Ain’t No Party Like a Homegrown Party. Back to Basics for an Easy Kid Party

As a mama of three little kids, I’ve thrown my share of big-ol’ birthday parties.  My husband and I love to host and I’d guess we’ve thrown 11 or 12 of those kid-parties where you invite the whole class, their parents, the siblings, the neighbors, the family friends and the family friend’s grandma, cause she’s in town and we <3 her, too.  It’s so nice to keep families together on the weekends and we always appreciate the “sibling’s welcome” note when it’s our turn to attend a kid-party.

But the simplicity of the homegrown party we recently threw for our little girl made me feel like the end of yoga class when the instructor is like:  “you’ve arrived.”  It was so.much.easier.

After all these years of having the whole class, etc., I think our daughter is at an age where she can have just a few close friends and keep it simple.  For her seventh birthday, Scarlet wanted an “American Girl Dance Party”, a homemade Funfetti cake, and a couple of girlfriends to come over and “do hair”.  I mean, she also wanted a weekend at Disneyland, so this little party was the perfect budget compromise.

Here’s what we did:

Food.  Scarlet LOVES to make guacamoleSo we made her Nana’s recipe (see below), and served it with lime tortilla chips.  We ordered pizza for the girls and served water and juice.  We also made four little “watermelon bowls”, where we scooped out the watermelon and used them as the serving bowls for blueberries, mango, cantaloupe, and mango.

Cake.  We bought two boxes of Funfetti cake mix and icing and made a three layer cake.  Scarlet decorated it and loved taking part.

Decorations:  American Girl decorations are impossible to find!  Scarlet took pictures of “hairstyles” she had done to on her dolls, and we printed them and made them into a sort of menu (a la Drybar) on posterboard.  Then, we used pink and gold table covers and balloons and picked up pink roses from Trader Joe’s.  A friend of ours made the pretty decorations (pictured above) with the American Girl star and Scarlet’s name.

Entertainment.  We had our favorite DJ come.  She took requests, let the girls sing a little karaoke and did a few games.  They LOVED it.

While the dance party was going on, our babysitter was helping the girls with hairstyles for themselves and their dolls.  Scarlet was also a stylist.  She had so much fun having a job to do at her own party.

Party Favors.  The party favors included everything each girl would need to have her hair (and her dolly’s) hair done.  A little compact brush, bobby pins, hair ties and a little spray bottle for water.

*Nana’s Guacamole

(Scale up for larger parties.  We used 4 avocado, and doubled the recipe)

2 avocados

Chopped onon (omit for kids.  We sometimes substitute with green onion which is more mild)

Nana’s Secret Sauce (aka 1 dash of Tobasco)

1 Roma tomato, chopped

Small bunch of cilatro, finely chopped

Salt and pepper to taste

Peel and core the avocado and mash the meat with a fork, add the ingredients (it always needs more salt at the end) and you have Nana’s homemade guacamole.  I like to serve with either organic blue or white corn tortilla chips, or go in a whole different direction and use the lime tortilla chips.  So yummy!   Want more of Nana’s recipes and hosting ideas?  Here ya go!