Navy James’ Farmer’s MarketPersonal
I cannot believe we have a TWO YEAR OLD. Navy’s first year went by so quickly, but her second felt like it flew even faster. From becoming a big sister, to potty training, and moving into her big girl bed, we’ve hit SO many milestones and she’s grown up a lot this year. She’s sweet, she’s spunky and very strong-willed … she keeps us laughing around the block.
When planning Navy’s party this year I wanted to focus on something fun, practical and easy to put together with a little DIY and creativity. Navy wanted a birthday with strawberries so after tossing around a couple ideas, I landed on a farmer’s market theme! I started planning in mid-May – collecting baskets and crates, finding local farmers to support, deciding what craft we would do, and adding the finishing touches to make it the perfect blend of fun and educational. Sharing all details on the party below!
My vision was to put on a full farmer’s market but on a smaller scale of course. My goals – kid-focused fun, sustainable, cost-effective, and to support local farmers. We rented crates and baskets from Bloomsbury Farms, a local farm (where Mad and I got married) and all the fruit and veggies were mostly sourced from local farmers, with a mix of some produce from Costco. We had fruit baskets full of oranges, mangoes, lemons, peaches, apples, and of course strawberries!! For vegetables we had lettuce, zucchini, onions, corn, okra, carrots, radishes, tomatoes, and beets. Mad and our super kind neighbor, Jeff helped build the small fruit and veggie stand that we displayed everything on. It was easy and inexpensive to assemble. They used the crates to measure for the dimensions of the stand, and used wood from Home Depot. Jeff painted it dark green with dry brush paint strokes to make it look worn. Here are similar building plans that can be adjusted for whatever design you need. Biggest tip here: keep it low to the ground and wide so multiple kiddos can “shop the market” at the same time. The kids had a blast, plus produce baskets made for great (and healthy) party favors!
For the party craft we had a “planting station” where the kiddos could plant seeds in small, 4 inch, terracotta pots to take home and grow. We had seed packets displayed in a wheelbarrow full of soil. The kids used shovels to add soil into their personalized planters and got to pick their seeds to plant. They had so much fun and with 27 kiddos digging into soil, it was surprisingly less messy than we thought it would be! Such a fun, easy and really low-cost activity!
I kept the party colors to neutral, earthy tones because the array of fruits and veggies were SO colorful! We had an amazing blush pink bounce house and ball pit from The Vlanca House Nashville, which were both a huge hit! Magari Events added some beautiful balloon cascades to the tent and bounce house which tied the colors in well and added a festive detail to the day.
We rent furniture from Mayker for all of our events – they even did our wedding! As always, they did such a beautiful job making the space feel elevated and intentional. Since we just finished the new landscaping in our front yard we wanted to host people outside and extended rentals through the house and back deck. Mayker set up outdoor lounge areas in the front yard and back deck and added dining chairs inside. What sets them apart from other rentals in Nashville is they have such unique rental options and beautiful design concepts. Their furniture is elevated and high end plus they not only rent furniture but sell their pieces as well!
Ivey Cakes went above and beyond for Navy’s first birthday cake and did it again this year! I came to them with an elaborate inspiration photo and they did an amazing job at modifying it to make Navy’s cake as close to the inspiration while staying within my budget! I wanted to do desserts without breaking the bank, and I added a “bakery” table last minute to go with the farmer’s market theme. My mom and I got up early the morning of the party and and made jumbo chocolate chip cookies together. They were a sweet, easy addition to the party.
Small bites and lunch was catered by Callie McMillin Shell. She did such a great job featuring fresh ingredients you’d find at a farmer’s market! We had tomato tarts with basil, bbq sliders with peach/mango salsa, tomato gazpacho shooters and a cold asparagus salad. She also made turkey pinwheels and really pretty fruit kebabs for the kiddos =)) She’s catered many events for us and everything she makes is so delicious!
We had the most amazing day celebrating our girl! So grateful for everyone who helped make it happen and all the family and friends that came to celebrate with us! Would love to hear how you use these ideas to setup a market for your kiddos =))