Kid’s Birthday Parties

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Jemima was 5 on Monday and as usual we had a rather large party for her friends, siblings and parents on the Sunday afternoon.  For the first few birthday parties I served loads of sweets and treats and shrugged that birthdays only come once a year.  However, little did I realise that Miss Sociable could end up with 5 invitations in the same week which has the potential for an overload in “treat” food as she had for the week prior to her own celebration.
Having also just interviewed Michael Pollan the day before the whole real food issue was sitting in my head.  So, the challenge I threw myself was how to have a fun party but not do an excess of “rubbish”.
and to get kids to actually eat some reasonable food.

Lunch was served on picnic rugs on the lawn and was all savoury.  A near table was set up with mugs of water.
homemade sausage rolls
garlic bread
homemade pizza
cherrios (hmm)
chicken pieces
pineapple and mandarins

After kids had time for second and thirds we lit the candles and did the cake.  This I had made using the gingerbread template from 

Cake was followed by hokey pokey icecream in cones and then a pinata which had two wrapped chocolates each.
So while there was definitely an element of the unhealthy I was really pleased with the balance.

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16 thoughts on “Kid’s Birthday Parties

  1. HI Helen
    Love the Gingerbread House, But am wondering where I get a Template because I would love to try this for my Grandaughters Birthday this week.

    Many Thanks

  2. Hi there,

    Love the gingerbread house, what a fab idea Helen.
    I hate loot bags also and I also dont agree on pinatas.
    I prefer to do a tresure hunt in the garden or house depending on the weather.. you can hide all sorts of toys/food and give the kids a certain area to find stuff in as some do get more than most..that way hopefully they get the same amount…

  3. One Christmas, I made a Gingerbread house instead of the usual fruit cake. I used small lollies and a little bit of icing to stick them onto the roof of the house in the shape of letters. They matched the first letters of all the children there for the family meal, and they all had fun finding their letter. The roof was carefully broken into pieces so that each child got their letter when it was time to taste test the work of art.

  4. I’ve thought a lot about this pinata thing. We are trying to teach our kids that violence against any living thing is not acceptable. What if the pinata were in the shape of a cat or dog? What if it were in the shape of a baby??? The kids probably don’t even think about the shape, but who knows? Wouldn’t it be just as much fun to make the object something inanimate. A treasure chest springs to mind as being a better choice and recognisable to kids as something of value. I’m not trying to be self-righteous or anything, just thinking a bit about what message we are sending to our kids in the name of fun.

  5. Lorna do you feel the same way about shoving pins into donkey’s trying to find their tail? :)
    I actually find the pinata a fun game – the kids get right into it and cheer each other on. Maybe too because my kids are young it is actually quite a big deal if the stick makes contact with the pinata at all!

  6. I have my baby boy’s first birthday coming up and I want to make the cake as artificial colour free as possible – does anyone know if there are any food colourings that are ‘safe’ to use? I was doing a safari theme, so thinking of doing either a Rhino, Elephant or Hippo cake so can maybe get away with white icing.. If anyone has any ideas that would be great.

  7. That cake looks very pretty and would delight any little girl. Personally, I would rather give the children a small goodie bag than have a pinata. The concept of beating some animal to gain a reward goes against the grain for me.

  8. what a fab ginger bread house , bet all was devoured in no time by all the guests, my eldest daughter had one given to her for christmas it was lovely she didn’t want to cut into it. So glad that you had such a lovely time, the weather was just right too for it I thought of you while I was having a great time with new friends at the F L lunch it was superb!!!!!!!!

  9. Loot bags out – Gingerbread Houses in!!

    When I was little, our nextdoor neighbour (there was a stile in between houses and I loved visiting Jenny’s kitchen) made work-of-art gingerbread houses – I was absolutely gobsmackingly in love with them, I can still remember the flavour of the icing, which was weeks old when we were finally allowed to eat it!

    Well done mum!

  10. That looks so nice I will have to invest in a template for my granddaughters I am sure my daughter will be impressed and the girls will love being able to do their own.