Last week, we celebrated the beginning of Owen’s academic journey with a school kick-off party! After all, starting preschool is kind of a big deal so I couldn’t let the occasion go by without a back to school celebration dinner (also, Target had some adorable school decorations in their dollar zone that I couldn’t resist buying).
I have to say it felt a bit weird to have a celebration for the start of the school year — I’m a summer lover and my gut reaction to “back to school” season is “UGH.” Nothing gets me down like seeing school supplies out in the stores before the 4th of July.
But I can’t stop the inevitable end of summer, so I decided to make Owen’s school year begin with a fun and special night.
My family has done such a great job building Owen’s excitement for school; his aunts, uncles and grandparents gave him books, school supplies, personalized notebooks, clothes, a backpack and lunchbox. So it was awesome to be able to spend the end of summer with our family. First, we had a movie night outside under the stars and Owen slept outside in a tent with his cousin Brooklyn. They had a grand time. Then, a few nights later we had a back to school celebration dinner with my sisters, parents and nieces and nephew.
Take a look at our dinner! I found lots of back to school celebration decorations for very little money at Target, the Dollar Tree, and Michaels Craft store.
I found a big bright green apple housewares decoration at HomeGoods for $5 and it was my inspiration for the celebration. Seriously. I pretty much planned this shindig just so I could use this apple.
And months ago I purchased the rainbow felt shape garland from the dollar zone section at Target for no reason other than it was cute and it’s impossible to leave Target without buying something unnecessary. I loved the rainbow of bright colors for a party.
Math flash cards that cost $1 made a super easy garland decoration.
I found giant clothespins in bright colors at Michaels in the dollar bins. They were perfect for place card holders; we wrote the children’s names on word strips for classrooms, which I got at the Dollar Tree in the teacher supply section.
I was so excited about the table settings. I found adorable plastic apple plates on Amazon – a great find!! I used sheets of lined primary handwriting paper for practicing writing as placemats. Glass milk bottles were decorated with bright green tassels (a 75 cent find for all 6 at Michaels!).
I also decorated the table with a red polka dot paper table runner from Michaels and scattered alphabet letter magnets and erasers.
We read Owen this book “The Night Before Preschool“:
And we ate a kid-friendly meal of tomato soup with alphabet pasta, crescent dogs with cheese, and apples, grapes and bananas with fruit dip.
Since I love pom-poms and I already had a rainbow yarn pom-pom garland from Carmendy’s monthly photos, I incorporated pom-poms into the decorations.
How cute is this apple pom-pom garland from Target? And the ABC chalkboard sign letters are also a cheap Target purchase.
It was so easy to decorate the top of jars with yarn pom-poms and fill them with colorful school supplies.
I made favors with brown bags and chalkboard labels; the bags were filled with animal crackers and peanut butter and jelly sandwich crackers.
What a great night kicking off the school year with our back to school celebration! I’m so proud of our little man.