Archive for the ‘Children’ Category

Crack Open the Rainbow and Celebrate With a Colorful Birthday Party

June 3rd 2010

If you decide to have a colorful birthday party, use the rainbow as your color scheme. Pick colors from the artist’s palette for everything from invitations to decorations to food. Mark the location of the party with a brightly colored bouquet of balloons tied to the mailbox or tree out front of the party location. Encourage attendees to wear their best and brightest colored clothes to the event.

Send out invitations with every color in a box of 8 Crayola crayons. If it is a kid’s party send out invitations that the recipients can color and return to be included in a coloring contest. Award a small prize for the best and brightest coloring job. Send each kid home with a grab bag filled with brightly colored trinkets.

invitations

Decorate the party venue with red corvettes, blue moons, big yellow taxis, red apples, purple grapes, brown chocolate, purple Kool-Aid, rainbows, pink carnations, red roses, strawberry fields forever, green clover, yellow hay, pink elephants, yellow beans, silver bullets and gold rush.

How would a menu fit into such a birthday party? Start with a big bowl of fruit, crispy vegetables, cheese popcorn and multi colored M&M’s. The colors may clash but no one will notice. For cold drinks include different flavors of soda, juice and Hawaiian punch. If adults are at the party include Mai Tai’s, scorpion bowls and pina coladas with colored stirrers. Make different colored ice cubes for the punch bowl and the cold drinks.

mm1 Crack Open the Rainbow and Celebrate With a Colorful Birthday Party

Nothing says a colorful birthday party by setting the table with red table cloths, yellow napkins and plates and orange cups. Don’t forget brightly colored disks to be used for coasters, colored straws for the kids and the big kids. Cover the serving trays with different colored deli paper. Toss handfuls of confetti on the tables and maybe even the floor, stick balloons of different colors to the walls and ceilings, toss streamers at the guests as they enter the room.

Most food and condiments have a lot of color to them but accentuate the colors with their arrangement on the table. Arrange the mustard, ketchup, mayonnaise and relish in containers that look like a paint box. If you serve food that involves sauce or gravy put them in small paint buckets. I am relating painting with color schemes here. Corn on the cob piled on a platter will be like setting the sun on the table.

For entertainment play songs with colors in the title. Ask everyone to insert different colors as much as possible into the conversation. (“Boy did I have a crappy brown day today.”) Play charades but have the participants act out their favorite color. (“Hang loose with chartreuse” might be an interesting charade.). Movie trivia might be guessing movies with colors in the title. A cool kid’s game might be a scavenger hunt where they will have to find a red sneaker, a red headed kid, a green apple or a handful of green clover.

Possibilities of a colorful birthday party are endless and with a little colorful forethought, it will be successful.

Posted by admin under Children & Decorations & Hostessing & Occasions | 2 Comments »

A 1st Birthday Party Only Comes Once in a Lifetime

May 30th 2010

I don’t remember my 1st birthday party but I’m sure I had a good time. I remember my nephew and niece’s first birthday party and I know I had a good time. My nephew tried to take a big bite out his cake by putting his face right into the cake after his number one candle was removed. My niece took two handfuls of frosting and rubbed it into her hair. Whipped, vanilla frosting gave her hair a lovely sheen.

1birthdaycake A 1st Birthday Party Only Comes Once in a Lifetime

A 1st birthday party is more for the parents than the child, I think. It is a wonderful milestone to see your child reach their first birthday and why not share the day and celebrate with family and friends even though the one year old has no clue why so many people are in the house. Watching a one year old open presents is a lot of fun. They might tear through one or two gifts and then they will be onto something else like following mom around or playing with the other kids. Or they may have no interest in presents at all and the gifts will stay unopened in the corner of the room. And that will be the last time that child has no interest in presents.

A 1st birthday will be a busy day for the wee little one. They may not get their nap and become a little cranky before the day is out. They will most likely wear most of their cake and ice cream and a cup of soda may be generously applied to the child sitting next to them. The patience of the child will be tested as he or she is passed from guest to guest as they wish a happy birthday to their favorite one year old.

