Sunday, February 28, 2016

This One Skill That I Have: Part 2

"In a world where news of inhumanity bombards our sensibilities, where grasping for things goes so far beyond our needs, where time is squandered in busyness, it is a pleasure and a privilege to pause for a look at handiwork, to see beauty amidst utility, and to know that craft traditions begun so long ago serve us today" John Wilson

Last time, gifts for adults.
Today, gifts for girls!

My friend the camel beanbag (perfect size for toddler to sit in between the neck and hump)!
Ranger bracers for the adventurous girl 
A friend for Abby, and Milly.  
 Sweet baby nappy pants and hair accessories 
 Felt tea bags for tea party play
 Dress-up apron with a heart pocket
Felt birthday crown
 Sparkly mermaid tail

Sunday, February 14, 2016

A Paris Party

The lady on checkout when I bought party goods (a birthday candle and ten packets of chocolate wafers are a dead giveaway), asked what kind of party we were hosting for our ten year old. When I said "it's a Paris party", she asked if kids still knew of her. Very grateful that my classy Mademoiselle chose An Afternoon in Paris over anything Paris Hilton!
Here are the details.

We used an image of Elara in Paris drawn by my youngest sister as the background for the invitations.

As the focal point for the 'cafe' the girls would visit, we (husband and wife joint effort) made an awning. Just one item and our back deck looked Ooh la la! Some painted cardboard window panes, potted plants and flowers, pretty cake stands, and a couple of sets of white iron table and chairs (borrowed and freshly painted by my older younger sister and husband - merci!), and the cafe was scene was set.

The food was tres bon: chocolate eclairs; toffee dipped, creme patisserie filled, profiteroles; chocolate caramel tarts; mini quiches; croque monsieur bites; fruit; and french fries! Making all the food is a big part of the fun for me.

While the girls ate we offered a few activities and games to give them the full Paris experience. My artist/baker sister came and drew quick portraits for each of the girls. They were beautiful and a fair effort when there were twelve excitable girls! We took instant photos next the a miniature (borrowed) Eiffel Tower, then made our own Tower sculptures from wafers and icing. Then we had a wandering florist give out chocolate roses (which introduced our Paris themed, G-rated Truth or Dare game). This was mostly successful despite everyone on sugar-highs! Each girl had a truth and a dare hidden in her rose and took turns to read them and act on them (I've added these at the bottom of the post for anyone who could use them).

Part way through the rose game we all heard a big thuwump and went outside to see Elara's beautiful macaron tower cake smashed on the ground (thanks/no thanks wind)! Fortunately, my sister (who made the macarons) and I (who, I'm not going to lie, put a lot of hours into it) and Elara (who was in awe of it) all saw the lighter side AND there was enough to go around and enjoy after the fall!
At the end of the afternoon, all the girls had a magnifique afternoon and took home a bag with all their goodies (portrait, instant photo, chocolate rose, and a croissant).

Hope you can enjoy these few photos of the day!
Dare: Pretend you are walking the Paris catwalk, modelling some fancy clothes! Dare: See how many berets you can balance on your head! Dare: Eat some frogs legs! Dare: Exchange a clothing item with the person on your right! Dare: For the duration of the game you must call out ‘Ooh La La’ randomly! Dare: Everything you say for the next 15minutes must be sung to the tune of ‘Happy Birthday’! Dare: Try escargot! Dare: Find three stuffed animals and say ‘Bonjour’ to each!
Dare: Play ‘This Little Piggy Went to Market’ (in a French accent, of course) on one person’s toes! Dare: Be a mime and copy the actions and expressions of the person on your left for one minute! Dare: Waltz along pretend cobbled streets under the pretend moonlight with your pretend partner! Dare: Give the French greeting kiss to 3 others in the circle! Dare: Dance the Can-Can for one verse (while everybody sings)!  Truth: If you woke up invisible, what is the first thing you would do?
Truth: What is the funniest thing you’ve done at school?
Truth: Do you dribble in your sleep?
Truth: What would you do with unlimited money to spend in Paris for one day?
Truth: What is the strangest dream you’ve ever had?
Truth: Have you ever said something out loud that you were thinking, without realising that you’d said it? What was it? Truth: What do you like most about the birthday girl?
Truth: Do you ever sneak snacks when your parents aren’t looking? Truth: If you could be an animal, what would you be? Truth: What is a secret wish that you have? Truth: What are you afraid of? Truth: What is your favourite tv show? 
Truth: Who is your favourite movie character?
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