn four years old this summer. In some ways this picture, taken on her first birthday, seems like it happened just yesterday. In other ways it seems like a world away.
Since Bella's birthday is exactly one week after Sweet Baby James is scheduled to make his entrance into the world I thought I had better get a plan in place for her party now rather than leaving it to my sleep deprived baby brain.
As soon as my kids are old enough I start the birthday planning by asking them what they would like for their party. Their idea of an ideal birthday is almost always simpler than mine and, hey, if balloons, cake and bratwurst make them feel like they've had a special celebration, that's good enough for me.
This year Bella has been influenced a bit by her party-planner-in-training older sister and has decided she wants a theme, a Polka Dot Baby Party. Her special requests are a polka-dot cake, a blue birthday bunting and, of course, as always, meat. Tiny, dainty, pretty little Isabella is a fiend for meat.
Photo courtesy of Max Sparber
Bacon burger Jucy Lucy's on the grill. Jucy Lucys are a Minneapolis specialty made by folding up a slice of American cheese and wrapping hamburger meat around the folded slices. When you bite into the burger you are met with a mouthful of molten cheese. There is absolutely nothing heathy about these to begin with, but as birthdays are a once-a-year thing I'm planning to make them with a special bacon burger mix my local butcher shop sells instead of regular hamburger. It's wrong, I know, but Bella will love them.
Image courtesy of greencolander
Grilled corn on the cob. Is there anything better in the middle of summer than grilled local corn? I'm going to talk to some neighbors who have been buying corn on the cob from a local farmer by the case and splitting the case. They apparently get a very good deal on the corn by banding together and buying in bulk. This is what I love about Nordeasters. We're practical like that.
Photo courtesy of gak.
Next up on the menu is another local classic, Old Dutch potato chips. Love these things and they are made in nearby Roseville, MN.
photo courtesy of ndis
Finally, I'm planning to make a simple white layer cake with either dots or pastel coloured non-pareils for the polka dots.
It's a simple, relatively inexpensive menu that I think Bella and our friends will really enjoy.