Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘parties’ Category

Anya celebrated her 5th birthday with a princess mini golf session at Lilliputt.  I was very happy to hear her party was being held there because I’ve been wanting to bring the boys there but we just never got around to going.

I had heard from Del how each hole was done up to show a place of interest in Singapore.  There was the zoo, the airport, the Botanic Gardens, a hawker centre, the port, among others.  The boys agreed that their favourite was definitely the military one where they had to putt the ball through a loop-the-loop, and through the barrel of the tank.

As there were quite a lot of children, they had to break up into groups.  The four Quah and Nair cousins automatically formed one group.  They huddled together very quickly, and Del and I commented on how the in-crowd, out-crowd thing starts quite early.  But it was nice that they had each other :)

The cousin group

The cousin group

The staff there made sure to brief the children properly, and told them the rules – if you take more than 8 strokes you are considered to not have passed that hole.  Well…I think the kids failed every single one of them, but who cares!  I stopped filling in the card after the first hole because there really was no point.  The kids had so much fun trying to get the golf balls through the various obstacles.  It was especially challenging for Ellery, and I had to guide him quite a bit.

At the end of the session, we still didn’t manage to try all the holes.  The boys want to go back again, so I guess we’ll have to make a trip there soon.  Definitely on my list of go-to places if the haze comes back.

Anya looked like she had a wonderful time, and she was a very good host to her guests too!  She made sure everyone had cake, and everyone lined up to get their goodie bags.  Princess manners indeed!

Colouring before the party started

Colouring before the party started

Briefing the kids before they ran off

Briefing the kids before they ran off

The military themed hole

The military themed hole

At the bird park

At the bird park

At Suntec City

At Suntec City

PSA

PSA

Pretty princess

Pretty princess

All the Wees!

All the Wees!

My best attempt at capturing a cousin photo

My best attempt at capturing a cousin photo

Read Full Post »

Emma’s 5th birthday was held at Pita Pan at Marina Bay Sands.  What an unexpectedly great location for a party, made even better by the fantastic January weather this year.  There was a ton of space for the kids to scoot and ride, and the breeze was very refreshing.  The kids had endless fun riding up and down the wide path outside the Art Science Museum, racing each other and taking turns to be the leader.

The food was great too!  I’ve always enjoyed Mediterranean food, and Pita Pan does a wonderful platter that includes falafel, hummus, and a wide variety of vegetables for stuffing into your pita bread, including beetroot, yum!  The falafel was absolutely divine!  I haven’t had such good falafel since Jon and I were on exchange in the US.  The hummus was a winner too, with the right texture (not to thick nor too smooth), and the right balance of flavour.

I forgot to take a picture of the food.  Here's a pic taken from Pita Pan's website

I forgot to take a picture of the food. Here’s a pic taken from Pita Pan’s website.  Looks good huh?

We’ll definitely be back for more!

The other kids went on to explore the new Gardens by the Bay playground, but Ellery was getting worn out so we headed home for a nap instead.  We’ll have to check that out some other time!

The kids and their rides

The kids and their rides

We were quite a crowd

We were quite a crowd

Emma sampling her cake

Emma sampling her cake

Fellowship of the Cake

Fellowship of the Cake

Read Full Post »

Our first birthday party of 2013 was a combined party for the Sng siblings Joanie, who was turning 3, and Joash, who was turning 1.  Joanie is in love with all things Hello Kitty, and Joash is into Elmo, so the party centred on those two themes.

As always, Joanne is crazy and amazing.  She did up a wonderful kids snack table, and decorated the wall with photos of the kids in the past year.

Kitty & Elmo table

Kitty & Elmo table

Joanie's Year in Photos

Joanie’s Year in Photos

Joash's Year in Photos

Joash’s Year in Photos

The boys had a blast chasing after balloons in the strong wind, and burst a good many in the process.  It’s nice to see the kids growing up and being good friends.  Hope it keeps up!

