American Girl Birthday

 Ahhhhhh!  We had the best birthday party e-ver!
This year, we changed things around with birthday parties.  My kids have always had a family party (because we have such a nice big family) and then last year, Kensington really wanted a friend party, so we invited girls from her school to a second party.  And this year, we decided to strike all of it and let the kids pick one type of party and that’s it.  They could have a friend party or a family party but not both.  Well, all Kensington said she wanted to do was go to the American Girl store with Ebby Lee.  That’s it.  That’s all she wanted to do.  So, we made that into her party and it was  HUGE success!  She got exactly what she wanted and was such a happy girl. 
This was the three girls after we spent an hour inside the store getting all three loot for their dolls. Let’s face it…it was more a party for the dolls than the girls :).  The dolls walked away with all new clothes, a pet each, their ears pierced and even a bathtub!  The dolls really scored at this party ;).

 My friend Amy made a sign to go along with our theme this year.  We put it out on Friday morning and kept it up all weekend.  Isn’t it fabulous?!?

 Look at the detail!  I asked Amy (like I always do!) if I could share her info and she declined.  She likes just making signs for close friends and family.  Here is our sign wall…

…and there are even five other signs not shown in this picture!  We have quite the collection!

My friend Emily made us cupcakes to go along with the sign :).  Emily is an artist too!  Look at the beret on those cookies!  We took the cupcakes with us and picked up the girls after school and drove straight to Dallas to visit the American Girl store. 

Our favorite girls met us there :).  My mom, my grandmother and my sister-in-law.  I couldn’t have asked for a better bunch of ladies to go with us.

These sweet girls had such a good time together and they were both so sweet!!  Please note that Kensington matched her Grace doll on purpose…she was super pumped about this ;).

We took both of their dolls upstairs to the salon and had their ears pierced ;).

I love this picture.  Andrew is “on the phone” with Ashby.  Do you see Andrew and my dad laughing on one side?  And then Catherine on the other?  I loved looking over and seeing these three people laughing and playing with our sweet girl.  I don’t know if I’ll ever really get over the fact that once upon a time, Ashby was abandoned in a box in China…and now, she’s in the American Girl store being fawned over by three people who love her so much.  It catches my breath every time.  God is just so good.

We came. We saw. We shopped. We conquered.  Now, we were ready to eat.  We all walked over and ate dinner together at the restaurant next door.

After dinner, the wait staff brought out Kensington’s cupcakes and we sang.

The face of a girl who had the party she wanted.
It was such a special day :).
Alright, speaking of Kensington…when I made this supper right here…
…she had THREE helpings!  Three!  She told me this was her new favorite meal.  My Sloppy Joe Pot Pies for the win.  You should make them too.  Recipe here.
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  • Kimberly September 16, 2015 at 9:42 am

    I love this! Looks like such a fun birthday party, and it is so nice that your family joined in! I had no idea that they made so many things for the American Girl dolls … earrings and bathtubs! I remember the days of just Kirsten, Samantha and Molly! 🙂 Also, those cupcakes are amazing! Happy Birthday, Kensington!

    Very European

  • Johannah September 16, 2015 at 10:17 am

    What a great birthday!!! There is nothing better than American girl dolls, and of course the store!

  • Sheaffer {Pinterest Told Me To} September 16, 2015 at 10:37 am

    That sounds like the perfect party for K…it also sounds like the perfect party for ME to throw! I'm going to run it by Carter for next year. :0 Just kidding. But it would be nice.

  • Tara G. September 16, 2015 at 10:43 am

    What a perfect outing/party! I'm glad the people had fun, too! 🙂

  • Mama Of Boys September 16, 2015 at 10:45 am

    What a fun birthday, and exactly what she wished for. Great memories for you all x

  • kimm atwood September 16, 2015 at 11:23 am

    What a great birthday!

  • Erika Slaughter September 16, 2015 at 11:24 am

    Ebby Lee had the best time at that party! She's still talking about it!!! And changing her dolls clothes constantly! I'm so glad Kensington had a great night!

  • Andrea Terrell September 16, 2015 at 11:26 am

    That store is a blessing and a curse all at once. We did a party there a cooler of years ago but ate there. It was so cute as they brought out places and cups for the dolls too.

  • Andrea Terrell September 16, 2015 at 11:26 am

    Oops couple of years ago I meant.

  • Valerie Cox September 16, 2015 at 11:42 am

    As a child, I love American Girl dolls, and I had Samantha. I loved wearing matching outfits with her!

  • September 16, 2015 at 12:41 pm

    soo fun.. I love their faces.. pure delight ☺

  • Laura September 16, 2015 at 1:08 pm

    What an awesome birthday!

  • Happylife38 September 16, 2015 at 1:10 pm

    Love it all!! Love the sign, love the cupcakes, love the matching clothes, love the happy smiles, love the "phone-call" with Ashby~ love it all!!! Awesome birthday. It was my 40th bday on Sept 8th, and oooooh to be 7 again and to have an American Girl store. I would have loved that, and I'm sure all the adult girls are with me on that :-)!! Great party, Shay!!!! You have amazingly creative friends and such a sweet family also. Bless you all!!

