Totally Radical 80s Party

Tuesday, May 6, 2014
Andrew turned 30 on Friday. He got to celebrate by working all day. I spent the day working on a super secret plan. I think it was when I attended an 80s party back in the fall at a work conference that a light bulb went off that it would be really fun to throw a surprise 80s party for Andrews big birthday.

The party planning really started coming together in the last couple months. It is not easy to plan a surprise party for your spouse. You have to be so careful of what you leave lying around, pulled up on your phone, put on the calendar, ect. I even had all the online orders for party stuff sent to a friend's business so he wouldn't see them on our porch. Thankfully Andrew doesn't snoop around in closets and cabinets too much or else he would have found boxes full of retro candy, sweat bands and leg warmers, neon paint and paper, and troll dolls....which would have been pretty hard to explain.

The plan was that Andrew would think just his family was coming over Saturday night after he got off work for a low-key birthday dinner...we had just gotten back from a cruise 48 hours prior for heavens sake. As soon as he left for work I proceeded to take P over to my in-laws for the day so I could spend the day in full on party prep mode. I didn't have to do it alone though, Adrienne spent nearly all day over here with me getting it all put together.

Everyone got here at 6 so we could get everything set and be ready to yell surprise when Andrew got home about 6:30. We really have the best friends in the whole world. I am so impressed with how much they committed to the 80s cause and got dressed up. Our neighbors probably got quite a kick out of all the 80s clad people walking down the street (since everyone had to park a little ways off).

To say Andrew was surprised would be an understatement. Perry was in Ann's arms when Andrew came in and we all started yelling. He was not a fan of the chaos and noise and people yelling at his daddy. Apparently he burst into tears and just wanted to be in his daddy's arms immediately.

After he came in and realized what was going on we sent him off to get changed. I had an outfit laid out in our room complete with acid washed jeans, a super awesome heat-sensitive color changing t-shirt and a sweat band.

Every 80s party needs a photo booth, so I set a makeshift one up in the dining room. I simply ordered a cheap, big black table cloth off of and bought some neon paints from the craft store. Then one afternoon went over to Adrienne and Chad's house and used their yard as a pain splatter zone. That was a fun project to do. Then we just hung the backdrop from the curtain rod in the room. I made sure to have some fun and 80s awesome props and set up my DSLR camera on a tripod so people could use the self-timer and someone didn't have to stand there and take pictures. I bought a remote as well...but it was acting a little we just went with the timer. I think the pictures turned out amazing. Such fun memories.

I kept the food pretty simple, just good party food like pizza and an assortment of veggies, chips and apples with dips. Finger foods are key when you don't have enough seating at tables for everyone.

To drink we had soda and green sorbet punch, sipped through crazy straws! I used to love those straws as a kid...actually I still do.

The wall art behind the dessert bar and drink station was simply covering the existing wall art with neon green wrapping paper. Super simple and cheap. For the canvases behind the drinks we added a paper "I heart 84" (the year Andrew was born) cut out with the cricut.

I love how the dessert bar came together. We had cupcakes with pac-man fondant toppers, amazing 80s themed cookies (from Telah's Cozy Cookies) and an assortment of neon and retro candy (pop rocks, nerds, rock candy, gumballs, lollipops, etc). It is hard to appreciate in the photographs but the tiered cake stand is actually made of vinyl records. : )

I wanted to add some height to the buffet in addition to the cake stand so I bought cheap candle stick holders and spray painted them lime green. The swirly lollipops are actually stuck in blocks of floral foam covered in funky tissue paper.

Of course we had to stick a fun candle in one of the cupcakes and sing the obligatory "Happy Birthday" song to Andrew.

Throughout our house there were tributes to the 80s everywhere. Troll dolls and ninja turtles were watching over us from ledges and mantles. And every frame in our living room (of which there are many) was filled with a photo of Andrew from the 80s (or early 90s...because those were equally fun and awkward).

If looking at awkward family photos were not entertainment enough, we played a quick round of 80's pop culture trivia. We worked in teams of couples and Andrew got to join any team he wanted. He joined up with Emily and Matt and they totally killed it I think getting 16 of a possible 21 points. They might have had some advantage since their collective recall of the decade was better than most other teams.

The kiddos stayed entertained with toys, photo booth props and a showing of Peter Pan in the study. Most of the little boys dressed in ninja turtles wear. We tried to get a picture of all the little turtles, and this was the best we could come up with...too many little people moving in different directions. They were so cute though! The picture in the bottom right made us all crack up. Perry picked up Daniel's sippy cup and walked over and put it in his mouth.

It was such a fun night!

Seriously we have the best family and friends ever. I am so thankful for each and every one of them, what they mean to us and how they helped make Andrew's 30th birthday extra special, i mean radical.

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