Lila was really, really excited about having a birthday party this year--especially after seeing how much fun the boys had at their birthday parties. She settled on a theme far in advance, maybe even before Asher's party. I wasn't going to be surprised if she changed her mind, but she stayed excited about her theme idea and so we went with it: we had a baking party. Now, you might think I'm a little crazy for having a baking party with seven 3-to-4-year-olds. And I would have to agree with you a little bit. But the party actually turned out better than I thought it would and overall everything went smoothly!
The first thing we did was decorate aprons. I'd found kids' aprons at the dollar store (wooooooot) and I let the kids go to town with fabric markers. Once the aprons were deemed decorated, it was time to bake. Our first project was cookies. Before the party, Lila and her friend McKynlee had helped me measure out all the ingredients into small bowls. During the party, I simply went around the table with my mixing bowl and let each kid take a turn dumping in an ingredient, then using the electric hand mixer to blend. The mixer was very, very popular and everyone was quite excited to get a turn. The kids were surprisingly patient while they waited for their turn and no major mishaps or messes happened!
While I scooped the cookies onto cookie sheets, I set the kids loose in the family room. Thankfully my friends Krista and Kate had stuck around--they were in charge of supervising! The boys had hidden various kitchen tools around the room and the kids were in charge of finding them. This game was quite popular and everyone found at least one kitchen implement. And, when they'd finished, I had finished scooping out the cookies, hooray.
The next thing Lila wanted to do was "play the games from McKynlee's party." This was an easy enough request: we played red light, green light; duck, duck, goose; Simon Says; and had balloon races and dances. The best thing about a group of preschoolers is that they are pretty much pumped about everything, so they all loved the games.
Now it was time for another baking portion--cupcakes! Lila had helped me bake cupcakes the day before. The other moms and I let the kids pick which color frosting they wanted, which we then applied, then we let them top their frosting with decorations. Lila and McKynlee had helped me separate out a cup of treats for each kid, which worked out really well. Some piled treats on their cake and some just ate the treats, but everyone was happy.
After cupcakes, we ate our creations, sang to Lila, opened presents, then played a little bit until all the moms came. Lila had a really fun birthday and I'm glad she has such a sweet group of friends!