Our twins turned five last week – five! I can’t believe they are five years old already. It made me think about the last five years, how good those years were, and how much life has changed from when they were born until now. It also made me think about how much more I should have done with them during those years but I reckon it’s best not to dwell on that. I also got to thinking about parties and how much fun it is to have a celebration with your friends. Birthday parties in particular can be so much fun. I’m probably fairly typical in that I prefer organising parties for other people so having twins to plan parties for is perfect!
Parties can also take a little bit of planning, but planning and effort definitely pay off in the end. They usually follow a fairly predictable recipe:
Pick a theme: Pirates Ahoy!
It can be difficult to settle on a theme that will please girls who love pink and boys who love trucks and trains. Pirates fitted the bill nicely. Turns out pirate paraphernalia comes in pink too so all tastes in colours are catered for.
Throw in Some Decorations
Balloons are mandatory and streamers are always good. You can even get pirate streamers to hang from the ceiling. Throw in a banner or two and you’re good to go.
Add in a Treasure Hunt
Every pirate party needs a treasure hunt and every treasure hunt. I bought a treasure hunt game last year and embellished it this year by adding in more elaborate clues. I bought eye patches to put on all of the kids at the start of the treasure hunt to get them fired up and got them shouting “aaargh!” like good pirates after each clue was read out – hilarous!
Every treasure hunt needs treasure and I made ours by decorating a cool box to make it look like a treasure chest.
Step 1 Take one cool box
Step 2 Wrap in brown paper and black ribbon. Stick on some gold chocolate coin wrappers and some sea shells and draw on a lock.
Step 3 Line with red paper
Step 4 Fill with your treasure. I filled ours with goodie bags.
Don’t forget the Treasure Map
What would a treasure hunt be without a treasure map? I made this one by drawing out some pirate doodles on a large white sheet of paper. Next I painted it with tea and browned the edges with some dark brown paint.
Stir in a Birthday Cake
Who doesn’t love birthday cake?! They make a nice centerpiece and are crucial for the singing of “happy birthday”. And you can’t have a kids party without letting them try to blow out the candles on a cake! I’m always sightly amazed that anyone would want to eat it after two small children have sputtered all over it but it turns out that chocolate cake is hard to resist. This year we went for a chocolate bonanza – chocolate fudge cake, chocolate icing, chocolate fingers stick all around the outside, and Maltesers, white chocolate buttons and large handfuls of m&m’s add up to a real chocolate feast! Once it was decorated I wrapped it in pink and blue ribbon to finish it off.
Mix with Some Party Food
I realised half way through the party that I had forgotten to put out the strawberries and blueberries that I had put in the fridge, so the party food table consisted of crisps, cookies, and cake! Ooops! We also had some pizza but I think more of the mums had that than the kids….
Borrow a Bouncing Castle!
One of the twins’ friends has a bouncing castle and her dad very kindly offered to lend it to us for the party. It was fantastic! All the kids just loved it and it helped keep them outside in the garden as well as add the party atmosphere.
Finally add in a load of friends and bake for two hours
All parties need good friends to make it happen. Good friends enjoying themselves and singing happy birthday make it a party. Friends make it exciting and fun and they make you feel special for that day which is what a birthday party is all about.
Roll on next year’s party! Not that I want to wish the year away, I really don’t. But this year’s party was so enjoyable that I can’t wait to do it all again. And I’ll try not to forget the bowls of fruit next time!