Pretty Jo & Jo

Pretty Jo & Jo

Birthday Boy

Birthday Boy

Love how Joanne joined the cakes with the banner

Love how Joanne joined the cakes with the banner

 

Jo, Jo, Jo, Jo & Jo

Jo, Jo, Jo, Jo & Jo

All the kiddies and their parents

All the kiddies and their parents

Boy Band Wannabes

Boy Band Wannabes

 

Read Full Post »

The Party

We held the party at Temasek Club’s De Happy Ark.  We had gone there for my nephew Adam’s first birthday and thought it was a good location for a kids party.  There’s a very decent indoor playground, a party room for food, and a kids pool just outside.  Asher really enjoyed himself then and asked for his party to be held there.  It has the added convenience of being really close to our house.

Got there earlier to set up the banner and the various activity stations.  Had made Asher and Ellery take a nap before the party so that they’d not get cranky halfway.  It was a miracle that Asher napped.  He hadn’t been napping well, if at all, for the previous few weeks, and immediately after his party day he continued his poor napping habits.  It was only on that day alone that he napped on time.  I had been prepping him the whole week but was still skeptical that he would actually do it.

Banner up!

Banner up!

Craft station to make wooden and paper planes

Craft station to make wooden and paper planes

Wooden plan was Del's idea.  Cute huh?

Wooden plan was Del’s idea. Cute huh?

Anya was the only one who tried all the stations I think!

Think Anya was the only one who tried all the stations!

Jane making a plane with Kaizer

Jane making a plane with Kaizer

Dawn & Austin.  Austin does some great colouring!

Dawn & Austin. Austin does some great colouring!

I think the kids had fun running around the playground and playing with the riding toys.  After I put up the pinata, the boys were the ones who naturally gravitated towards it and knew instinctively what to do with it.  I had to stop them and tell them to wait for the actual  game in case my pinata burst before the game began!  I wasn’t sure yet how strong the pinata was.

Joanie going for a ride

Joanie going for a ride

The sign says "Please do not climb" haha

The sign says “Please do not climb” haha :)

Del & Adam

Del & Adam

Daddy corner

Daddy corner

My brother & my cousin Lincoln!

My brother & my cousin Lincoln!

Family shot!  One extra child - Josiah! :)  He was such a good boy to hold Lincoln so well though.  Ellery looks like he's been caught red-handed irritating his cousin (although in his defence, Adam was already crying :) )

Family shot! One extra child – Josiah! :) He was such a good boy to hold Lincoln so well. Ellery looks like he’s been caught red-handed irritating his cousin (although in his defence, Adam was already crying :) )

The string turned out to be the weak link.  I hadn’t tied it securely enough around the pinata before paper marche-ing over it.  Josiah had given such a powerful hit that the pinata came right off the string after the second hit!  We ended up tying it by the tail.  In the end the pinata was quite strong and Jon needed to help give it a good whack before it broke open.  I had only done 2 layers of paper marche and it felt quite thin.  Was surprised it was as strong as it was.  Starch is quite surprising.

Josiah's powerful whack!

Josiah’s powerful whack!

Asher's giving it his best shot

Asher’s giving it his best shot

It was fun to see the kids rush for the goodies.  I was particularly impressed with Kaizer because he went for the choicest pick of the toys.  He has some allergies so he knew he couldn’t eat the wafers and jellies, so he focused on the toys and got a pretty good selection of stuff :)  Most of the other kids went for the snacks.

Cheong ah!

Cheong ah!

Divvying the spoils

Divvying the spoils

Airplane hat anyone?

Airplane hat anyone?

Tearing it up after

Tearing it up after

Ellery was easily content.  He found one jelly and asked to eat it.  He then spent the next 15-20 minutes sucking on it!  He couldn’t get the bottom bit out but kept on trying anyway.  When it comes to food that boy sure is persistent.

