Saturday, February 26, 2011

Let’s Get This Party Started!

My baby turning five. Five. It doesn’t seem possible.

Five seems so old, relatively speaking I mean. Five is no longer a baby. I guess she hasn’t been a baby for a long time but four-year-olds still  hang out at home with Mommy. Their life still revolves around the family.

Five-year-olds leave and go to school…sometimes on a bus (gasp) all by themselves (double gasp). Their lives expand beyond home. They become so much more independent. They have more opinions and more ideas of what they want.

And now my little girl is going to be one. A five-year-old.  I’m not sure that I am ready.

Ready or not, five she is, so I guess its time for a party!

Last year I had a party at home for Molly . It was very fun, but required a lot of planning, preparation, stress, decorating, shopping, stress, hard work, and stress.

I loved doing it, really, but it was exhausting. The party was a huge success, however, I swore I would never do it again. At least not to that level. It was kind of over the top.

When it came time to plan a party this year, guess what I did. Umm, yeah. I threw another at-home party. And this one was even more over the top than last year’s, at least in terms or organizing and implementing.

We had a bento box party. A bento box is a Japanese box, stuffed with some of the most adorable food you’ve ever seen. Now I could have filled all of the bento boxes myself, but nooooo, that would have been way too easy. I decided I would teach the girls how to prepare their own bento boxes.

The food we prepared in our bentos took 15-20 ingredients. Logistic nightmare, as I quickly found out. Oh, and each girl had a dozen or so “tools” that they needed as the assembled their food boxes.

In the end, it was a success.  I think. The girls did a fantastic job making their bento and everyone seemed to have a great time. And after a few Xanax (joke), I had a great time, too.

But next year…next year I am having Molly’s party somewhere else. Just sayin’.

Here are the party pics:

Dining room AKA craft room. IMG_5629

Crafts waiting for party goers.IMG_5631

Family Room transformed into the Hello Kitty Café.IMG_5633IMG_5637

The Living Room became the Bento Box Chef’s Academy.IMG_5638

The Birthday Girl (in case you didn’t notice the t-shirt!).IMG_5649IMG_5656

All of the girls received an apron and chef’s hat. They decorated them before we started cooking.IMG_5665IMG_5666IMG_5668IMG_5669IMG_5670

Presenting the Junior Bento Chefs!IMG_5672

We played a quick game before cooking. It was called the Big Candy Grab. Each girl had 30 seconds to get as much candy into their cup as possible.

Except they had to pick up each candy one-by-one.

With oven mitts!IMG_5682It was fun to watch the girls work so hard to get candy but, alas, no one go too much. All part of the plan. Don’t need a houseful of little girls on a sugar high so early in the party!

Time for making Bento!IMG_5686IMG_5687IMG_5688I wish I would have taken some pictures of the finished bento boxes as the girls did a great job. But, I was just a bit preoccupied with other things.

Eating Bento in the Hello Kitty Café.IMG_5689IMG_5690IMG_5691

Time for presents! I had Molly open each gift with the gift-giver seated next to her. I think this was wonderful. Molly could really show her appreciation to each friend and each girl got to share in the excitement of the gift opening.IMG_5694IMG_5697IMG_5698IMG_5699IMG_5700IMG_5701IMG_5704IMG_5706

And then there was the cake. Yum! IMG_5709I had it made by a local Chinese bakery. They even wrote Happy Birthday in Chinese.

Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday to you…IMG_5711

Happy Birthday dear Molly, Happy Birthday to you!IMG_5712

Let the sugar rush begin!IMG_5713IMG_5714IMG_5715

Molly’s friends are the sweetest girls ever. Truly. You couldn’t ask for anything better. Molly thoroughly enjoyed having each and every one of them celebrate her birthday with her. And if my girl is happy, well them I am happy. Even if it means that I throw another party at home next year. Did I just type that?

I hope you have the best year ever, my great big five-year-old girl!

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