Thursday, March 21, 2013

Over the Rainbow

A few years ago I realized that the span in which we could throw butterfly, fairy, or rainbow parties would be fairly short. With five children so close in age and two sets of twins equaling four shared birthdays, I decided we wouldn't skip or take turns. We would throw a big to-do every year.

I've always loved birthdays. I like celebrating people. I like setting a day aside to make someone feel special - share their favorite tastes, colors, interests, dreams. 

The kids, of course, have fun. But so do I. 

I don't have many opportunities right now (or time) to be creative. I do some creative refereeing, come up with top secret missions to help the boys empty garbage cans, or read stories with a british accent. And yes, I write. But when it comes to hands-on creativity, I don't quilt, sew, craft, or cook fancy. Birthday parties, however, I see as a chance to create something. Something magical and memorable.

 photo IMG_7779_zps20829e53.jpg

So we decided to try a new cake, the girls helped me with decorations, and together, we planned the activities. I considered it all an act of love. A way to fuss over them, show them they are worth my time. 

 photo IMG_7774_zps2e7a314f.jpg

Winter was lasting long and there were still several feet of snow on the ground, so we decided a Rainbow Party for Ali and Sami would be the perfect way to throw some color at winter.

 photo IMG_7825_zpsea3671cd.jpg

This is how it looked outside the day of the party. An hour later it was snowing hard.

 photo IMG_7842_zps0b7653d3.jpg

The anticipation was almost more fun than the party. As we turned streamers, placed straws in cups, and filled jars with candy, Sami kept saying, "Mom! This is going to be the BEST PARTY EVER!" She said it so many times I started to laugh, and wondered if I ought to curb her expectations. But she was so delighted with every detail, I just enjoyed her enthusiasm.

 photo IMG_7771_zps06e95245.jpg

A week earlier we delivered invitations to the girls' neighborhood friends. Ali and Sami made the name tags while I glued cardstock.

 photo IMG_7961_zpsef013f74.jpg

They are such good, sweet, and.... silly girls. Silliness was entirely appropriate. But, these were the best group shots I could get.

 photo IMG_7965_zpsf1e91d52.jpg

Lydia, catching some serious air!

 photo IMG_7836_zpsc9f3fa99.jpg

Eliza made the rainbow clouds all by herself. So happy to contribute and be a part.

 photo IMG_7821_zps89b6cedb.jpg

And all the girls made rainbow art to hang from our ric-rac banner.


 photo IMG_7799_zpsc24fefc0.jpg

We filled jelly jars with new crayons. (Found boxes of crayons on sale for fifty cents @ Target.)

 photo IMG_7809_zps4ee4cc37.jpg

The girls loaded the gift bags and I tied ribbon. 

 photo IMG_7793_zps4f6cfd85.jpg

Then we made rainbow streamers (Michelle's idea). 

These were a total hit. Simply buy wooden dowels at your local party store, then use packing tape to attach colored strips of crepe paper to the top of the stick.

 photo IMG_7874_zps35a30fe0.jpg

We covered a table with butcher paper so the girls could color and draw pictures.

 photo IMG_7863_zps68ae0c5e.jpg


 photo IMG_8013_zpsee04372c.jpg

I loved their art. 

I asked the girls to draw themselves, but most of them preferred to draw Ali and Sami. 

 photo IMG_7866_zps0d21a5c0.jpg

Rainbow candy skewers.


 photo IMG_7877_zpse02b3497.jpg

Beautiful Hazel. Ready to make rainbow necklaces. 

 photo IMG_7883_zps6ede5697.jpg

They bopped and bounced to music, singing along to every catchy tune.

 photo IMG_7890_zps1058b07e.jpg

Ali and Sami opened presents.

 photo IMG_7899_zps5d05fd30.jpg

And there's the tongue. Always out when she's concentrating.

 photo IMG_7915_zps73afb89f.jpg

Rachel's Mom made the girls these darling sock monkeys. With matching socks to wear! So much time and work. Thanks Steph! The monkeys have been a favorite for weeks. 

 photo IMG_7784_zps9fc06b0d.jpg

Recipe for the Rainbow Doodle Cake was from SweetapolitaI figured fondant couldn't be that hard. But for a rookie, it was kinda tricky. I had to throw away my first try. And I never could get rid of the folds around the perimeter. But it worked. 

