Someday I'll realize that my success as mother does not directly correlate with my creativity and home-baked goodness. In the meantime, I'll just suck it up and deal with the curse.
With Jack's birthday falling around a holiday, he's never had a real party. We've celebrated with family multiple times, and once even took a trip to a little water park with two buddies. But never a party with games, food, cake, and goody bags. Until this year.
Walking through JoAnn's one day, he spotted a pirate ship cake pan and that did it. He was dead set on a pirate theme, and there was no going back...
I set about creating invitations, and was thrilled with the finished product:
We made goody bags, full of pirate gear I found on ebay (gotta love the internet!): a skull & crossbone bandana, pirate eye patch, pirate pencil, mini pirate beachball, and a few gold nuggets (aka chocolate goodness) for good measure.
Jack picked the menu, and nutrition was ignored for the day: Mini corn dogs & chicken nuggets (they were the right "golden" color), pineapple (we threw in some strawberries, watermelon, and grapes for good measure, Pirate's Booty, and some Pepperidge Farm Goldfish. To drink, it was "Pirate's Blood" (otherwise known as Kool-Aid).
As moms dropped off their boys, they jumped in the pool and swam until their fingers turned to prunes.
After lunch, we played a single game - Stick the Treasure Chest on the Treasure Map.
Then it was time to open presents...Jack was well mannered and said "Thank you" after opening almost every one -
And then, it was time for the big cake reveal. I do not claim to be a master cake decorator. I'm content to either make a plain cake with plain (albeit delicious) frosting, or to buy my cakes pre-decorated from a bakery and deal with the mediocrity of the cake itself. But this time, I did it myself, from start to finish.
After I baked the cake, I was trying to figure out what to put it on. It was too big for my cake plate, and a plain pan seemed to blah. I decided to create an ocean around the cake using Rice Krispie treats...dyed blue!
I had never used decorating tips before, and didn't know how much frosting would be required. So I took the easy route and bought colored frosting in tubes, with a screw on tip. Don't tell Martha...
It wasn't quite as hard as I had expected, and within a matter of an hour or so, it was done!
I used food spray paint to darken up the "ocean" from the "sky" - Steve's suggestion.
Jack was thrilled with the party, and said it was "the best party he'd ever had!" I didn't remind him it was the only party he'd ever had!
Now if I can just get him to finish his thank you cards....