28 Aug 2012
Ladies & gentlemen. Welcome to Ines’ Big Top Birthday!
Posted: 28 Aug 2012
Where does the time go? It's been a year since we donned flower headdresses for her Flower fairy party and this year, there was no expenses spared on creativity as The Circus came to town.
Planning birthday parties can be stressful, not to mention navigating the challenges of being allergy-free too. Every year I'm planning to spread the love and post what I've created for my nieces' birthday party here, with ideas and games and the odd allergy-free recipe to help inspire a themed party of your own.
Invites had been sent out and Grandma was set the task of making clown bows and a circus tent - OK, the circus tent was essentially a large stripy sheet cut in half to make two curtains and held-up on a washing line - simple, but it worked.
The party guests arrived to a colourful vision of bunting and hay bales. They all got into character with a pre-prepared clown accessory pack given to them on arrival; red noses and homemade clown bows. We then waded through a sea of helium balloons to start our first activity...the games.
Each child was given a strip of tickets, to exchange for 'go's' on each ride. They loved seeing the value in these tickets and were excited to pick what to use them on (not that I was going to stop them from having extra goes, once they'd all run out!)
First they chose 'Pin the nose on the clown' (my take on the classic 'Pin the tail on the donkey' game). Next...a coconut shy, for this I created labels I could wrap around two litre fizzy pop bottles and then cut off the bottle neck, so the coconuts were able to balance on top. Each bottle was then placed a good distance apart, so the rings could easily land on them. Well, I say 'easily'...my niece never even came close, it seems she's adopted throwing skills from her mum!
The children then attempted 'walking the tightrope' - white tape a few metres long placed along the ground. Impressive balancing skills were shown off as they connected heel to toe, all the way along the line. But if they meandered off, it was game over and back to the start.
Next...a clown's favourite - making custard pies! The party guests had to make their own individual pies, following a simple recipe and decorating them how they pleased. Finished pies were judged by the ringmaster (me) for the winner. A task I loved, seeing their creative minds at work. For the finale - a performance of their very own circus trick or talent in front of the 'Big Top' (ahem...stripy curtains). There were singers, dancers, acrobatic's (I say 'acrobatic's' loosely as these were very skilled forward rolls, but acrobatic's none the less) and a juggler. All of which made a wonderful ending to a jam-packed Big Top birthday party.
Instead of party hats, children could pick up a muscle man tash, or clown glasses and noses on sticks to make funny faces with - and a fine job they did too. As for our allergy aware Circus feast, I had prepared - Roll-up, Roll-up Wraps! Stuffed tomato juggling balls, Onion Ring Masters, Clown nose cakes, Chocolate apples and Top Pops Popcorn! All of this was dotted amongst other allergy-free shop bought treats.
An exhausting but fun filled day but I hope it's inspired you? If so I'd love to see the pictures of the Circus going on tour!comments powered by Disqus