Since parents and their kids will be in attendance at the 1st birthday party, it will be a bit of a brag fest for the parents. They will most likely spend time trying to outdo each other with tales of their extremely talented child who is able to perform tasks of a much older child. But no one can explain why that same talented and intelligent child is sitting in the middle of the room picking their nose and wiping snots on their clothes.

Getting the kids to play a game will be a challenge. Dodge ball is probably out of the question as some kids will just run right into the ball or try to catch it, removing the challenge of the game. A piñata is a dangerous game anyway but putting a stick in the hands of a one year old whom stands about knee high can be a real danger to dad if they swing that stick at the closest thing to them and dad is the closest thing.

A 1st birthday party is worth ever picture taken and the extra work getting cake crumbs out of the carpet. It is a mile stone for the child and the parent who only has 17 more birthdays to go.

Posted by admin under Children & Occasions | 5 Comments »

Throw a Seed Starting Party for Kids

March 16th 2010

sm missyredboots139 Throw a Seed Starting Party for Kids

It’s finally the beginning of Spring. Everyone has a little bit of cabin fever and wants to get outside in the sun. A great activity for kids is growing some flowers and veggies. Even if you don’t have a yard or place for a garden, try planting a few things in containers. Your kids will be amazed at how things grow and they might just eat more veggies because of it!

Starting seeds is easy enough for kids to do, but you’ll want to make sure to supervise. After all, you may be surprised at what children will put in their mouths when left to their own devices. This is a good reason to get organic potting soil or organic seed starting medium. You can get seed starting trays that have soil disks that get big when water is added to them. Kids love to watch that!

First make a few invitations and make sure to invite the parents too. You can never have too much help at a crafty party like this. You’ll want to plan out a few treats for snacks. Try to include some of the fruit or veggies that you will be planting that day. Dress up a salad with fresh strawberries, blueberries and nuts. Then serve it on a unique square dinnerware plate to get the kids even more interested. Make lemonade with pureed blueberries. It’s just as colorful as the sugary drinks you can buy, plus you control how much goes in it.

You can buy peat pots and seed starting medium or get seed starting kits. The kits will cost more, but can be used again next year with new refills for the soil. If you are having a slew of children, peat pots will be the most cost effective. Have boxes or waxed paper bags to send the planted seed pots in so the plants actually make it home in the car.

Lettuce is a great plant to grow and can help kids like salad more. Don’t forget tomatoes, basil, pumpkins and fun flowers. One of my first gardening memories is plating a petunia plant in a milk carton in the first grade. This party is the fancier version, plus in a few weeks, everyone can re-pot the seedlings into their own container garden.

Posted by Myriam under Children & Spring Entertaining | 1 Comment »

Got Cabin Fever Yet?

February 13th 2010

snowywindow1 Got Cabin Fever Yet?There is such a thing as too much snow. After the novelty wears off, you may find yourself stuck inside your house with bored children who simply don’t want to play in the cold anymore. It can be more irritating than a tantrum if you have a week snowed in with your family.

Plan ahead so you aren’t caught off guard. Have a few things hidden in the back of your closet to delight your little ones. Coloring books and special crayons or markers can usually start some projects for the very young. Pick up a few board games when they are on sale at places like Barnes and Noble or Borders. They often have them 75% off for months after Christmas. An origami book and pack of paper can keep them occupied all day. I recommend keeping a shelf just for surprises like this. It works great for last minute birthday parties you may need gifts for too.

It’s a great time to get the whole family too work on that cleaning project that you’ve been wanting to do. You will have to make it fun to get everyone’s cooperation. Think of a few rewards and prizes for different portions of the task. The kid finishing first could get to chose what movie to watch or as each one finishes their task they could choose one dish to have for dinner that night.

Keep a tube of frozen cookie dough on hand for impromptu cookies. They can be easily made with almost nothing to clean up afterwards. Another option is to involve the kids in making lunch or dinner. Older children can be taught easy knife skills, while the little ones tear lettuce for a nutritious salad. Give yourself a break and make a big pot of soup or everyone’s favorite mac and cheese. After all it’s your snow day too.

