For Nate’s 4th birthday we had an orange juice party. No, that’s not code for a boozed up bash (as Chris told me it meant after everything was planned) This was a party with orange juice, and lots of it! It was all Nate’s idea. I was originally planning an air plane themed party to get the kids excited about our trip to Texas next month, but Nate had a vision and apparently is really into orange juice. So without a script to go by (which is much more my style to be honest), we went orange overboard. Orange you glad we did?
We had a chocolate orange cake, vanilla cupcakes with candied oranges, rainbow sprinkled Rice Krispie treats, Jaffa Cakes, chocolate orange Kit-Kats, orange ice cream, low sugar marmalade muffins, mandarin orange salad, orange and sesame chicken tenders, hummus with orange carrots and bell peppers, mini sandwiches with orange cheese, and about seven different kinds of orange juice (orange-lime, orange-mango, ruby breakfast, I’m starting to feel like Bubba from Forrest Gump). A week later, we’re still working through the orange juice! I’m not really a fan of chocolate orange, which is a pretty great method for not binging on cake. I’ll be honest, the baking for the party was nearly a disaster. My baking paper melted in the cake pan, ruining my first cake and Nate had a complete melt down about the orange food colouring I used in some of the cupcakes. Baking around tantrums (and tantrum related toilet accidents) is a challenge that really should feature in more TV cooking competitions.
I was super excited about out how the goodie bags came together. Everything except for the actual bag came from our local shopping centre (the bags are from Marks & Spencer). I drew the cute orange man and orange segments for his invite and ordered a bunch of stickers from Moo. They looked so fantastic and fit perfectly on mini jars of marmalade, so I decided to stick them all over everything. I found the ice lolly moulds for €1 at the Euro Value store and added a recipe for creamy orange ice lollies. I couldn’t resist making the orange gift boxes featured in MiniEco’s book (it’s actually blown up a bit bigger than the template download) and filled them with Maoam candy and stickers. And of course, I had to throw in an orange!
And of course, no birthday is complete without a cake. Nate knows the drill by now and was so excited to finally be able to blow out the candles by himself! His lovely auntie got him the Gruffalo costume that he immediately put on and hasn’t really taken off all week. It’s so adorable seeing him run around like a furry little monster. My favourite food the Gruffalo said Give me all the cake and not any bread!
This was the first birthday party that we’ve had a small guest list for. In the past, we invited everyone we knew because we really love sharing birthday joy (and cake) with as many people as possible. But with more family and close friends having little babies and as most of Nate’s friends acquired a brother or sister it just seemed like too many children for everyone to enjoy the party. It was really hard for me to not invite people, but we kept it to family and a couple of close friends around Nate’s age. I think it worked well because all the children played together nicely and the little babies got to enjoy the fun without risk of being trampled by the big kids. I also felt like I got to chat with everyone at the party for the first time ever. Most birthday parties end and I realise I missed half the fun. Has anyone else felt that way? The most important thing is that the birthday boy enjoyed it and is still basking in the orange coloured glow of being the centre of the universe for one day. He’s also taken to being a little party planner and is already working on an apple juice party for his dad’s birthday next month. His creativity know no bounds!