25 March 2012

Owls and other cliches

Grace requested a craft party to celebrate her fifth birthday.
Owl icecream cake. Malteasers and mint leaves are winners
It was more challenging that I had thought. On the one hand, the crafting had to be easy enough for four and five year olds to manage and on the other hand I didn't just want to recreate the sort of cutting/pasting/collaging they do all the time at kinder.

We 'made' crayons...

...in cool moulds that reference a few crafting cliches themselves - teacups, teapots, cupcakes, clocks....

We decorated little calico bags which I had sewn up, made clothes for paper people and created rock creatures.

Some kids like to go all out with the decoration,

Some prefer a more minimalist approach.

As it was a 'crafty party' I included as many crafty cliches as I could. Pennant bunting!  Made out of cut up old Golden Books!

Toadstools! (I'd love to know how you get the chocolate to stay shiny)

and more owls!

A couple of things made this party run very smoothly:

  • We did the craft and had some food and that was it. No attempt to fit in a million party games. I fought off a last minute urge to make a pass-the-parcel and I'm glad I did, though the year that we don't play it at any of the kid's parties will be kind of bittersweet. 
  • We didn't serve any hot food. I always find the juggle of getting things heated in time, but not burned, and then onto the table at the right moment pretty challenging. More than once the party pies are nicely warm just as everyone's leaving. I did make a zucchini slice and served it at room temperature. 
  • We bought juice packs, which are not very environmentally friendly, but which did save lots of spilt drinks and fusses with cups and running out of cups and trying to pour a million drinks at once. We didn't use anything else disposable, and all the food was home made, so I reckon that off-set the juice packs somewhat.
  • Icecream cake. I've written before about the advantages of icecream cake . It took about 10 minutes of speedy work to make the owl cake above out of a perfectly ordinary 2litre container of Cadbury vanilla icecream.  
  • Just friends.  I love having my sisters and mum, my in-laws and my nieces and nephews over for parties, but that adds up to 16 extra people to a party, and when you invite ten friends, and their little brothers and sisters come, and their parents stay for the party, before you know it, there are sixty people in the house and you're trying to find enough coffee cups and glasses for everyone.  Once they actually have their own friends (rather than just the kids of your friends) I've decided that we'll stick to friends only and celebrate with family in other ways.  Although funny things can happen when you don't know your children's friends.  Grace mentioned that one of the little boys at her party had changed his hair colour.  I though this was unlikely but assumed he'd probably had  a haircut.  His mother stayed for the party and we really hit it off, so when she left, I arranged to catch up with her on the next kinder day.  And at that point we realised that our kids attended the kinder on different days and thus their paths had never crossed.  I had put the invite in the wrong child's pigeon hole (same name) and his mother had just assumed that Grace must be one of his friends, albeit one he had never mentioned before...

1 comment:

  1. O man - that mistaken identity story is a corker! I hope you've made a great friend out of it!

    Looks like a great party - and your tips really, really resonate.