Ever since my eldest daughter was able to verbalize what she liked, I started planning her birthday parties around her interests. She picks the theme and helps design the menu. This year she turned the big 0-5, and we celebrated with a Pinkalicious theme party (I love that she picked a book character ). I added in Greenasaurus for the kids who don’t care for pink, but I realized afterwards, that the theme really means nothing to kids as long as they have a chance to run around, play with their friends, and eat cake. Below are some highlights (and suggestions) from the party.
Setting: Since the prospect of having 30 kids (and their parents) in my house was more stressful than the actual party planning, I reserved the playground pavilion in my development (I did this last year too). I realized the weather could be bad and we’d end up in my house anyway, but I was willing to take the chance. Luckily I had a beautiful day!
Menu: In the Pinkalicious story, she turns pink after eating too many pink cupcakes, and the only way for her to go back to normal is to eat green veggies. We went with a similar concept but added in some extra healthy pink/red food too. My daughter picked her favorite pink and green snacks and I made the pink cupcakes.
Since Pinkalicious is also known for her star wand, I made star-shaped melon (inspired by this Pinterest pin). I got a large watermelon and one honeydew and cut both into slices (sort of) in order to use my cookie cutter. The rest of the menu consisted of: sliced red & green apples, celery & cucumber with hummus, and non-color coordinated bowls of Lime Tostitos (technically it’s green right?) and pretzels.
For the cupcakes I wanted to make them from scratch and found this recipe using buttermilk for a more fluffy and moist result. I made them in advance and kept them in the freezer until it was time to ice them the day of the party. They thawed on their own and were perfect room temperature in time for dessert. For the topping, I used regular pink icing, silver sprinkles and dark chocolate raspberry M&Ms on top to make them look as close to the book version as possible.
The party was held at the playground in my pavilion, and I learned last year that if you have a playground at your party, the kids don’t really care about craft projects, nor do they even care about decoration. Knowing that helped me narrow my focus.
In addition to the typical stuff like plastic table cloths and coordinating plates/napkins, I made tissue paper bouquets for the food table with mason jars and hot pink tissue paper flowers with green pipe cleaners as stems.
My big gamble project was to make a streamer wall out of party theme colors. I had a good idea about how wide to make it and just used packing tape to connect the strips together. The one thing I didn’t take into account was the wind; as we started taping it up at the top of the pavilion wall (behind where the food table was), the wind was blowing the streamers all over the place. I gathered the bottoms into a few sections and taped them against the bottom wall. I was really proud how it turned out as it added just a small touch of elegance to the party.
I use my daughters’ birthday parties as the opportunity to get into craft mode. I start with Pinterest for inspiration and then scour the dollar store and discount craft sites for supplies (or use what I already have to keep costs down).
For the Pinkalicious part, I made yellow star wands using star shaped cutouts from the dollar store, Wilson brand dowel rods, and pink gift ribbon. I used packing tape to attach the ribbon and rod to the back of the star. As the girls arrived to the party, they had the option to decorate it with sparkle glue pens.
For the boys–or anyone who preferred dinosaurs–I created dinosaur masks using green paper plates cut into a half mask shape, construction paper cut into triangles, and elastic to put them on.
Games & Activities
Again since the party was held at the playground, I didn’t need to do much in terms of activities for the kids. At 5 years old, they can pretty much entertain themselves. However, I stocked up on hula hoops, bubbles, jump ropes and frisbees from the dollar store.
With all the time, ideas, and detail that went into the party, what mattered the most was that Maddy was happy. But next year, I need to rethink the size of the guest list; Mother Nature might not always be on my side, and the idea of 30 kids in my house is a little too much to think about!
I’d love to see your birthday party ideas too! Leave your links below!