Slurrrppp

Slurrrppp

Enjoying their treats

Enjoying their treats

Asher was mightly pleased with the cake.  Thankfully most of the guests said the cake tasted ok.  I was a little worried it wouldn’t taste good!  That’s the risk with making your own cake and trying a new recipe all at the same time!

Added the wafer bits to add some interest to the cake.  Not sure it was a good idea though.

Added the wafer bits to add some interest to the cake. Not sure it was a good idea though.

Happy Birthday to Asher!

Happy Birthday to Asher!

Happy brothers :)

Happy brothers :)

Most of the kids

Most of the kids

Eyeing Joanie's cake

Eyeing Joanie’s cake

After more playing we eventually moved outdoors for some swimming.  The weather was fine and I was glad the kids could have some outdoor time.  Most of them were very happy sliding down a slope at the pool.  But Asher and Jo Claire had their own plans.  It almost seemed as if they were on some romantic date.  They’d swim together, follow each other around.  At one point Asher asked, “shall we go to the deep end together?” Haha!  It was very cute :)

Martinna with Evan, Jonathan, and Titus who liked hanging out with the other two

Martinna with Evan, Jonathan, and Titus who liked hanging out with the other two

Titus would wait for Jonathan before sliding down

Titus would wait for Jonathan before sliding down

At first...

At first…

...then...

…then…

...and

…and then

Splashing good time

Splashing good time

Overall, a good party and Asher was one happy kid!

IMG_9110

Read Full Post »

Oh how I love my little boy.

Still as active as he was in the belly.  Still as chatty as ever (if not more so).  Still quite emo.  Still has one of the most infectious laughs and smiles anywhere.  He’s grown so much this year, and surprisingly matured more in the last few weeks (a lot to do with his change of school too I think, more on this in another post).

But he has grown.  And he’s still my little boy :)

My big little boy who still likes to cuddle with Mummy, who likes to wrestle with Daddy and his brother, who is so curious, who can be such a home-body sometimes, who loves military things just like his Gong Gong, who very often still pretends to be a dinosaur to the amusement/annoyance of those around him, and he’s still oblivious to their opinion.  Still innocent that way.

Just four.

Yes there are many things one could say about how four-year old kids are big, grown up little people.  But for today, I’m remembering and cherishing Asher’s smallness, youngness, pureness – childness.

———————————————————————————-

The Preparation

We settled on a plane theme this year because he’s been going on and on and on and on about planes, in particular the B2 stealth bomber, ever since my father introduced it to him.  He’s also into Transformers and in recent months more into the Decepticons, who tend to be planes, rather than the Autobots.  So it was quite a no brainer.

The things we prepared this year were a B2 stealth bomber T-shirt (made from scrap black fabric and a faded Transformers T-shirt), a Starscream plane pinata to knock out of the sky, and a B2 stealth bomber cake.  There was much less work than for last year’s dinosaur themed party because I didn’t include any cookies in the goody bag, so there was much less baking involved.

Bumblebee had faded away. B2 takes over!

B2 bomber boy

Most of the preparations were done at night after everyone else had gone to sleep.  But I did try to involve Asher where I could.  I think its a little more personal, meaningful and fun when he helps out.  Then it’s not just me pottering about and gearing up for party day.  It helps build some excitement.  And I’d like to think Asher would feel good that he had a hand in things.

Mixing the water and flour

Cutting strips of newspaper (classifieds are perfect for this)

The pinata was my biggest endeavour.  And way fun!  I remember playing with a pinata when I was maybe six at a family friend’s house.  They were Mexican and the pinata was a standard at their parties.  I remember clearly that first time how much fun it was and since Asher was born was waiting for a time when he’d be old enough to play with a pinata at one of his parties.  The time had come!

