2/21/2010

Penguin Party!

When it came to planning Little H's birthday party, I turned to one of my very favorite resources, BettyCrocker.com. They have so many fabulous birthday ideas, including instructional videos, shopping lists, party activities and games, and even invitations that can be printed from your home computer! I was trying to decide which way to go....a Fire Engine Party? a Perfectly Pony Party? Or, my favorite, Panda Bear Party. Well, for Little H it was Penguin Party or nothing! Hold on to your hats, we're packing in a LOT of PARTY in one post!:)

Fortunately, I found this adorable cheeseball on the Betty Crocker site! They also had tons of adorable penguin ideas! I began to think we might actually be able to pull this off!
For the cake, Little H wanted Betty Crocker Dark Chocolate with Vanilla icing. Good choice!
Inspired by the cheeseball, we made an igloo cake with penguin cookies. Instead of cream cheese blocks, we used marshmallows to decorate it. This cake was a snap!
I bought an igloo cake pan, however you could really just bake a cake in a bowl and use a single cupcake to form an igloo.
But, I bought the pan because it did double duty as the invitations, too!! We froze blue water in the cake pan with an invitation and a toy penguin inside (placed in a ziploc baggie). We dropped them off at friends' houses and told them to take it in the tub or melt it in the sink for a surprise. Cake? Check. Invitations? Check. Let's get on to the food!
Here's my verion of the penguin cheeseball. Definitely not as cute as Betty's but the kids loved it!
We also whipped up some rice krispy sushi for those fish lovin' penguins. Shape rice krispy treats into ovals, place a small swedish fish on top and wrap with a piece of green fruit roll-up. I used raspberry candies for the "roe" on a few pieces.
Easy and cute! These were a big hit with all the little penguins in attendance.
We also served ham/cheese and PBJ sandwiches cut out as penguins and fish (the girls gave me a penguin cookie cutter for Christmas and my friend Jean bought a fish one for the occasion!). Speaking of Jean, she did so much to help make everything, thank you!!
Blue Jello-Jigglers cut into cubes...these were "ice blocks"...
We served it all up with a table covered in rainbow popcorn! For activities, the kids each got to color and customize a grocery bag to hold all their game prizes. This kept the kiddos busy while everyone arrived.
With a little spray paint, posterboard, and craft foam, we turned a large cardboard box into a penguin! Not only did it serve as a fun decoration, the kids got to try to "feed" it by throwing fish shaped bean bags into its mouth.
Everyone had fun making her own penguin scarf. The Birthday Girl was very excited about them!
Gourmet Dad magically turned pieces of foam board into "icebergs" for Musical Icebergs. Here little A is anxiously waiting to see if her number is the winner!
A note on the "icebergs"--they were actually my favorite part of the party! Whenever I needed the kids to sit down or listen to instructions, I told them to go "find an iceberg" and sit down. They loved it! Great job, Gourmet Dad!
Penguin Bowling with a little set I found on clearance at Target...
...a strike!
Last, the kids went "fishing" by nibbling sweedish fish off strings without using their hands.
In addition to their game prizes (we wrapped every prize then let the kids open them after Little H opened her presents--they loved having their own "presents", too!), we sent home some black/white polka dot swag bags filled with goodies...
I even got crafty and made a few things for the bags, Organza Rose headbands (tutorial here) and personalized magnetic bookmarks (tutorial here).
The big question is, was it a hit? Well, a picture is worth a thousand words....
Happy Birthday Little H and special thanks to BettyCrocker for all the birthday ideas!

Betty Crocker, through MyBlogSpark provided us with VIP coupons, a gift card, and camera to document our birthday planning adventure. The opinions expressed in this post are honest and not influenced by any source. I was not compensated monetarily for this post.