Formerly 29: Jordan's Epic Surprise 30th Birthday Party

7.17.2015

Jordan's and my birthdays are one week apart. Mine is July 10; his is July 17.... today! 

This year, he turns 30! I love birthdays and birthday celebrations, so I decided I didn't have enough to do and I should plan an epic surprise party for him. It went down last Saturday!

I planned it for over two months. I mailed out invitations, crafted a Happy Birthday banner, bought food, and planned games! I also lied a LOT. It's kind of scary how well you can lie if you really put your mind to it.
There ended up being close to 40 people at the party, and I honestly can't believe no one spilled the beans! Jordan was completely and utterly shocked, and it was awesome. Everything I planned went according to plan, and he was none the wiser until he walked around the corner into the backyard at his parents' house and about fell over when he saw everyone there. He thought we were on our way to a Sunday school class party and he was just stopping really quick to help his dad move something in the backyard. Lies!

This might be the last surprise party I ever throw, because they are stressful! But at least my one and only will have been an epic success.
I have my sister-in-law to thank for taking all of these pictures! And my family and Jordan's parents really helped out a lot with setting everything up. I could NOT have done it without them.
The main food was a nacho bar ("macho bar") and BBQ chicken sliders in the crock-pot (super easy). For dessert we had cookies, brownies, and root beer floats! I got mustache napkins and straw from Hobby Lobby and kind of went with a mustache theme of sorts.
Erin posted about using trivia cards at the high school reunion party she planned, and I thought that was such a fun idea! I put together a 15-question trivia game with questions about the decade of the '80s and some specific questions about Jordan like when was his original due date, how much did he weigh, etc. Near the end of the party, I went through the answers, and there was a prize for the winner!
I was pretty proud of my "Pin the Mustache" game. I printed out a 24x36 picture from Staples for $3.89 (who knew?!) and got mustache cutouts for people to play a fun version of "Pin the Tail on the Donkey." My sister-in-law made this cute sign for the game. Seriously, that girl needs to be a party planner. She's the same one who organized a Bingo game for her wedding reception.
Jordan loves brownies, so instead of a cake he blew out candles on the brownie. Then we also had the root beer floats. His mom dug out some of Jordan's old stuff from the attic and used it as decorations. We also put some home videos on the TV inside for people to watch if they wanted to sit inside out of the heat.
My whole family drove up from Texas to be there, and Jordan was surprised to see everyone! I posted this picture on Facebook, and a few people thought we were saying Baby Bum is actually a boy, so don't be confused. She's still a girl.

^^^ Superman is Jordan's favorite superhero. I saw this Happy Birthday banner on Etsy for $25 and thought, hey I can make that myself. I bought paper for $2 at Hobby Lobby and put together the banner, and I love how it turned out!
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I was stressed out about how everything would go, but it went very well and was so much fun! I'm glad I could do something to celebrate Jordan's 30th, and I'm glad he loved his party. I feel so thankful for all our wonderful friends who came out and celebrated with us and kept my secret so well!


Have you ever thrown a surprise party?

34 comments:

  1. It all looks so fun and a nacho bar is something I will now be dreaming of!

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  2. that's so much fun! I bet he loved it. Everyone looked to be having great fun. I especially love the pin the mustache board! So cheap and I bet it brought a lot of laughs!

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  3. What a fun surprise! You did great, Amanda! Like you said, surprise parties are really stressful to organize, but this one turned out perfectly until the very end (start). :)

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  4. This is awesome! Great job! Everything looks like a lot of fun, and the food looks delicious! I haven't thrown any surprise parties...yet. But my siblings and I keep joking about pulling one on each other...

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  5. what an awesome party :) glad it turned out so well & that so many people were able to come!

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  6. This is awesome! I'm glad he was so surprised. I've never thrown a surprise party, and I'm not sure I want to! They do seem like a lot of sneaky work. My sister-in-law was pretty stressed out about all the lying she did to hid my brother's party from him back in May. I thought it was still really fun though! Happy Birthday to Jordan!

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  7. Tha banner really did turn out well! I'd have butchered it. Lol.
    And no. I could probably never throw a surprise party because I absolutely, positively cannot lie. Not a bit. And I'm kind of oblivious, so I'm that person that has people surprising me all the time. :)

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  8. Awesome! Everything looks so fun! Love the creative games! And so glad it went so well! I saw your insta post about it and couldn't wait to see how it turned out :) I know what you mean about planning them being SUPER stressful though. I did a surprise going away for Chris when he moved down to the city (he'd been in his former location for about 9 yrs) and he was totally surprised! It almost got ruined like 3 hours before by one of his friends, but I managed to lie my way out of it and somehow (I'll never know how!) he bought it! Here's the link if you want to check it out - http://alhadventures.blogspot.com/2013/10/surprise-our-ldr-is-over.html

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  9. Yay! I'm so glad it turned out well!!! We already talked about the surprise party I threw for Ryan back in March, but my experience was similar to yours. It went really well and was a lot of fun, but I probably won't do it again, because I was so stressed setting it up! I can't even imagine trying to throw one while pregnant and in the middle of moving! You are a rock star!!!

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  10. +10 wife points! I do love me some surprise backyard BBQ (and nacho) birthday parties. I love his reaction, it's half surprise, half "why did you do this to me?". And what a blessing that the family came up!

    I do events on a regular basis for my job and ahh, the stress. Even with kids birthday parties. So much work. So much that can go wrong. I would never, ever, be a wedding planner.