We used a balloon we received from a birthday party we attended 2 weeks before as the core.  We made the paper marche glue together.  Asher attempted to stick some of the newspapers, but he found it much to sticky for his liking.  Reminded me of when he was a baby playing with some sticky dough.  In the end, to my great great great great (times infinity) surprise, Jon stepped in to help!  Shock!  I would never ever expect that he would ever help in any of our craft activities, cos…he’s Jon!  But he did!  And he said it was fun!  And he then told me about how he used to play with paper marche very often as a kid, using it to make houses and other stuff.  I. Did. Not. Know. That.  Maybe it’s hard for you to comprehend my shock.  But if you know him and what he normally does on a day to day basis, you’d be as shocked as I.

Of course I lavished him with praise.  Positive reinforcement right?

Jon amazing me with his paper marche savvy

Over the course of the next few days I worked on the frame and decoration of the pinata while watching too much rubbish TV.  I was pleased with the result though!  Kids are the perfect excuse to do all kinds of craft you wish you did when you were younger :)  It was a good example of recycling too.  Asher likes to ask to recycle all sorts of scraps, so it was nice to show him what you could do with the scraps.

Frame made with cereal boxes and a KFC brouchure :)

Asher was excited to see the pinata coming along, and eager helped with stuffing goodies into it.  Also  squeezed a spelling activity out of the banner making.  Had to help him quite a bit though.  “Happy Birthday” is quite long and not all of it easy to sound out.

Stuffing the pinata with balloons, which turned out to be impossible to blow up. Hadn’t thought of the practicality of it when I bought it, just thought it was a nice colourful addition to the loot :)

Decepticon logo for Starscream

Filled and ready to be whacked

Helping with the banner

Pleased as punch to be turning four

The last big thing was to do the cake.  This we did one day before the party.  Asher had given specific instructions several weeks ago though.  He wanted a B2 stealth bomber cake.  The inside would not be chocolate, it would be plain cake (“vanilla?”, “yes, vanilla”).  The outside would be covered in chocolate.

Thankfully the B2 is quite an easy shape to replicate.  It’s flatish, and has a simple zigzaggy pattern.

(Source: http://www.airforce-technology.com/projects/b2/b21.html)

Well, at least it looked easy.  I had baked two rectangle trays of simple vanilla sponge cake, and the general idea was that it would have to be cut in a triangularish shape, then with the scraps piece together the rest of the wing and the tops.  I spent longer than expected mulling over how to maximize the amount of cake while still making sure there was enough cut out to make the rest of the plane.  And there was no room for error cos we had to deliver that cake that night!  Thankfully in the end the dimensions were fairly passable.

Assembling the cake

After adding the ganache

There was a little piranha next to me throughout the assembly process though.  Whenever there was a little scrap I didn’t need, it would suddenly disappear in a flash.  I suppose that way I had less crumbs to clean up.

ummm yummm yummm

All that was left were the party packs.  We went old school with the stuff.  Besides some very cool (well, I think it’s cool anyway) gummies I found on Amazon.com, which had among the various designs Asher’s favourite B2, we stuffed the bags with snacks that kids’ parents would have eaten when they were kids.

Airplane gummies.  Check out the B2!

Old school party pack – colourful round wafer, coklat krim wafer, white rabbit, parachute men, airplane gliders, and the gummies

Newspaper goody bags – I always feel party bags are such a waste cos we usually just throw them away! Of course, the proper bags are much hardier and nicer looking :)

We were all set for the party!  More in the next post!

Read Full Post »

Sophia had a Spot themed birthday party.  There was an adorable Spot cake, and cute doggie balloons for the kids to bring home.

Cute spot cake

Spot Banner

There was even a body paint artist at the party and the kids had their first body art ever, yes even for Asher!  Asher asked for a dinosaur, and Ellery asked for a whale (I prompted him with a choice of elephant, giraffe, whale, dinosaur, etc).  I was surprised that Ellery could sit so still while his whale was being painted.  I had expected him to fidget and squirm all over the place, but he sat patiently and watched while the artist painted his arm.  I think he really knew what was going on, especially after watching Asher.

