Once upon a time, a very pregnant me, sat in October counting down the weeks to the expected date of a certain little girl’s arrival…slightly panicked by the fact that she may indeed arrive right on Halloween. Now, whilst this may seem like no biggy to you, but for lil’ ol’ me who’s slightly nutty about the fun that is Halloween, I was doing my best not to seem like a selfish little kid not wanting to share my toys. I mean, I love birthdays (my favourite!) AND I totally Love Halloween too (another favourite!)..But having it smashed together? Well, wouldn’t that just mean dilution of the fun?!
Silly old me was admittedly ever so slightly concerned as to what it may mean for Halloween for us. (err,me.) Yes, I know, t’was a little too late to rethink our planning on our timing at that stage, so I begged my little bump to come whenever she wants to …just not ON Halloween. Pretty please? And BAM, just like the sweet little soul she is, baby Parker-Grace listened to her mommy’s silly plea’s, and instead came the day before Halloween! Wow, she listened! (Ironically, not the regular behaviour she displays these days.Hmmm…)
Yes, wow,she listened, except…the actual party celebrations is another thing. So, my very first Halloween with Parker-Grace, which was a few hours after she was born, was spent nuzzling with her, and getting completely lost in her angelic face, thinking,this is not a half bad way to spend Halloween at all.
This year however, I wasn’t sure. This year, even though we were so two-minded about having a party at all this year, this year I decided to dip my toes into the idea of combining a few of my favourite things: Halloween and birthdays! Just maybe it could work. Just maybe. I didnt have my hopes up about it (or the weather), but we did it in anycase!
And so was born Parker-Grace’s Monster Bash! And anyone joining us on the day therefore, simply had to join in on the Halloween fun!
We went all out this year costume-wise : Hired all round. Which saved me big time, as I had quite a full plate (make that a platter!) this year in life… The fact that my back was all spasmed up didn’t help much, and sent me into a slight little panic about whether or not I’ll make it through to the party itself. And when we suffered a death in the family, my mom went and lovingly represented our family. So, understandably, yet sadly my mom was not there to celebrate with us…Leaving me, slightly crapping my pants as to how this would all go down without her.
But yes, costumes – we so rocked them this year. Im not even sure who’s I loved the most.
Birthday girl was uber cute in her Mike Wazouski, and refused to remove it. I drew the line at sleeping time though. I don’t blame her – it is a pretty winning costume.
What’s so cool about that costume was that the eyebrows and mouth actually move along with you as you talk. Genius. And cute.Obvs, when they discovered this, it was excitement all over again.
We really hunted and hunted for one suitable for Mike. But eventually decided on this one. And it was pretty cool if I may say so myself. The fact that he couldn’t squat or pretty much sit down in it was totally besides the point, because the cool factor was up there. ( the things this man would do for me.) : )
Not my first choice actually. I was actually looking to go as a period witch. You know, with those fancy schmancy dresses, but I came up empty handed. So in a last ditch attempt, I did a last pop in at the costume store with Mike and spotted this baby.
And gotta say, it was a win!! (By the way, if I look at all pale to you: it’s the makeup, I went with a cover 2 shades lighter to get the pale Maleficent look. I however, did forget to put in my lime coloured contact lenses – I was so busy, yo!)
(Kids costumes: Both from KidsFancyDress in Parklands. Adult costumes: Both mummy and maleficent from Madcaps in Parklands. For more ideas as to where to hire great costumes, see here.)
Speaking of busy, being man alone on this (with Hubby of course) I was honestly seeing my ass that day, so much so, a lot of the décor that I had ready there, didn’t get to see the light of day. BUT, a few little special touches courtesty of my sister from the States added nice overall touch to everything.It really was nice for me, cuase it kind of made a way for her to be part of it, even though she’s so far away.
The spiderweb cloth – so chic, yet spooky! (see the cheese platter pic)
The flameless candle…
The window decals of haunted house, flying witches, etc. (not pictured)
However, all our bags and bags of spider webs, will just have to wait till next again…
But lets get down to the details:
As per usual, the entrance kicks off the mood of the party, so we had a graveyard up…
Pumpkins of course…
An Arachnaphobe’s nightmare to greet you….(although Pax who physically gets the heeby jeebies when she sees a spider or creepy crawly, took one look at it, and was like “coooool spider , mama!”. I wasn’t sure whether I shouldv’e been surprised by her lack of fear for a giant version of her usual phobia…or the fact that she, unprompted, just expressed herself like a grown-ass teenager! Two, going on twenty, eh!)
We had the usual pies and half moons, along with sushi and pizzas. And saving my butt like no other, my mom sent through a pot of curry which fed the rest of the masses.
I also made my first cheese platter…which im pretty chuffed about.
The cake table
We had quite a bit going on here…
There were the candy jars, that I basically made by upcycling jam jars, wrapping a ribbom and Mike Wazouski motif around, and filling with some jelly beans/candy. (For Wazouski motif, see these cupcaketoppers here)
Black kitties (Woolworths 2015)
I whipped up a batch of Spooky Almond vanilla cookies, that I served along with my mom’s vanilla pudding heart shaped and girly cookies.
