Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Charles Graduation Party

On Sunday, my baby graduated, sniffle, sniffle.  As some of you know I have a son with high functioning autism, so this was a moment filled with pride, and a long time coming.  We were so excited when Charles told us that he wanted a party.  After all the best remedy for taking the bitter, out of a bittersweet moment is a celebration :)
Here is the lawn sign, letting guests know they had arrived to the right house and what the celebration was for.  This sign was made by SugarBritchesCompany, an ETSY shop  http://www.etsy.com/listing/98259449/2012-graduation-yard-sign  I loved that it stood up to our Colorado winds :)
Here we were setting up the backdrop for the buffet table. We used 3 rolls of wrapping paper, 3 dozen balloons, and this GREAT banner that's made from felt and embroidered by SubtleSimplicity http://www.etsy.com/listing/73984512/custom-felt-embroidered-banners  I love that Charles will be able to hang it up in his room since it's fabric (not paper).  It has such a letterman vintage look to it :)
Here's a better view of the balloons as we're setting up :)
Close up of one of the banner ends, So Cute!
Here is the table as we're setting up.  Our neighbors lent us their vintage popcorn machine and I bought the cutest vintage style popcorn bags (oops, forgot to get a picture of them). I also used the popcorn bags as favor bags to send home penny candy as people left.
I used red and yellow striped paper straws and made "Congratulations" flags for them. 
I'm sorry I didn't get a better picture of them, but I made "diplomas" with piroline cookies and tied a bow with licorice strings around them.  Click on the picture to see if they show up better :)
I found the idea for these on pinterest.  They are chocolate graduation caps made with Reese's Peanut Butter Cups and Ghiradelli chocolate squares.  My mother in law piped on yellow frosting tassels and topped them with a yellow button candy.  Reese's are Charles favorite, so I knew we had to make these :)  I don't know if you can see the red "diner baskets in the back that we used for BBQ'd sliders and hot dogs :)

We served sparkling strawberry lemonade, coffee, and had a tub of sodas for everyone to drink. I used frozen whole strawberries (to keep the lemonade cold) and made ice cubes from lemonade so they wouldn't water down the flavor.  You can see some of the penny candy in this photo ( thank you dollar store :)
Here is the "Coffee Station" Plenty of French Roast coffee, sugar cubes in a ceramic berry basket, spoons in a cream pitcher, and cream in a vintage milk bottle.  Can you see Charles tassel hanging from the weighted   graduation cap in front (it's holding the vintage red and white dishtowels I used for table-coverings).
And of course, the sweetest of endings :) Vanilla and Chocolate cupcakes!  The cupcake toppers are so special they are made by SugarBritchesCompany http://www.etsy.com/listing/99812072/one-dozen-happy-graduation-2012-cupcake
She is so sweet and will work with you so you get exactly the colors and writing you want.
The Cupcake Wrappers are from AllFullofLove http://www.etsy.com/listing/89703845/printable-cupcake-wrappers-retro-polka  She will also work with you to make sure you have just the combination you want.  I know this because she really worked with me (and I really appreciate that :)
The best part of the day was when Charles came down and said " I really enjoyed the day's festivities".  It warmed my soul!  So happy graduation big guy, you are my hero!


  1. What a nice party! So happy for you and your family!

  2. How cool is this! Loved looking at all the party favors, I know it was a really great party, Congratulations!

  3. Thank you so much Colleen and Marilyn <3

  4. Thank you for sharing your pictures from Charles' graduation!! Everything came together so well!!

  5. Thank you Summer for making the great lawn sign and cupcake toppers, you are a very talented lady, I'm glad you like the post :)

  6. This is Donna Bardocz (Grandmereb Lovestobake from RWoP). Just wanted to tell you that you did a perfect job with everything you did to help make Charles special graduation Day party the best! You are a great Mom and such a special person. That is why God gave you such a special son, Charles! So happy for you and so proud for him!

  7. Dear Sweet Donna, you have touched my heart more than I can say. Thank you so much sweet friend <3

  8. Shannon- You did a fabulous job making Charles' day special. In fact, you were a key player in making this day happen..PERIOD! Congratulations to Charles for all of his hard work! We're very proud of you, Charles! Your party looked wonderful. Give your mom a kiss and a hug from me!

  9. Oh Donna, Thank you so much, we both caught our kisses and are throwing them right back at you. I feel the same way about you and your college graduate :) I can hardly wait for that day :)

  10. Sweet Shannon! You are amazing...every aspect of the party looks delightful. I'm sure Charles was thrilled by all of it and I know he felt your love. What a loving, devoted and tender mother you are and what great talent you have...energy too! You outdid yourself! Bless you, my friend and bless Charles as he continues to grow forward! HUG!!! xoxo