With the artist

Ellery sitting still while she painted

Showing off their body art

Asher playing the part of the dinosaur

Ellery also discovered another fun part of parties – junk food!  He happily plonked himself next to a big bowl of (apparently healthy) chips and munched away.  Try as I might to limit the amount he ate by carrying him away to some other part of the room, he always wandered back and grabbed some more.  Hmm…I think my mother will say he’s like me when I was little.  Apparently I’d do nothing but eat throughout many of the kid parties I went for :O)

Reaching in…

…and munch munch munch

Ellery was elated to be given a dog balloon!

2 little dinos

 

Read Full Post »

Ellery spent his first birthday shuttling from place to place.  First church, then Aunty Evelyn’s house, then to Orchard to pick up a pink logcake that JC had requested for, and then off to Woodlands for a Christmas party.

Lots of playing and lots of attention.  You can’t go wrong with that combination on your birthday :)

Birthday hug

New shoes from Por Por & Kung Kung that they didn't realise made squeaking sounds until Ellery wore them :) Ellery was very amused and happily stomped his feet all the more.

Playing at the kids room in church

Asher happy with his balloon he got in church. Actually the balloon man had finished his shift, so I just asked for a long balloon and twisted it into a 'fish' myself. That's about the only thing I could think of making that might pass off as the actual animal!

At Aunty Evelyn's house. Getting some balloons of his own :)

Loving Jo Claire's ball pit tent

Like really loving it. Ellery couldn't stop crawling in and out of it. "Boh! Boh!"

JC and Asher learning how to pop champagne from Joe

Read Full Post »

This is SUCH an overdue post!

Yes, I’m backdating it to the actual day as is my usual practice (I’m a bit OCD that way, I like knowing exactly which day things happened).  But this is one month overdue!!!

Gosh.

But moving on…

———————————————————————————————————————-

On top of celebrating Ellery’s birthday we thought it’d be a great opportunity catch up with friends and relatives, so many of which we hardly get a chance to meet with on a day-to-day basis. Afterall, Christmas is a time for such things isn’t it?  So the party ended up being quite big, and our house was filled to capacity.  Every space was occupied, and I think it got a little cramp at one point because the caterer arrived more than an hour late so our guests were lumped together!  We had organised it such that the kids party was in the morning and the relatives would arrive in the afternoon.  But as lunch came late, the morning and afternoon crowd were crowded together for a good hour or more!  Everyone was very polite and kind though.

Homemade Christmas mobile

Thankfully the food was good – we catered from Samy’s Curry – although a little too salty and spicy for some.  Maybe next year we’ll cater Northern Indian since that tends to be less spicy.  It was a toss-up between Samy’s and Curry Garden, and this year Samy’s fish cutlet edged out :)

Indian food for Christmas

The kids seemed happy enough and didn’t seem to mind the crowd.  I had prepared several play areas to entertain the little ones.  In the living room the kids could help themselves to Asher and Ellery’s toys.  I had also made two cardboard playhouses for the kids.  The first was a 3-room playhouse which I put in the boy’s bedroom.  I had intended for their room to be the role-playing area (dress up clothes, masak-masak, pretend food were left there).

The 3-room cardboard house

Kids playing in the house

The other was like a cardboard mansion, complete with chimney, flowerbox and shingles, which I placed in the common area outside our house.  I had planned for the kids to decorate the house as they pleased, but here I discovered an interesting thing.  When the house was just unadorned cardboard, children are happy to draw all over it (as Asher and my neighbours kids showed), but once I pasted white paper all over (the intention was for their scribblings to be more obvious), not a single kid drew on the house!  That was something totally unexpected.  I guess they are all too well trained – no drawing on walls!  The white paper made the house have white walls, and made the house look too ‘made-up’ to draw on.  Inside though they were happy to draw on the walls since no paper was pasted there!  That phenomenon was so interesting to me.