My sis-in-law swooped in and made sure the Cookie Monster was also representing there at the Monster Bash, along with another one eyed green monster as his guest. Arent these cute?!
My mom also sent a monster sized chocolate cake..which I forgot to decorate with the monster eyes I had made.
Same goes for the orangey cream chocolate cake of Mike’s aunty that she so sweetly baked! Just needed the monster final touches – that I forgot. Ho hum.
And then there was the Birthday Cake…the cherry on top right? Right?! Naaa, it was actually just a series of three baking fails in a row that I eventually just gave up on, and piled all my fails on top of each other, covered with fondant, love and a hope and a prayer, and called it a cake!
I quickly made a fondant Mike Wazouski the night before, and once it passed the litmus test of whether birthday girl knew who /what it was, he got plonked on that cake, along with his two monster buddies.
As for the rest of the cake table, there were vampire teeth amidst other candies…
I had planned on making my usual Frankenstein pudding cups, but instead had these…
By the way, I eventually admitted defeat when my back completely abandoned me so much so, I couldn’t bake any more, so instead we invested in about 2 dozen Woolworths cupcakes, and Monster-fied them with these cute monster cupcake toppers (ToysRus) as well as these free cupcake toppers I found over here.
And rest were all party gobblety-gook of nuts, straws, and stuff.
Then, can we talk about this Bubble Station? The very same bubble station I forgot to set up for her birthday last year. Except this time, it was labelled Swamp bubbles…because you know, Sunlight soap = Green. So ya, pretty fitting with the whole monsters theme and all if you asked me…Cause you know, there’s like a whole monster species that have their origins in swamps. What? You didn’t know?! Well, go check out MonstersRus dot com for more of the make-believe crap Im spinning right now. : )
Factually speaking though, it was basically a self-service station where you get to make your own bubble wand and fill up your bubble cup whenever you need to. I’ve also fine tuned the recipe my dad taught me back when I was a kid. (See easy peasy fool-proof Bubble recipe here!)
We also had our annual Halloween Bone Hunt, which was a real quick version of our usual one, but still very much enjoyed. (Useless fact: We usually do it at night by light of torch/lantern. Loadssss more fun like that!)
I had two more games planned, but to be honest, I was so spread all over that party between snacks, first aid kits, and the like, that I honestly just couldn’t get to it. (Such a far cry from the jam packed games line-up I used to have for my nieces and nephews back when we didn’t have kids of our own!)
And the jumping castle is like an evergreen favourite- kids never seem to tire of it. By the way, the company we used this year, was seriously the best deal you’ll find in town! To see just how competitive they are, why not drop “Kids just want to have fun” an email. Now if the ode to Cindy Lauper in their name was not enough to steal your heart then Im telling you straight that their prices will be. And their service is friendly as well!
Oh and to end off where it all started: invites! I found this free template here. Well actually, its not really an invite template, but I made it into an invite. Worked fine! Check it out. Did I mention it was free?! 😉
The Party Packs
Oh me gosh! I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have fun putting this party pack together:
First off, cookies. There are ALWAYS cookies in our loot! Made these Wazouski face and Sully-esque cookies using my usual Almond Vanilla recipe.
Then there were these cute little slime monsters…(for the easiest 2 – ingredient slime recipe, go check it here.)
Then there were these ghostly little suckers…cheapest effect ever! Yogetta lollipops covered in thick tissues, secured with twine, and ghostly face with sharpie. Boom.
I had heard from lots of the parents that these packs were a huge hit!( to which I secretly did an airpunch) I know one particular boy, in fact, made sure he packed his one up and took it to school to show all his buds! 🙂
In fact, as I was told, lots of kids didn’t want to leave that day. Geez, I can’t tell you how happy that makes me, when I hear things like that. Even the birthday girl, at only two years old was all about “mah party, mah party, mah party!”, telling us how she loves jumping (jumping castle),and cake and Mike Wazouski. In fact, that night, after the costumes were eventually removed, big sister was already making plans for her birthday. Oh, boy.
But just so you know, I don’t airpunch because of some sort of silent competition in my head, but purely because it warms my heart to know that all the effort that one puts in to create the magic that one is hoping for, was not all for naught. That the birthday person felt super special, and that every kid there had a great time, helped make, and was part of something magical that day.
Yeah…birthdays (my favourite) combined with Halloween (also my favourite!). This meant we, as our tiny family got to spend it with a bunch of people that we love and adore, celebrating a dynamite little person that we all love and adore! Feeling that kind of love and seeing the excitment in the children that day, is very much a that key ingredient to all sorts of wonderment.
I guess I may just have to vito my own original thoughts on never smashing two of my favourites together…Come to think of it, I suppose THAT is actually my real favourite thing! For, these memories we made that day, THAT is where the true magic is!
Besides, if there was anyone who could knock Halloween clean off it’s pedestal I placed it on, it certainly would be one of our kids. Hands down.
Ps. I just have to state it for record purposes, that we had the best weather we could have wished for that day. Despite the rainy build–up in that week, we got the exact weather we were hoping for: not too hot, not rainy, not windy – just perfect. What a beautiful day indeed!