Idea No.

9497

A-Dream-Come-True - Pin the Blue Bird

Award

Date

September 2004

From

Susan in Valrico, Florida   USA

September 2004 Winner

Cinderella Party

My husband and I wanted to give our little girl "A Dream-Come-True" Party because after all, she's our little Princess! 

To begin, I purchased Disney's Snow White invitation paper instead of cards because I wanted to make up my own wording and make it look like a real royal invitation.  I made the invitations on my computer with the specialty paper and I even printed the envelopes in a fancy script.  They looked absolutely like royalty!  Here's how it read.  Once upon a time there was a beautiful little princess about to have her 3rd birthday, and she wanted the fairest of them all to come to her royal celebration!  Princess Hannah invites you to her castle for  A Dream-Come-True Party! Address, Date, Time  Royal Guests will be served the finest delicacies of the kingdom.  And for dessert Black Forest Cake, Gooseberry Pie, or the chef’s specialty Poison Apple Pie of course!  It’s to die for!  Regrets only Telephone Number 

We decided to have a backyard cookout and invite family and friends.  My husband set up three white canopy tents we had purchased for our little girl’s birthday the year before and we borrowed folding tables and chairs from family members.  I decorated some tables with Snow White paper tablecloths, others with coordinating soft yellow plastic tablecloths, and placed plastic poison apples along the center to hold the tablecloths down in case of occasional wind.  I purchased Disney Princess cardboard stand-ups to place on each table and sprinkled iridescent sparkle hearts around them so the reflection from the sun would give it a magical sparkle!  I was going to use just Snow White paper stand-ups but I thought it would be prettier to have all the Disney Princesses shown because as we all know, little girls always have a special princess with which they identify!  I think this makes it a little more special when they see their favorite princess on their table!  I also tied helium-filled balloons and ribbons to each canopy tent to give it a festive look.  They were pastel-colored to coordinate with all the Snow White paper goods.  Just the setup alone made for a sensational party look!  The front of the house also looked fantastic! 

My husband made a castle faced made out of two refrigerator boxes.  He drew, painted, and cut out a castle that he constructed and attached to our front columns.  Wow, did it look spectacular!  This was the grand entrance to the Royal Ball!  In fact, this was such a great photo spot that we decided to take pictures of each of the children with our digital camera, have them developed, and send them to each child for a keepsake in their Princess thank-you cards I made on the computer.  By the way, I asked the parents if all the little girls could wear their princess gowns to the party and change into play clothes after pictures.  I made sure that I had several princess dresses available to any little girl who didn’t have one so everyone would get their picture taken in front of the castle.  I didn’t want anyone to be left out.  I heard later that all the parents were so thrilled to get a picture of their child all dressed up.  This makes for a great thank-you to your guests!  A gift that gives back! 

As far as the front and back yards were concerned, my husband downloaded several Snow White coloring pages from the Internet and I took them to Kinko’s and had the characters enlarged on white paper to about 3 feet tall.  It’s fairly inexpensive to do and you don’t have to be an artist!  Just paint within the lines!  We then painted, cut out, and adhered each character to cardboard with spray adhesive.  After that, my husband cut them out with a box cutter and mounted each of them onto small garden stakes.  We positioned all of the characters in the front and backyard with signs I made using the computer.  In the front yard, we had the Seven Dwarfs positioned as they were walking up to the front door with a sign saying, Heigh-ho, Heigh-ho, it’s off to Hannah’s party we go!  A picture of Snow White was on the front door saying Welcome to the Royal Ball!  Princess Hannah’s A-Dream-Come-True Party!  As guests entered, I had set up our dining room with a take-home favor table.  It was decorated with take-home balloons, trays of individually wrapped homemade princess cupcakes and party favors.  I kept a bunch of balloons in the dining room so they would not deflate and each child could take some home.  Since they are latex, the ones outside get windblown and deflate somewhat so I wanted the kids to have nice ones when they left. 

My mom made delicious homemade princess cupcakes that were for the kids to take home.  I think most kids get excited about birthday parties that sometimes they don’t eat their cake so I like to give them their own piece to take home when they leave.  Kids love these as well as the adults!  We baked the cupcakes in Disney Princess paper cups I had purchased and we decorated the cupcakes with white icing and pink iridescent sprinkles.  I purchased a small package of princess confetti and we stuck a princess on each top sticking out like a toothpick.  We then packaged them in individual cellophane favor bags that had Disney Princesses on them with coordinating twist ties. 

The favor for the girls was a Snow White souvenir cup with a Snow White crazy straw, filled with goodies like a Snow White lollipop necklace, jeweled bracelet, jeweled barrettes, and some candy all wrapped up in a clear cellophane favor bag with coordinating curly ribbon and a fancy sticker on the outside saying, Thanks for coming to Princess Hannah’s Dream-Come-True Party, Princess _____!  I purchased sticker paper from Wal-Mart and made all the stickers myself.  For the boys, I decided to go with the racecar theme since I thought maybe a Prince theme might be kind of difficult to duplicate.  Boys love racecars so I found some souvenir cups with racecars on them and matching crazy straws on sale so, of course, that made up my mind!  I purchased some neat racecars from the Dollar General and some other fun and crazy little items that boys like.  I filled the cups up with all the stuff and also wrapped them up in clear cellophane favor bags.   The stickers I made for the boys’ favors had a racecar with a racetrack border and it said, Ready, Set, Go!  Thanks for coming to Hannah’s Party, Hot Wheels _____!  All the favors were a hit! 

I had another table decorated in the breakfast area with a Snow White paper tablecloth sprinkled with iridescent sparkle hearts, a Princess cake, a Snow White cardboard standup, a beautiful royal blue vase full of fresh red roses as the centerpiece, a punchbowl, fancy glass bowls of butter mints, and the Snow White paper goods such as the cake plates, punch cups, forks, napkins, etc.  I made this table look a little fancier than the rest since it was supposed to be royalty, of course!  Since it was an outdoor party, I thought it might be a good idea to keep the cake and punch inside to keep it cool.  We took the table outside when it was time to cut the cake.  The cake was a beautiful Disney Princess cake I ordered from a local bakery and to save a little on the cost, I decided to add my daughter’s plastic princess toy figurines we previously purchased at the Disney Store.  I had the bakery add a fresh strawberry filling and a whipped cream frosting which was absolutely delicious!  It added a special something to an ordinary yellow cake!  As the guests entered the backyard, I had a princess table especially set up for the royal gifts so people knew where to set their gifts down as they arrived. 

The backyard was decorated with the games, tents, and we rented a huge Disney Princess Bouncy Castle for the day!  The kids love these bouncy castles!  I even made a sign on my computer with some sayings I made up, Here Ye, Here Ye!  Princess Castle Rules:  Snow White says, Just whistle while you bounce!  Sleeping Beauty says, Don’t go nappin’, let the bouncin’ happen!  Cinderella says, Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Bounce!  Belle says, Be our guest, be our guest, put your bouncin’ to the test!  Ariel says, Don’t flounder around, bounce around!  Jasmine says, A whole new world, a bouncy place you’ll love to do!  Have Fun!!  I also rented a Sno Cone Machine and called it Snow White Cones!  Everyone thoroughly enjoyed this cool appetizer because in Florida the weather is warm and it certainly added a refreshing touch to an already warm, sunny day.  The adults enjoyed them almost as much as the children!  Everyone enjoyed Snow White Cones as the children played games and enjoyed the Disney Princess bouncy castle. 

To lend some princess atmosphere, I played a Disney Princess CD piped through our outdoor speakers.  As the music played, when it came to the Snow White’s theme song, Snow White suddenly appeared!  I purchased a Disney-licensed Snow White costume from an Internet store and my friend agreed to dress up and enter the party as Snow White!  Everyone absolutely loved it - adults as well as the children!  As soon as Snow White entered the backyard during the theme of Snow White playing on the CD, I introduced her to all the children and asked Snow White if she would like to help play some games with us.  As soon as each child got pictures with her, we all went over to the games and played as Snow White presented each child (every child is a winner!) with a special prize!  I made up some games that would coordinate with the theme. 

The first game was called Mirror, Mirror on the Wall.Who has the BEST AIM of all!  We blew up a coloring page of the Wicked Queen in front of the Magic Mirror, painted, and mounted it on cardboard with garden stakes, cut out the middle of the mirror, and each child had a turn shooting a bow and arrow (a child’s toy we found at a local toy store) through the center of the mirror.  The boys especially loved this one!  All action! 

The second game was what we called Pin the baby bluebird on Snow White.  We blew up a coloring page of Snow White sitting on the ground with a baby bluebird perched on her hand, painted, and stapled gunned it to our privacy fence.  I then drew, painted, and cut out several blue birds for the children to each pin on Snow White.  We blindfolded each child and they had to pin the little bluebird on Snow White’s hand.  It’s just like Pin the tail on the donkey. 

The third game was what we called Pick the Poison Apple.  We blew up a coloring page of the wicked witch hovering over her black witch pot, painted, cut it out and mounted it to a plastic Halloween witch’s brew pot I found at a local party store.  We floated plastic apples in water and put a poison symbol on the bottoms of the apples.  When a child picked an apple, if he/she chose one with the poison symbol on the bottom, they would win a prize.  Of course, we made every apple a winner! 

The last game was what we called The Seven Dwarfs Diamond Ring Toss.  We again blew up coloring pages of the Seven Dwarfs, painted, cut out and mounted them on cardboard with garden stakes and placed them around with signs saying the dwarf’s name and how many points they’re worth.  This is kind of like the game Horseshoes.  I purchased three small colorful hulahoops and glued a Styrofoam ball on each one with super glue.  The children were supposed to toss the hulahoops over the dwarf that would give them the most points. 

Last, but not least, the Princess piñata!  I purchased a piñata with Snow White on it, filled it with a variety of candy (be sure to use candy that doesn’t melt) and hung it on a tall shepherd’s plant hook that I borrowed from my mother-in-law.  I purchased little Snow White favor bags for each child for their candy.  This piñata was the one that has the ribbons instead of the one that you have to bash!  I’m sure that boys love the bashing one but the ribbon one is so princess-like!  By the way, when each child had a turn at each game, Snow White would reward each child with a special prize!  I purchased Snow White mirrors, Snow White bracelets, Princess pencils, and beaded necklaces for the girls, and a variety of prizes for the boys.  Every game was a hit!   

We thought that since we wanted to do an outdoor party, Florida weather in June is a little warm for mid-afternoon.  So, we decided a 6:00 p.m. party would be perfect.  We had a cookout with hamburgers and hot dogs on the grill, freshly shucked corn-on-the-cob, baked beans, chilled pasta salad, chips, pitchers of iced tea, and a variety of sodas and bottled water.  I like the idea of having everything iced down ahead of time in coolers and pretty party buckets sitting around.  That way, people can get to the drinks pretty much anywhere at the party instead of having them in one central location.  During the party, Snow White would walk around and talk with people but especially sat and ate with the children.  The little girls loved this, eating with a real live Princess  THE Snow White!  The looks on their little faces were simply priceless!  I also had my husband hook up a sound speaker with a microphone so when I spoke, everyone could hear me.  This also made for great karaoke for the kids!  They absolutely loved singing along with the Disney Princess CD we had playing and singing with Snow White!  I think that was the highlight of the party, just to hear those little voices singing! 

After the party, as everyone was leaving, when they passed the dining room, I was available to help give out the take-home favors, cupcakes, and balloons.  Also, it’s a nice idea to have your child there too to say thank you for coming and for the gift.  It’s a little more personable when you thank people as they leave.  We’re fortunate enough to have great families to help clean up as we’re saying goodbye to our guests!   During the party, my husband and I slipped away briefly to set up a few things in the front yard for guests to see as they left.  We had also made another 3-ft coloring page cutout of the Seven Dwarfs on top of each other saying, Heigh-ho, Heigh-ho, it’s off to home you go! And Heigh-ho, Heigh-ho, it’s out the door you go!  As they passed the Seven Dwarfs saying goodbye, we had another 3-ft coloring page cutout of Snow White and the Prince with a sign saying, And they lived happily ever after!  Thanks for coming to Princess Hannah’s Dream-Come-True Party!!!   

I hope some of my ideas may work for your party.  The most important thing I would suggest is proper planning.  First and foremost, choose a central theme and try to work around it so that everything coordinates.  In our case, our little girl loved all the Disney Princesses but Snow White happened to be her favorite at the time.  I found some really pretty Snow White party goods at a local party store so I worked around the story of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.  Second, brainstorm and make a list of all the things that center around your theme, such as ideas about decorations, games, prizes, food, entertainment, favors, etc.  Also, getting an idea about items you can use from around the house and items you can borrow can help save you money.  Then, think about all the items you need to purchase.  Of course, last but certainly not the least, think about a budget.  This can sometimes alter your plans in a big way!  Choose things that work within your budget and try not to deviate from them.  I’ve certainly had to change a lot of grandiose ideas but still had a fantastic party!  I pick and choose the things I want to splurge on and others of which I need to cut back.  Above all else, be creative and have fun!  After all, have faith in your dreams and somehow your dreams will come shining through!

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