Ellery was quite happy to play alongside the other kids, and I think he knew something special was going on because that night before he went to sleep he kept sitting up and clapping with a HUGE smile on his face :)  I don’t know whether he was remembering people singing his birthday song, or he was just happy.  I’d like to think he felt it was a special day :)

"Ball" was his word of the day

He really liked the rocking horse we rented from the Toy Rental Club

To mark the uniqueness of his birthday, we got log cakes instead of regular cakes as his birthday cake.  One for the morning kid’s session, and one for the relatives.  We thought it’d be fun for the kids to eat log cake too :)

Chocolate log cake for the kid's party

Hazelnut log for the adults

Thinking back on Ellery’s birthday, though, there are several things I would have done differently.  First, I would have given more thought to what he was wearing!  It was only on the day itself that I picked out something, and it was fairly random at that.  For some reason I thought he should wear something new that day, something not handed down, and had on hand just 2 t-shirt choices.  I let him pick, and he chose the t-shirt with colourful pictures of ice-cream.  I think I should have dressed him better since he was the birthday boy, something with a collar :)  Now everytime I put something on him that I like I keep thinking, shucks, I should have let him wear that on his birthday.  Not that I didn’t like his t-shirt, but it wasn’t dressed up enough I think :)  I guess with him I don’t dress him up as much as I did Asher.  Partly cos he’s usually doing casual things with me so hand-me-downs and casual t-shirts are more comfortable.  I don’t know, for some reason I really didn’t give it much thought.  I think I was more preoccupied with preparing the cardboard houses, doing up the handmade decor, etc.

I would also have asked someone to help take photos!  My camera, the Nikon Coolpix S9100 is really horrid.  Half the pictures are blurry.  We had bought it on the spur of the moment cos our previous camera was spoilt.  But I think I should have looked harder.  Beside the quality of pictures, I also simply didn’t have the capacity to take nice pics.  I was quite busy entertaining guests, checking on the arrival of food, getting other food prepared in the meantime for the kids, playing with the kids, etc.  But I’ve no regrets on that too since I was enjoying the moment.  I really liked catching up with friends, and watching the kids play.  I guess photos are really secondary, when it comes down to it.  That said, anyone with nice pics from that day please send to me! :O)

The last thing, though unlikely to change, is to have a bigger house haha!  I liked having the house be so bustling with people but it really would be more comfortable with more space!

All in all, I think it went well though :)

————————————————————————————————————————

Ellery, my dear boy, Mummy loves you no end!  I think there hasn’t been a day since you were born that I don’t say, “You are so cute!!  I cannot take it!!”  Of course, parents are intrinsically biased.  I love looking into your big eyes, I love when you give your megawatt smile that looks like it’s going to burst from your face, I love how chubby you are, how you like to pat people on the shoulder when they carry you as if you are saying “good job!”.  You are so nice to carry cos you’re filled out :)  But you are mighty heavy!  From quite early on I could not bring you out without using the Ergo.  When you choose to be wiggly you can be quite hard to hang on to because you are so strong.  You may be chubby but it’s not flabby at all!  You’re one tough little boy.

The two words I hear the most when people talk about you is “cheerful” and “big” :)  You have really turned out to be a cheerful boy, living up to your name!  You do have a temper though, which you showed towards the end of your first year.  If your toy gets snatched or you don’t get your way you can really cry.  Yes, you are macho and you have big lungs.

You are fearless, which can be quite alarming for me.  But it’s also refreshing since your brother can be quite cautious.  I hope the two of you will influence each other positively :)

Besides our house, the other place you see all the time is Asher’s school.  All the teachers and his classmates know you.  When we arrive in the morning it’s, “Hello Asher!  Hello Ellery!”.  You have a big fan club in his class, and your biggest fans are the girls.  Oh, how they pat you and kiss you and hug you!  Sometimes you trigger funny questions from his classmates like, “Aunty, how come Ellery doesn’t want to talk to me?” :)))  Now, you are so comfortable with them you’re as good as part of his class.  Asher’s teacher, Ms F, also adores you since you and her son are just 3 days apart.  You like her very much and often ask her to carry you.