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  11. I've never done a surprise party and I know how my hubby feels about turning another year old. I'm pretty sure I can't get away with such a party. I am hoping to plan a 20 year anniversary/100 year old house party. That's a few years down the road. Looks like you had a blast and planned a successful party. estherdavison@gmail.com

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  12. YAY! Everything turned out so awesome!!! :) Lovin' the macho bar for sure, I would have done work ;) I planned a tiny surprise party for Jared like 4 bday's ago. Everyone surprised him at a Dave & Buster's, which was fun! But obviously I didn't have to do much work other than keep it a secret. Great job on pulling this off! PS- you are stinkin' cute.

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  13. This is awesome!!! I hope you went ahead and did a hair flip for how well you pulled off this party! I am a huge fan of finding things I like on Etsy and then trying to recreate them for way cheaper. Thanks, Hob Lobs!

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  14. aw this is so fabulous! my husband's 30th is coming up and i knew there was no way we could get away with a surprise party. i planned a mini weekend getaway when we went to Australia and I kept it a secret (and lied a lot) for MONTHS and then 3 days before we were leaving, my nana ruined it. haha.
    looks like you did fabulously!

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  15. omg! SO fun! I love that he was surprised! The pictures are great and love that you played a few games too! Welcome to your 30's Jordan :)

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  16. Happy Birthday Jordan!

    You know what's also cool about those $4 prints from Staples? You can mod podge them to a canvas from Hobby Lobby that you buy with a 40% off coupon and make the cheapest art ever! I've done it so many times and people LOVE it :-)

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  17. Happy birthday, Jordan!!

    Great job on that surprise party!! You did awesome. I love it when surprise parties are a total surprise to the guest of honor. Well done!

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  18. This is all so great!! I'm amazed all your friends managed to keep a secret! I'm not so sure our friends could do that, haha! You are a rockstar for putting all of this together. It all looks awesome! And you're right, your sister-in-law should be a party planner! She's so talented!

    Christopher turns 30 this year! We're trying to decide what we want to do for his big birthday. Right now he's leaning toward a cruise, but we shall see! :)

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  19. What a fun party! I can't believe you managed to keep it a secret. And all the decorations and games and food...nice job!
    Also you are so cute, I literally can't even.

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  20. Ah good job pulling it off!! Thank goodness everyone kept it a secret! :)
    For my 17th birthday my mom pulled a surprise party off for my twin and I. She did it by having her BFF tell us to do a surprise party for my mom I remember my brother saying that he thought the party may be for us and I was like gosh Kiefer that's so rude it's for mom!!!! Uh yeah, I was wrong :)

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  21. Wow. I'm so impressed. My husband is turning 30 in September and has requested that I make him a banner than says "Dirty Thirty". I love your pin the mustache game ideaand I think I'm going to have to steal it. I'm so inspired now!

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  22. Oh my goodness - so fun!! I threw a surprise bday party for my mom's 50th and I agree about the stress, but like with J, it's all worth it.

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  23. Wow! What an awesome birthday surprise! I love all of the decorations - it all looked so good! It must have been so special to have everyone together to celebrate! I remember when I was 5 years old, my dad threw my mom a surprise 40th birthday party. I am not sure why they trusted me to keep such a big secret, but I didn't tell her and she was so surprised! It was definitely a night we all will never forget, and I am sure you all will feel the same way about Jordan's 30th!

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  24. OH MY GOSH can just say how impressed I am right now?! Because I am SUPER impressed! All your little details worked perfectly from the macho bar to the "30 sucks" (hahahaha), and pin the mustache on Jordan. This would have been an epic party even if it hadn't been a surprise but the fact that it was, makes it that much more epic!! Also, well done on the etsy-inspired banner- so great! And finally, I'm quite relieved to find out baby Bum is STILL a girl ;)

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  25. This looks great! Way to go! I just put together the other day that my husband was 25 when we married (his birthday the day before our wedding) and so he'll be 50 the day before our 25th wedding anniversary. So, I've got eight or so years to plan an epic surprise party. (or I could do something for 45/20...) The stress. I feel it already! :)

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  26. So cool! I'm impressed that you pulled off such a big surprise and the party looks great! I absolutely love hosting parties and I think surprise parties are just the coolest. I've been a part of some successful ones, and it's always the best feeling. Angel's exactly one year older than Jordan, but your birthday party for him is much better put-together than our rough-and-tumble sports weekend!

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  27. How fun! You did an awesome job...and I can't believe you were able to keep it a surprise!
    P.S. your baby bump is so flippin' cute! You really look great!

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  28. This is seriously impressive! I love the pin the mustache on Jordan game! So hilarious!

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  29. This is strange, I KNOW I left a comment on this post! Weird. I remember saying how impressed I was with all of your decorations and ideas. I definitely know what you mean about this being the last one you will throw since it's stressful to keep the secrets! There were so many times that I wanted to tell Lamar about his surprise party to just get the secret out there so I wouldn't stress any more. Ha.

    I'm glad Jordan had a great bday!!

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  30. This is so rad! I love that you did a surprise party! It makes me want to start planning parties, must for fun!

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  31. i can't believe that out of 40 peeps no one spilled! THAT IS AWESOME!
    i love the theme and all of the decorations, y'all really made this fantastic for him!
    (hello, i want to play pin the mustache!) haha

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