The best part of this cake-making adventure? Doodling on the fondant with Americolor food markers

 photo IMG_7785_zps3370a82b.jpg

The whole family helped. 

 photo IMG_7929_zps0c851f14.jpg

Unfortunately, timing on the candle-blowing duet was a bit off. Ali missed it entirely. But she didn't seem to mind.

 photo IMG_7934_zpsdb6267cb.jpg

And the moment we'd all been waiting for? The inside of the cake!

 photo IMG_2483_zps94888804.jpg

The frosting was a lemon meringue buttercream. Very light and tasty, but I have to admit, the cake was only so-so. I think gel food coloring always weirds the taste.

 photo IMG_7955_zpsf4673926.jpg

But Eliza liked it.

 photo IMG_7950_zpsccd72b93.jpg

Ice cream faces.

 photo IMG_7958_zps4b17d340.jpg

More silliness.

 photo IMG_7979_zps513a8dcb.jpg

And lots of dancing with rainbow streamers.

 photo IMG_7984_zps3421770d.jpg


 photo IMG_8000_zpsaca64c2a.jpg

Afterwards, I felt kind of like Ali looks. Birthday parties suck the energy right out of me. Maybe one of these days I'll remember to prep a month ahead of time, instead of waiting until the last minute.

But honestly, throwing a party like this makes me happy. And Ali and Sami were over the rainbow about it. Which is all that really matters, right?


14 comments:

  1. Aww what a great party! I would love to try baking one of those cakes.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love your blog! We have a mutual friend in Lisa Paulsen :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Super fun! I 💚💜💙💛 rainbow parties. Great job and I can't believe you made that cake once, much less twice! 🌈

    ReplyDelete
  4. What an awesome mom you are. Thanks for sharing the fun.

    ReplyDelete
  5. What a beautiful party and what amazing memories you are making for your kids. I will definitely try to remember Rainbow themed party for when the girls are older. Love Jo (Australia)

    ReplyDelete
  6. This looks just perfect for your girls! They are so lucky to have a devoted, loving mama. Hope you have a lovely weekend and get some time with your busy hubby. Love you.

    ReplyDelete
  7. That party looks amazing! Lucky girls! The activities and decorations....sheesh! You are putting all of us boring Moms to shame :) It looks like it was a ton of work, but those happy faces are what it's all about! Love you!!

    ReplyDelete
  8. knit1, knit 2 - the cake was definitely the most fun! And Sweetapolita's recipe was easy to follow. xo

    Cheryl - Oh you lucky lady, to have Lisa as a friend. She is the dearest, most inspiring lady. Aren't we lucky to have her in our lives? And I peeked at your blog. What sweet kids. Maybe I will see you at the May POMS retreat?

    Shir - Luckily, I didn't have to make the cake layers twice. Just the fondant part. Should've asked you for "rainbow" ideas. Bet you had a bundle. Have fun with the in-laws this week! We miss you guys.

    Leslie - xo. Thanks for reading.

    Jo - You have so much fun ahead of you with those twin girls! Love hearing from you and knowing you're surviving (and well!) Love and support to you.

    Anne Marie - sweet friend, squeezed in a date night with the busy man this weekend. ;) The Opera! (a first for me.) Thank you for reading and and for your kind thoughts. xoxo

    Deb - you are the farthest thing from a boring mom! Remember? My girls way prefer you over me. ;) Missing you and hoping to see you this next week. xo



    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lisa and I are life long friends (literally since we were babies!) and yes I am so blessed to have her in my life, she's one of my heros!

      I would love to meet you at the POM retreat but I live in Vegas and am helping plan the one down here in April. I would love to meet you sometime, maybe next time I'm over at Lisa's :)

      Delete
    2. Vegas moms are lucky to have you! I would love to meet you if you are ever at Lisa's! I can see her front door from my kitchen window. xoxo

      Delete
  9. WOW, SUPER cute!!!! I just may have to copy you come Emma's birthday. She loves rainbows and art! Looks like a really fun time!

    ReplyDelete
  10. It's true that loving people can have a hundred different looks. I love that you've identified birthday parties as a way to lvoe your girls.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Hill - Doug and I were just saying how much we think Sami and Emma look alike. Do you think? Yes, if she loves rainbows, do it!

    Liz - Thank you for understanding what this post was about. I totally agree, loving people can have a hundred different looks. This is just one for me. You are so intuitive and good. Love you.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I've always loved birthdays. I like celebrating people. I like setting a day aside to make someone feel special - share their favorite tastes, colors, interests, dreams.


    I am SO WITH YOU! on this. And I feel like since we moved here, no one celebrates birthdays...my kids hardly go to anyone's birthday's but their cousins and it is such a fun childhood memory of mine, going to friends parties. Is this tradition being laid to rest....do you see this at all up where you are?

    Anyways, I am with you! Make them special! It's one day out of the year!!! So we get a few grey hairs pulling them off, it's worth it! YOU are creating memories that will last a LIFETIME!!!!!!!!!! I think you are awesome!

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts with Thumbnails