My birthday party posts get a lot of views, so I thought I’d go back in time and write up the parties the kids had in the pre-blog days.
Back when Maggie turned 5, she requested a princess party. I swore I would never allow such a thing, but when your little princess wants to be a princess it is tough to say no.
As usual, it all started with the invitation design:
(If you like this invitation, it is available for $10 in my Etsy store. I will customize it with your personal party details and email you the printable files within 48 hours!)
The cake wasn’t my favorite, mostly because I’m not good and getting the frosting smoothed out enough and I didn’t have the patience for piping that day. But it was relatively simple. I baked a rectangular cake for the bottom, and two smaller sized round cakes for the upper levels. The turrets are ice cream cones rolled in pink sprinkles, the door is a Hershey bar, and the windows are white chocolate. Purple-wrapped Hershey Kisses and mini-marshmallows finished out the decorative touches:
The guests were more than happy to show up in formal attire – it set a good tone for the event. Her big brother even clipped on a tie for the event!
We carved a watermelon to look like a royal chariot, and filled it with fruit. I also dipped some pretzel rods in almond bark and rolled them in pink sprinkles. They made for delicious, edible princess wands. When it was time to dine, we set flowers on the table and used plastic champagne glasses to make the dinner feel “fancy.” The pink lemonade was perfect. You could bring out the fine china and silver to set a truly royal table, but we don’t own fine china or silver so we settled for paper plates. (No one complained, especially when it came time to do dishes!)
We didn’t do much in the way of decorations for this party. There was a sign that said “Maggie’s Castle” on the door, but no red carpet entry (although that would have been easy). I used a dry erase marker and wrote “Mirror, Mirror on the Wall, Who’s the Fairest of them All?” on the bathroom mirror.
Soon it was time for the Royal Treatment: Every party guest was treated to a pedicure. We set up an assembly line of moms on the deck, and the kids had their feet washed, soaked, massaged, and moisturized before selecting the polish of their choice. This was a hit!
The kids also played dozens of rounds of “Princess and the Pea.” First, I read the fairy tale aloud to make sure all the guests knew the story. Next, we set out 3 pillows and hid a small ball underneath one. The “Princess” had to wriggle around each pillow and try to determine which one was hiding the “pea.” The kids loved this and played dozens of times, giving each child multiple chances to be the “princess.”
I found many other ideas online:
- Pass the Poison Apple (hot potato)
- Pin the Slipper on Cinderella
- Royal Ball – a freeze dance until the music stops and someone yells “midnight”
- Bring in a “Royal Jester” who can juggle (I almost convinced my husband to do this…)
- Build castles with sugar cubes
These were fun ideas, but in the end the kids preferred free play. I made sure there were plenty of coloring sheets, dress up clothes, a tea set, and dolls around so they could play.
Most of our kids’ dress up clothes have come from the thrift store, but for Maggie’s birthday we bought her a sparkly new Belle princess dress. If you decide to buy a dress I would highly recommend the Little Adventures brand. Maggie’s is soft, comfortable, and still in good shape a full two years later. I bought it on amazon.com and they cost $20-$40.
I still have mixed feelings about the Princess Party. We only own a couple Disney movies, and I certainly don’t want our daughter to believe those princesses are the normal standard of beauty. But in the end, I don’t think watching an occasional Disney flick is going to scar her for life. And to be honest, those Disney princesses have some pretty admirable traits tucked into their tiny waistlines. Who wouldn’t want to be Belle’s librarian?
In the end, I believe Maggie’s role models will be real people, not colorful characters that only come to life on a screen.
And of course our little princess will always have her dad and I reminding her of the most important princess lesson of all: