Tuesday, December 4, 2012

A Joint Boy/Girl Birthday Party: Success!

I’m not one of those mamas who keeps the house spotless and bakes from scratch daily. I wish, especially since that’s how I always envisioned life as a stay-at-home mom to be, but no – it’s a little more…um…chaotic than I’d anticipated.

However, I am in love with creative projects. With two wacky munchkins running around, I don’t get to do that fun creative stuff as often as I would like, but when it comes to special occasions...well, let’s just say I’m determined to make time for party planning!

Birthday cake ideas for joint parties

Hannah turns three in a few days, and Abram just turned one. Although I would have loved to let Abram have his own party for his very first birthday, it just wasn’t practical, given that their birthdays are only eight days apart and right in the middle of the holiday season. So we had one big celebration with some amazing friends, and I’m so glad we did because, wow, we had a blast.

Knight Birthday Party
Princess Birthday PartyEven though it was a joint party, I really wanted to find a way to make it special for both of them, so I opted to make two cakes. (I’ve mentioned I’m an overachiever, right?) As you can imagine, baking and decorating two fancy cakes in two days is no small feat – made even more difficult by two tiny tornadoes twisting about my toes (Whoa, alliteration, anyone?) – but nevertheless, challenge accepted.

As I began my search for how to create a joint boy/girl birthday party, I came across a website with lots of pics of castle cakes. Then I found a dragon cake tutorial, thus a Princess/Knight birthday party was born! (It was quite fitting, since that’s also what they were for Halloween.)

For the castle cake I made the towers out of ice cream cones that were frosted and stacked end to end, and sugar cones that were frosted and rolled in pink sugar. I found the silver flags in the party supply section at Target.
Pink Sugar Icing Towers

To simplify, I just used boxed cake mix. Hannah, who was quite ecstatic over the idea of having a princess castle cake at her party, helped me mix the strawberry cake (pink for the princess!), which I baked into two round tiers. I have the Wilton Performance Cake Pans that I bought back when I thought I was going to be baking and decorating cakes all the time (HA!).

I added some graham crackers and pretzels for the door and windows, and voila!

Kid's Medieval Cake Ideas

I used dark chocolate mix for Abram's cake and just followed the tutorial to make the dragon's shape, though I had to scale it down a bit due to space. He's got graham cracker spikes, marshmallow eyes, candied fruit slice claws and eyebrows, bite size Milky Way nostrils, and Fruit Roll-Up flames (because he's fire breathing, of course.)

Boy's Knight Cake Ideas

It was a lot of work, but fun and totally worth it when Hannah went crazy over them. When she first saw the completed cakes, she actually turned to me and said, "Mama, did you make that all by yourself?"

*Proud Mommy Moment*

Joint Kids Birthday Cake Ideas

They were also taste approved by Abram, but that doesn't really say much, considering just about everything is taste approved by 'Leftover', as his grandpa calls him.

Baby Messy Cake Face

And, of course, what medieval-themed birthday party would be complete without ‘slaying the dragon’?

Slay The Dragon Medieval Party

Whew, I'm tired! But you know what the best part was? Celebrating with our friends. Since we live so far away from family, the outpouring of love meant more to us than they'll ever know. Party planning is fun, but nothing compares to the precious time spent with the wonderful people we've gotten to know here.

If you're thinking about trying your hand at homemade cakes but aren't sure if you have the skill, I say go for it. There are so many tutorials and pictures out there to help you get the creative juices flowing, and you just might surprise yourself. Besides, if you fail you can always make a last minute trip to the bakery, and no one ever has to know. :)

Happy baking!