You’ve been saying quite a few words like “ball”, “bir” (bird), “mama”, “deh” (daddy), “tar” (star), among others.  You moo when you hear the word cow or see a cow, you go baa when you see a sheep or hear the word sheep, and you say woof to the dog as well :)  It’s very cute :)

As for toys, you really like cars.  You’ll take cars and zoom around the living room making a ‘vroom’ sound.  Actually any toy with wheels you’ll do that.  And you’ve taken to dinosaurs too.  Yes, that’s one of the first words you said, “di!” for dinosaur, now progressing to “di-nor-nor”.  You “rah!!” like Asher, complete with the pretend claws.  Will I end up with two dino maniacs?

In the playground your absolute favorite part is the slide.  You’d go up and down all day long if I didn’t drag you away.  The other thing you enjoy is the steering wheel.

Contrary to everyone’s expectation you didn’t walk by your first birthday.  But I suspect you were trying to prove you independence and prove everyone wrong huh? :)

You and Asher play really well together and I’m so happy I have you two boys.  The instant you see Asher in the morning you light up and give the hugest grin, which Asher immediately reciprocates :)  What a nice way to wake up :)

You may be my second boy, and a lot of people ask me if I wish I had a girl (and there was even someone who said it would be nice if you had been a girl), or ask if I will be trying for a girl, but Ellery, always know that Mummy loves you so very much.  You are special, you are unique, you are irreplaceable.  Mummy and Daddy love you lots, but more than that, God loves you!  *muak*

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Read Full Post »

Baby Jovinia had her full month party with friends and relatives of Janine and Desmond.  I forget how small newborns are.  I may have two kids, but I don’t dare to carry her!  Alex was excellent with her though.  Jovinia was so comfortable she fell soundly asleep, and earned Alex a job offer from Janine :)  Meanwhile, Asher was tossing roti prata at his stall using a round mousepad he got his hands on :)

Hi!!

Jovinia fell soundly asleep in Alex's arms

Flipping 'roti pratas'

Read Full Post »

Asher’s birthday was preceeded by a lot of activity, in particular a lot of baking.  We baked cookies for the gift pack, made chocolates, and baked a cake too.  A couple of weeks before I was chatting with my cousin, Del, over coffee about Asher’s birthday and she mentioned a cake she read about where someone had buried toy dinosaurs inside, and I thought that was a great idea!  A dino dig cake!  Asher would love that!  I spent the next few weeks dreaming up the ideal cake.  I love baking, so it was a lot of fun for me to think about what kind of cake would be yummy and then to go find recipes to try.

Initially I thought of making meringue dinosaurs fossils to dig up, since those would be edible.  But my meringues got so soft and sticky in our hot and humid weather they simply would not do.  So decided to just stuff dinosaur toys inside, nevermind that they weren’t fossil toys (since you can only dig up fossils, right? Not dinosaurs all fleshed out.  It’s a technicality I think most people will overlook heh).  In the end I settled on a 2-layer chocolate sponge cake (each layer made with slightly different ingredients, like adding crushed biscuits, and altering the type of sugar used), and chocolate-oreo icing, topped with crushed oreo biscuit ‘soil’, and baked some stegasaurous cookie ‘fossils’ and a number 3 for decoration.

Helping to stuff dinosaurs into the cake

Grid pattern so I remember where to cut!

Besides the baking, the lead up to the birthday was actually quite uncertain.  Asher suddenly fell quite ill two days before his party and we found out it was a stomach flu bug.  We contemplated cancelling his party.  On Thursday, the first day of his illness, his condition was quite severe and we brought him to the doctor who said he’d probably be well in two days and would be ok for the event.  On Friday his condition had greatly improved and were thankful he was better.  He was still a little lethargic at times, and he himself knew he needed to rest more, so he took extra naps and slept earlier at night.

