Today was the day that girl monkey had been looking forward to for a while. It was the day of her CUPCAKE PARTY! Because her birthday falls around the August bankholiday weekend it is a difficult time to organise a birthday party. This year however she had friends round on the day and a party for her school friends.
I absolutely love parties at home. My all time favourite was boy monkey's pirate party last year but the one today is now sharing the top position.
It was very easy to come up with a plan; we were going to have 12 girls all aged between 7 - 8 and they are all easy to please. These little things love everything that glitters and sparkles and know their top 40's better than I do! Girl monkey loves baking and make-up and High School Musical and Hannah Montana and.... just about anything really. So we came up with cake decorating and some girlie activities. Over the past few weeks I found some sweet decorations and some lovely plates, cups, napkins, etc with cupcakes on them.
The trickiest thing was to come up with a good cake. As it was going to be a cupcake party I was hoping to make a giant cupcake. There used to be several fabulous tins on the market, two halves (length ways) put together but I couldn't find these. I did find another one but thought it a bit pricey especially as it might only be used for one party. And then one day on the way to boy monkey's sports coaching I stumbled upon Spreadborough's in Cheadle, which happened to be the place where my friend Jo had bought some super glitter for a cake she made some time ago. This place is a real treasure trove! It looks like a florist but has an extensive cake and craft department as well.
The result is this : a moist Nigella chocolate cake with glittery purple butter icing, edible sparkly flakes, flowers and butterflies. The fairy was the only non-edible decoration. Girl monkey loved it!
Upon arrival all the girls got a glass of "champagne" (sparkling grape juice) with a fancy cocktail stick with a strawberry; they thought it so grown up! They even behaved like grown ups, all standing around, chatting about this and that and enjoying the music.
Then we got some unusual beads and waxed string out in shades of blue/green/red and made necklaces and bracelets and the girls sat down in turn to have their nails and hair done. We got some very funky colours, sparkly ones (of course) and even French Manicure. There was glitter and braids for their hair. Oh, how they enjoyed that!
When they were all "ready" they played musical statues whilst proper food was being prepared (I made sure they all good some carrot sticks and cucumber on their plates just in case!). And instead of the usual party pudding of jelly and ice cream, I made a cupcake "bar". I made 48 plain, chocolate and lemon cupcakes this morning (the house still smells lovely) and purple butter, strawberry and lemon icing and there were loads of decorations. I couldn't guarantee they were without e-numbers (and it probably wouldn't have been that much fun!) We had all sorts of sparkles, diamonds, rainbow drops, love hearts, smarties, blueberries; just about any colour of the rainbow was available. They all had a lot of fun and so did I.
The 2 hours flew by and they weren't keen to go; there is always the anticipation of the party favours. I have never really been a fan of party bags. Not because they can get quite competitive (and I am sure I am to blame in this department... ) but because they are usually full of rubbish. Loads of sweets and cheap plastic toys and I am not in favour of either of them. I am also not keen on the plastic bags they come in although I have found many uses for them (sandwich bags, disposable bags). I do realise though that a kids party of humous and carrot sticks and tulip bulbs isn't the way to go either so I try to opt for something in the middle. For today's party favour I chose a cupcake cookbook, a cupcake lipgloss and a flump (they seem to go in the party bags every year as the only sweet). As the book was too big for a bag I wrapped the whole lot nicely in some colourful gift wrap and it just looked lovely.
It seemed that everyone really enjoyed the party. I better put my thinking cap on for next year's as I am sure that will be discussed sooner or later.