Wheels on the Bus Second Birthday Party for my little wheels on the bus song lover. Vihaan loves to listen to this song soo much that I had to download it from Itunes. “Bus” was also one of the first words he said. So the theme was the obvious choice for us.
The decoration is the heart of a themed birthday party. It sets the tone and creates the party atmosphere. When you think of birthdays, the first thing that comes to mind is balloons; I wanted a balloon-free birthday party. Vihaan is not at an age where he has a preference on how he wants his birthday to be, so there was no compromise or convincing needed to opt for eco-friendly birthday decor. Moreover, balloons are not recyclable, they will mostly end up in the ocean, and the helium used to blow up balloons is a finite resource that has experienced shortages recently.
Here are some ways I planned the wheels on the bus theme eco-friendly birthday party-
- Repurposed old backdrop.
- Chose decor that can be repurposed or made from biodegradable material.
- Reusable over disposable tableware.
- Fabric table cloth.
- Digital invitation.
- Party favors that can be reused.
[Related Post– Jungle theme Cakesmash]
Now hop on, take a seat, and ride along in our party school bus while we go through the following elements-
- A moment for my Birthday Boy
- Birthday boy Outfit
- Reusable Birthday Party Decor
- Food Table setup and menu
- Party Favors
Wheels on the Bus Second Birthday Party Decoration and Details
A moment for my Birthday Boy
It feels like just yesterday when I held my little boy in my arms for the first time, and now he has turned two years old. As a mom, this is my favorite phase; I struggled to connect to him when he was little, but now I can’t imagine my life without him. Our bond is growing stronger and stronger with him.
One of the things I’ve learned about parenting a 2-year-old is the importance of patience and flexibility. Toddlers can be unpredictable, and their moods and needs can change quickly. Adapting to their needs and responding with patience and understanding is essential. I’ve also learned to enjoy the small moments of joy and wonder that my son brings into my life every day.
I love being his little buddy, singing, dancing and hanging out with him, and cheering for him. I am also embracing and healing my inner child while enjoying being his mom or an adult.
Birthday Boy Outfit
Now let’s get into all the nitty-gritty details of the party starting with the Birthday boy outfit. Finding pretty and colorful clothes for boys is challenging. I looked high and low for a pair of yellow pants for him with no luck; then found these cute yellow shorts, floral white shirt, and a matching bow at Janie and Jack. The blazer and shoes were from his first birthday outfit.
The birthday party was on a weekend but his actual birthday was on a weekday. This was his outfit on his actual birthday. I took him to the park in the evening and took this picture. The suspender pant is soo cute, highly recommend it
Eco-friendly Wheels on the Bus Second Birthday Party Decoration
My game plan for decor was to either DIY or find plastic-free decorations and only customize the reusable decor. I am sharing tips on how I will be re-using the decor in the future below in each section.
The school bus cutout was a massive part of the decor that could make or break the look. The initial plan was to DIY the cutout, but after a quick googling, I found a Cocomelon wheel on the bus cardboard cutout at Party City for $35. It comes in 4 different heights, we got the 4 ft one. I was very relieved that I don’t have to spend hours making it; the cutout turned out sooo good.
The chances of reusing it are less than the other decor, but it’s plausible. Some of our friend’s kids are Coccomelon fans, meaning they can borrow it from us if they plan a similar theme.
[Related Post- Vihaan’s Prince theme First Birthday celebrations]
Backdrop and Street Signs
For the backdrop, we re-used the foam board we got for Vihaan’s Annaprasana ceremony decor last year and covered it with black fabric from Joan’s Fabrics. Fabric can be re-used multiple times over paper; hence, we opted for it to cover the backdrop and the cake table. Rajesh DIY’ed the legs to keep the foam board in place.
For the street signs, I got these reusable fabric stickers; they were so easy to peel and move to a different spot and of good quality. We plan to use them to decorate V’s room since he loves cars and buses. The terrible two and Happy birthday signs are made of cardstock. I used push pins to stick them to the board.
Custom Signs and Banner
I got the above custom Stop sign from Etsy for the yard or to put it near the mailbox. I am planning to reuse this every year by updating the age. You can either get a number sticker and stick it over the number 2 or DIY the age using craft paper or cardboard.
The custom name banner is my absolute favorite. It looked so good and can be reused for other birthday themes by removing the bus signs from either side.
To start with, Cake was a disaster. It was supposed to look like a bus instead looked like a truck. The baker made a small bus to compensate for that. I guess I do an excellent job of hiring the wrong vendors for our birthday parties :D, the same happened with V’s first birthday decor, which I, to date, regret outsourcing it.
The cake had cookie and cream flavor, was dry, and tasted ok, but thankfully the food was delicious, and we had another dessert option to compensate for it.
I totally forgot to take a picture of the food spread; everything was delicious. We also catered from Chopathi (the same restaurant we chose for the first birthday party). They make authentic south Indian food and never disappoint in taste and quality. Since there weren’t many kids, we didn’t do separate adult and kids menus. We just asked the caterer to keep the spice level low for all the dishes.
kids loved the appetizers.
- Gobi Manchuria
- Chillie Chicken
- Veg Biryani
- Chicken Biryani
- Paneer Butter Masala
- South Indian chicken curry
- Gulab Jamun
- Cake pops
Plates, Utensils, & Napkins
We used our own dishes and utensils- ceramic plates, stainless steel cutlery, glass drinking glasses, and dessert cups. For convenience, we went with paper napkins instead of cloth cause it wasn’t fine dining, it was more of a buffet where some guests were sitting on the dining table, and some were on the sofa. For the cake, we used appetizer plates.
The party was inside the house, right next to the playroom. I set up some toys, art, and puzzles in the playroom. Kids enjoyed grabbing what they wanted and playing with each other. More than toys, kids loved hanging around Bagheera and petting him. Bagheera is a people dog; he enjoyed all the attention and treats 🙂
[Related Post– Vihaan’s Tonsure Ceremony In USA]
We did age-appropriate gifts for this first birthday which was easier cause we had fewer kids, but this time, we had a lot more kids, so I got something the majority of age groups would enjoy – bubbles and reusable sticker books.
Along with the gifts, I added a couple of That’s it fruit bars and organic fruit-flavored lollipops. The gift bags are from Etsy.
last but not least a big thank you to all my girlfriends (now mom friends :)) for making it to the party. Some of them drove from a long distance to be there for me and V. Having friends who are like family is a blessing and very grateful for them.
Sharing all the links below for easy accessibility.
Foam board | School Bus Cardboard Cutout (4 ft) | Reusable road sign stickers | Terrible 2 and happy birthday cardstock | Custom name banner | Custom Stop sign | Black and yellow fabric from Joan Fabrics
Dinner Plates (entire collection here; ours is black; sold out everywhere except here) | Drinking Glasses | Pitcher (sold out, also love this) | Silverware | Dessert glass bowls | Vase (dried flowers here, here, and here)
Gift Bags | Bubble wands | Reusable sticker book | That’s IT fruit bar | Fruit Lollipops
V’s party Outfit- Shirt, Shorts, Bow, Blazer from his first birthday suit (similar here), Shoes
V’s actual Birthday Dress- Shirt, Suspender Pants
My dress is old from Farm Rio, available in size S here