He was ok for the party on Saturday and we assessed he was well enough to be with his friends since Ellery, who was in close proximity with him throughout, was still fine.  We certainly didn’t want him passing anything on!  He has good memories of his party (he talks about his cake and about playing with his friends), though I think he would have enjoyed it even more had he been in tip top condition.  He was still a little lethargic that morning, and took a nap during his party!  But think that nap was what he needed, because after that he was more lively.  A week later when we went to Turf City again, he remembered his party, talked about it and wanted to play at the playground again :)

I was telling Jon how unfortunate it was that he caught a bad bug so close to his birthday.  He hasn’t been so ill in more than a year!

Anyway about his party proper.

We decided to hold it at Sol Playground Cafe at Turf City since there was a sheltered outdoor playground as well as an indoor play area for younger kids.  Many of our guests have two kids now, so the facilities at Sol suited us well.  Plus, there’s free parking!  Jon was mighty pleased when it started to drizzle because it vindicated his insistence on the venue as it allowed the children to play even in wet weather.  I duly gave him all the necessary praise on his foresight ;)

The indoor play area

We also decided to go with a dinosaur theme because Asher is in love with them.  Really.  Totally in love with them.  If he could, he would be at dinosaur.  His ambition used to be a paleontologist.  Now, if you ask him what his ambition is, he’ll say its to be a dinosaur – “I actually want to be a dinosaur” (emphasis all his).  So dino we went.  Everything was dino related – from the party packs to the decor to the cake.  And he couldn’t be more pleased!

Christmas and dinosaurs

Dino pack - cookies, chocolates, stamps, tattoos and toys

Diving into his unwrapped present from Del, and telling us about one of the sauropods

Happy birthday Asher! Several days before his birthday I asked which was his favourite dinosaur, and he said stegasaurus, so I decided to go with that for the fossil :) But I realise that his favourite dino actually changes from day to day!

Asher! Whenever he plays with his blocks he always says this is him because he has a red hat too.

Eating up the fossils!

He used the toy shovel to eat the cake!

I must say that the staff there were very attentive and accomodating.  They allowed our guests flexible ordering, meaning they could mix-and-match items on the menu, order other things not on the menu, or make special requests for whatever reason (dietary or taste preferences).  The food was quite good and apparently, according to one of my friends who had been there before, the standard has improved a lot.  It was actually our first time eating there!

Kaizer and Titus stamping away on the colouring sheets

Adrian, Adam, Del & Anya

Joanne & Jo Claire

Hello?

The kids, even the older ones, enjoyed the indoor play area, and after finishing their food everyone ventured outside to play at the playground.  For a while the boys hogged the playhouse, and we dubbed it the boys club.  They didn’t allow any girls to go in at all.  Later on it morphed into a juice stall, and eventually that business closed down and the girls could go inside again :)

Standing guard at the boys club

No girls! Poor JC left outside

Playing with the windows - open, close, open, close...

Roof Party with Josiah

I was happy to see the kids getting along, refering to each other their friends.  Some of them see each other only once a year at Asher’s birthday.  I’m grateful that there’s a bunch of close friends and family who have kids around the same age as us.  It’s really nice to have people in the same life stage as you.  And in particular, some of them have a very similar outlook on parenting so we’re quite on the same wavelength.  I hope that this bunch will continue to be close, and that our kids will be close as they grow up!

Ellery likes slides!

Peeking in with Joanie

Heather scooting about

Family huddle

My cheeky dinosaur

After the party, we headed home and Asher thoroughly enjoyed his treat of being allowed to watch and entire DVD worth of Tractor Tom!  We came to know of this series when Asher received the video as a gift from his Aunts from UK.  Aunty Radha, Sheela – he loves it!

Being a couch potato at home

To end on a funny note, when I about to bathe Ellery in the evening I was surprised to see he had a dino tattoo on his arm!  I had no idea it was there at all because it had been hiding under this sleeves the entire afternoon.  I felt like a mother discovering her son’s little secret :)  Wonder who put it on him?

Joined a dino gang and didn't tell Mummy

Read Full Post »

« Newer Posts - Older Posts »