  • Melissa September 16, 2015 at 1:44 pm

    It is obvious by the pictures all the girls had so much fun and I think the whole outing looks perfect. So glad Kensington had such a fun day!

  • TorontoSAM September 16, 2015 at 1:51 pm

    Looks like a happy day for all. I love that even though we try to go all out for our kids with big parties and lots of guests, they really do enjoy simplicity. (Says the person who is currently planning her son's 4th birthday party and is already up to 8 guests and their parents!)

  • Kelsey @ The Peacock Roost September 16, 2015 at 1:54 pm

    What an awesome birthday! You can tell by Kensington's smiles in all the pictures that she was so happy! I love her birthday sign & cupcakes. I think you all gave her the perfect party 🙂

  • Melanie Lien September 16, 2015 at 2:12 pm

    I love this! Happy birthday K!

  • Marty September 16, 2015 at 2:16 pm

    " I don't know if I'll ever really get over the fact that once upon a time, Ashby was abandoned in a box in China…and now, she's in the American Girl store being fawned over by three people who love her so much." This statement takes my breath away. Chosen…wanted…redeemed. Makes me think of these words, "How deep the Father's love for us…" Love this post so much! Blessings to your family.

  • Jennifer September 16, 2015 at 2:16 pm

    Aww, looks like she had a great birthday! Happy birthday, Kensington!

  • Mary Dollar September 16, 2015 at 2:54 pm

    Such a fun party!!!

  • Adrienne McManus September 16, 2015 at 4:11 pm

    What a fun outing/party! My son did something similar for his sixth birthday-he had a sleepover with his cousin and we took the two of them to the Lego store. Can't wait for my daughter to be old enough for an American Girl party! ?

  • Chelsea @ Married Filing Jointly September 16, 2015 at 4:42 pm

    Amazing. I love the idea of giving your child an experience or a party. Such a fantastic idea.

  • Leigh Clark September 16, 2015 at 6:01 pm

    What a FUN day! Her smile is priceless – you did great mama!!

  • kelly September 16, 2015 at 6:47 pm

    The sign is fantastic and the American Girl party looked delightful! Wish I could've come! I love ALL things American Girl Doll !

  • Not A Mom September 16, 2015 at 7:49 pm

    That totally sounds like the kind of party I would've asked for at that age! Pinning this because those signs are adorable and I love that you kept them on a wall in your house. Also, pinned the sloppy joes idea!

    Linds @ Not A Mom

  • Megan September 16, 2015 at 7:51 pm

    That looks like so much fun!! Wonder if Austim will host my 30th bday at the American girl store?!

  • Maya Scheibal September 16, 2015 at 8:10 pm

    Kensington is so adorable. Such a sweet party!!

  • Violet September 16, 2015 at 8:20 pm

    Hi Shay!
    Would love a back to school / fall / September day in the life post! Such a cute party your daughters are beautiful.
    – Violet

  • Beautifully Seaside // Formerly Chic Coastal Living September 16, 2015 at 9:15 pm

    Love those birthday signs and I have to say that party seems like the best ever! What fun! Can you please ship me one of those cupcakes? They look delicious! Happy Birthday Kensignton, all the way from sunny Miami, Florida! XOXOX

  • Paula September 16, 2015 at 10:01 pm

    Priceless! I have 3 daughters. One, the oldest that is special needs. She is both physically and mentally is impared. I know my twins, 3 years later, are gift in so many ways. But especially to enjoy these "girlie" trips some day.

  • Elizabeth Birenbaum September 16, 2015 at 10:18 pm

    Love love love her sign (and your sign wall!). And the American Girl store sounds like SUCH a fun way to spend her birthday! She looks so happy and seems like she had the best time! She's a girl who knows what she wants 🙂

  • Loni "The Healthie Foodie" September 16, 2015 at 10:45 pm

    Dear Kensington,

    I hope you had wonderful day with your mama, Aunti Catherine, Ashby, Lovey and great-grandmother. It sure seems like it was all about the American girls in your life. Wishing you another year of yummy treats, happy times with your brother and sister and wonderful year in 1st grade. You have wonderful mama who shares so many wonderful and lovely stories about you! (And a wonderful uncle and aunt 🙂 !

    Happy Birthday!

  • Jeanie September 16, 2015 at 10:58 pm

    She is bursting with happiness!

  • Maydelin September 16, 2015 at 11:50 pm

    wow that looks like a fantastic Birthday Party!!!

  • Kate September 17, 2015 at 4:04 pm

    Such a fantastic party!!! Looked like a BLAST!!! And I'll tell you that it catches my breath every time I think how Ashby was blessed with a family like yours. Precious. xx

  • AG September 17, 2015 at 5:17 pm

    Catherine is so pretty and petite!

  • Jaren September 18, 2015 at 2:24 pm

    Oh my goodness! That looks like so much fun! We plan on making the trip to Houston soon!