For a gal that’s no party planner, I sure am proud of the fairy wonderland I created for my daughter’s third birthday. With the help of friends and my super savvy and crafty mother-in-law, and all the fairy pins I could find on Pinterest, I transformed our humble little yard into a 3 year old’s Pixie Hollow.
There’s No Place Like Home
Planning and executing the “perfect” party can get pretty expensive, so I knew I had to be resourceful when it came down to this fairy business. We saved money right from the start by having the party in our home. Having it at home spared us park rental fees, kept our cars parked in the driveway, and saved us lots of time in prep work. Moving and transporting goods from one place to another, setting up in a different location, the chance of rain – all good reasons to keep it simple and keep it in the backyard. It just keeps it easy, and with youngins, who fights easy?
Keep It Small
Another element of easy-flow party planning was keeping the guest list small. There’s an age-old saying that says there should only be as many guests as your child’s age. I really like that etiquette as it keeps things easy and intimate; not to mention, it saves money (and catfights) too!
Upcycle to Save!
With the guest list figured out and location down pat, it was then time to scour websites and old cabinets for decoration ideas. I scored quite a deal from “partygobox” on eBay as they sold me 6 sets of fairy dress up clothes complete with wands, tutus, headbands, and wings for under $20! Can’t beat that, and free shipping too. I borrowed a few goods from friends like table linens and small vases, and I collected old jelly and pickle jars to use for flowers. Upcycling and not buying new are great ways to be resourceful, and it afforded me the ability to purchase a couple of cute items from MagicCabin.com that I had been eyeing for a while. Magic Cabin has some of the cutest décor and items for children’s imaginative play, so I scooped up a couple of things to use for the special day that can also get lots of use in the future.
Make the Menu Fun
With birthdays and other special occasions, the menu is always the most important part to me. It doesn’t have to be lavish by any means because that’s just not my style, but I do like it to be thoughtful and homemade. I guess it’s just in my blood coming from a long line of fantastic home cooks, and although I’m no pro, I certainly can get in the kitchen and make something delicious! I cheated a few times just to save myself time, but the end results were perfect. We had an all-natural yogurt bar with all the fixins (thank you Pinterest!), cupcakes with homemade strawberry icing (store bought boxed cake mix), and fresh-squeezed strawberry lemonade. We kept it simple, and it was a hit with our little fairies!
The day of the party, my girlfriends joked with me, because after seeing the set up they thought I went above and beyond! The beauty is I didn’t! It was fun, cost-efficient, and easy! Party planning just isn’t my thing – heck, it’s why my husband and I eloped – but I do know one thing: I wanted Naomi’s day to be special and memorable. And it was. It was so special that she keeps asking about having another one!
Now that’s a party worthwhile!
Dear, Paula Deen
Well I think you are the most amazing person, you are my role model if they took you off from the set I would of died inside your the best cook and I can't waite to see you again
Alexis Conner in Summer Salad Days on December 04, 2013 at 4:59 pm
Paula, I used to watch your show on Food Network a lot when I still had the TV and cable many year ago. You weren't even that big a star back then. I always love watching you cook on Youtube after I ditched my TV and cable and read your recipes on Food Network Magazines. I hope one day you can return to Food Network and the Food Network Magazine. I stop buying the magazine since you were gone.
Orindary Jane in Love at Last on December 04, 2013 at 2:32 am
Great blog Cindy!!!! I always enjoy reading your post. This Thanksgiving centerpiece is absolutely beautiful and so easy to make.
Ann in A Perfectly Easy Thanksgiving Centerpiece on December 03, 2013 at 8:10 pm
Paula, made your Zucchini Custard Casserole for Thanksgiving and it was Fantastic!!! Thank you so much! Love you & your family. Happy holidays!
Pat Walker in Love at Last on December 02, 2013 at 8:45 pm