- Sophie &Friends
Nothing makes this employer happier than seeing her former employees take what they learned during their tenure and make it their own. I have always been amazed by the depth and talent of my team members. To see them take wing and fly to even greater heights just makes my heart swell with pride.
Jen and Pat are a beloved couple who began working with me when they were in their teens. It’s part of Sophie World lore to tell the story of how it took me 2 months to realize that Jen was not a Sophomore in College, but in High School when she began working with us! That should give you some sense of how mature she was. 11 years later, Pat and Jen are married. She’s an R.N., he’s an Electrician, and they have the most adorable son, Gino! Happily, they still live close by, and are still an integral part of the Sophie World family!
Now, here’s where the pride part come in….
Gino just celebrated his first birthday. Jen created what will go down in history as one of the cutest one year old birthday parties ever! Her theme? Gino’s Winter “One”-derland. Okay...off the top, I just have to say that the theme alone makes me so proud. How cute is that play on words? That was just the beginning. Jen added so many amazing personal touches to her party I just had to share.
It helps that the movie “Frozen” just keeps gaining momentum in the party world, because the decor options are endless. It was a big space, and Jen knew better than to try and decorate every element of the space - she instead focused on creating special areas and highlighting them to create an overall wonderland effect.
Guests were greeted by penguins and polar bear cut-outs, which created a wonderfully whimsical feeling the moment the guests arrived. Sparkling icicles hung from the entry, and shimmering tinsel trees winked in the sun.
White helium balloons decorated with polar bear body parts completed the effect.
Jen used pictures to personalize every element of the party. There was a giant photo filled number one - and an adorable banner starting with a photo of Gino at month one, all the way through month 12.
One of my favorite elements was Jen’s chalkboard filled with fabulous facts about Gino’s first year - his favorite foods (many of which I can claim as my own - he’s a total carb boy!), books, things that he loves, his nickname, things he can do on his own, number of teeth, weight, height, and my personal favorite - color...CAMO (Pat is a big duck hunter).
The food table was decorated with silver mylar, white snowflakes, silver balls, a silver sequined tablecloth, and tiny trees made from pinecones. Continuing the color scheme, all the platters, plates, and serving dishes were either silver, white, or clear glass. Gino’s high chair was decorated to match with silver, blue, and white fabric tassels, for a boho-chic look.
Being that this was a one year old’s birthday, the main attraction for the little ones was a tiny tot zone complete with a bin of Gino’s books, play mats, toys, and a ball pit. Jen told me that many a parent commented on how it was just the right amount of entertainment for their little ones, not too overwhelming, but perfect for allowing the parents to chat while keeping a keen eye on their kiddos.
There were games for the older kids - but the primary activity was a very clever “time capsule”, which will not be opened until Gino’s 18th birthday. Guests were encouraged to write a note for the birthday boy. I hope Jen has a better memory than me...because I’m guessing in the year 2034 they will have accumulated not only a lot of memories, but a lot more boxes of stuff in their garage! I’m hoping she has a good spot to hide it!
It’s an interesting thing, watching kids turn into adults - something I have been blessed to be able to enjoy from the outside through my business, not having kids of my own. As I watch my proteges planning and executing their own parties, using the skills they learned over their tenure with me, I am about as proud as any mother could be.
I think Gino would agree, his mama created a party that “takes the cake”.