Once you’ve run out of dvds, try watching some new shows on Hulu.com or get movies direct on your laptop from Netflicks.com. It’s not so bad being trapped with all the modern amenities. As long as your Internet doesn’t go down, you can always google for more ideas when you need them. You may want to bookmark a few craft sites for next emergency while you’re at it.

Posted by Myriam under Children & Hostessing & Winter Entertaining | 2 Comments »

Snow Day!

February 1st 2010

snowman Snow Day!Parties come in all sizes from giant to just your own little family. A snow day is a perfect opportunity to have a family party to celebrate the day off school and work.

Bundle up and get outside and enjoy the white stuff. Find a nearby hill and take the whole family sledding. Make sure everyone is bundled up tight, and you might want to bring an extra pair of  mittens along for the youngest of your tribe.  Make sure to bring a thermos full of hot chocolate just in case it gets too cold.

Once you walk back home make sure to decorate your yard with some snow sculptures. You could make a few traditional snowmen or really get creative. Who knows, you may have a modern art piece that the whole neighbor will miss once the temperature starts to rise.

Don’t forget to make some snow angels while you’re at it. Once you stand back up go ahead start a snowball fight. You might even be able to get some of your neighbors involved. Just make sure to call a truce before anyone gets too worn out.

When you come in make everyone’s favorite snowy afternoon lunch – tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches. Make some homemade croutons and they can go straight form the oven into the steaming bowls of soup. Really, any soup is the perfect way to warm up. My friend loves to make a huge slow cooker of vegetable soup in the coldest weather and eat from it almost everyday.

Keeping the kids busy will prevent them for the dreaded boredom. A perfect activity is baking. Kids of almost tan age can help with cookies or decorating cupcakes. Older kids may even be able to invent new cookies. Make a basic sugar cookie dough and get out all your extras like nuts, chocolate chips, even cocoa and crushed peppermint sticks.

After they eat more than a few cookies, you may find your whole family sacked out in the living room. The end to a perfect snow day.

Posted by Myriam under Children & Party Food & Winter Entertaining | No Comments »

Make Holiday Cards with Your Friends

December 3rd 2009

christmascard1 Make Holiday Cards with Your FriendsAs you already know, I love to combine things. Almost any chore can be be made fun with a party and friends to work around. In fact, sometimes I even go grocery shopping with friends! Holiday cards can be a tough task for people like me who aren’t so good at getting things into the mail.

Selecting a card can be just as bad. So many boxed cards are geared to specific holiday traditions that aren’t necessarily appropriate for all of your friends. That’s why I’m having a holiday card making party this year.

You’ll need to get a few basic supplies at your local craft store. You can buy paper that is already cut and folded into a card size, or you could buy plain paper and make them in any size and shape you can think of. You can also buy ready made envelopes or make your own.

Pick up a few holiday themed stamps and colored stamp pads. If you have it in your budget, pick up a glue stamp pad and some glitter. It’s awesome to add somebling to your card. You could make paper snowflake cut outs and glue onto your card.

Still not feeling so inspired? Try looking at some of Martha’s cards, which are always breath taking.

This is a perfect party to have your friends bring the kids along. They love to create things and will inspire all your guests – including the adults. Have a sparkling cider or pour sparkling water into a glass half full of cranberry juice for some dressed up drinks for the kids. Go ahead and pop the cork on some champagne for the adults. Have a little Chambord to top the adults sparkly drink for an extra burst of flavor.

You may want to avoid the finger foods or you’ll find grease stains on your beautiful cards. If you think it’s a must, have the finger snacks before or after the card making session. I usually tend to have a cornbread topped chili pie or something thick that you eat with a fork. Of course, the kids should eat before they start making cards no matter what you are serving.

Ask everyone to bring Christmas stamps and you can address the cards and send them all off together in the morning. Have a nice dessert to celebrate your completed cards with. A super quick mousse can be made with a box of silken tofu, and a large handful of melted chocolate chips all blended in a food processor. Add a tablespoon of your favorite liquor and take it to the next level. I promise you, no one will know that it’s a healthy dessert and it takes less time to make than instant pudding!

Posted by Myriam under Children & Holiday Entertaining & Hostessing & Occasions & Party Food & Winter Entertaining | No Comments »