Prepping for the Peter Pan party

This year, we have chosen to have the twins’ 5th birthday party at a live performance of Peter Pan- which means I don’t have to think about any other entertainment.  But I do love the theme- and am going a little crazy with decorations and favors.  There are so many great ideas on pinterest- that I found so much inspiration, it was hard for me to narrow it down. All decorations were etsy purchases.  All the kids will have their choice to be a pirate, Peter Pan, or a fairy.  In addition to pixie dust, I also have foam pirate swords.  Our pinata is tic-toc-croc, per the girls’ request. In addition to candy, the pinata will also have pirate eye patches and pirate & pixie stampers.  Hand made favor bags include a paint your own tic-toc-croc, a green lollipop and a Little Golden Books’ Peter Pan.  Fondant toppers are on order for the cupcakes. Anything not decorated will get a Peter Pan silhouette sticker (see cups!).  Hopefully I am not forgetting anything!

I have less than 4 weeks to prep for this party and for the Princess Party the day after- so here is what I have done so far for the Neverland event!

Peter Pan party

Peter Pan party


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Creating our own Pixie Dust!

As I type in the title for this post, I am starting to think we are a little Peter Pan obsessed! And maybe we are. Or maybe myself and my middle Bee are and the other two little Bees could care less… which is most likely.  They are pushing for a princess party, but since I reserved our Peter Pan event months ago, off to Never Land we go!

In anticipation of having back-to-back birthday parties in about 9 weeks, I thought I would start some prep work now.  Invitations have been printed (thanks to etsy) and now I am starting to think of favors. Thank goodness for Pinterest! I found several types of Pixie Dust favors online and using them as inspiration, I bought:

Glitter- 16 oz. for $6 Michaels- or pay more online like I did [sigh]-

Cork Jar Favors (set of 18) – $15 with coupon –

And I found “pixie dust” labels on etsy, printed them and hole-punched the top.

cork favor jars

cork favor jars

labels & ribbon

labels & ribbon

I made a siphon out of a post card and started to spoon 3 heaping spoonfuls of glitter into each jar. While doing this, some dust sprinkled out on to the table and I noticed my youngest Bee grabbing it and sprinkling it over her head. I think she was hoping it would be enough pixie dust to help her fly, so I had to ask her not to fly away tonight.

siphoning the dust

siphoning the dust

When all the bottles were full, I corked them and added the labels using green sparkling curling ribbon. I had enough glitter left that I could have probably filled all 18 bottles to the top! And now I have to hide these from my Bees or else I might find them doused in pixie dust and ready for flight!

homemade pixie dust

homemade pixie dust

Why we need a bigger house!

Six years ago, when we moved into our 1,840 sq.ft. house from our one bedroom apartment, I did not know what to do with all the extra space.  A library? Den? Office? Gym? A three bedroom house for two people is pretty vast.  We decided on an office and a guest bedroom for the two extra bedrooms. I took the time to shop for furniture and decor to strategically decorate my blank canvas.  And now- nearly six years and three little bees later, we are busting out the seams.  The new theme of decor that is consistent throughout the house is laundry… dirty, clean/wrinkled (because I haven’t had a chance to fold ), and then the socks and pj’s poking out from under the couches and tables-probably clean- but I throw them in the dirty pile just in case.
Anyway- this is not a rant about laundry (of which I could do daily), but rather about how quickly we outgrew our cozy little cottage.
The “office” and “guest bedroom” have been long re-designated as nursery/bedrooms, but the girls choose to sleep in one bedroom.  All three together in the queen-size former guest bed. The other bedroom has a twin bed with a trundle, but for some reason not one of the girls will sleep in there.  It has been unoccupied for nearly two years.


I am guessing it is because they do not want to be alone.  So now we end up with three in a bed. And they are growing pretty quickly. I would love to find a house with a bedroom for each and have them all sleep alone, because I am not sure how much longer this will last (though I do find it endearing right now!).

A Birthday Carnival for my Three Bees

These three busy bees have more young boy friends than girls. It can be a challenge when planning parties, because as much as they love princesses, I am not sure all boys (or even some girls) do. So this year I decided on a Carnival theme.  Fortunately, I was able to use some display items from our Candy Land theme party.  And the girls added a Lalaloopsy twist wearing their favorite Lala dresses!

Every party needs centerpieces.  I used popcorn containers ($1 each at Target or the Dollar Store) and lined the bottom with foam to hold the balloon sticks.  Once the balloons were snug, I filled to the top with popcorn.

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I was able to get the Carnival sign and silly Carnival drink labels (which did not adhere too easily) online at a party store.  I also set up a photo station with props and clown noses. I adhered double-sided tape to Carnival frame favors so that everyone could take photos using the Polariod camera and stick their photos right on to the Carnival frame.

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For Carnival entertainment, we had a Clown Toss (bean bags), the Duck Pond and the Ring Toss.

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Also had popcorn and cotton candy makers to surround us with the Carnival scent and played Carnival music in the background.

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A magician provided some laughs and entertainment for all.


The clown pinata was full of sweet treats (but note to self: no chocolate treats in July!).


Party favors included Carnival themed water bottles, juggling balls set, kazoos, animal crackers and stickers.  Dessert consisted of a cake (elephant, lion and clown) for each of my three Bees and clown cupcakes.  I made the cakes myself- I am getting more & more experimental with fondant.


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Outfit change just in time for birthday cake!


My silly Bees dressing up as Lalas!


Peter Pan themed bedroom

Along with Peter Pan’s shadow, I added some other little touches to bring the magic of Neverland into their bedroom.  I bought a Peter Pan book that had large, colorful pages and cut two pages out and framed them in frames I purchased from the Christmas Tree Shoppes (for $5 each). I made the Peter Pan outfit from green felt. The girls take turns wearing it… to pieces…

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My father found the dollhouse out in someone’s trash! Can you believe that? It is obviously hand-made and with such detail. More of an heirloom than trash.  It is definitely getting a 2nd life with my 3 Busy Bees. And- it reminds me of a house that the Darling’s would live in.

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I did resort to the Disney Store for the soft dolls.  And found a Tick-Tock Croc Clock on clearance ($15!), so I could not pass him up!

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At this point, we can add mermaids, pirates, Indian princesses… so much to consider. But this was my start.

Peter Pan’s Shadow

So my middle Bee, Ava, has been a fan of all the characters of Peter Pan since she was two.  All of my Bees love pirates and mermaids, so I thought that Peter Pan could be inspiration to decorate the room they all share. (Why do all three share the same room?  While one room remains consistently empty? See past post…)

I did not want to get totally Disney-fied (as much as we do love Disney and all three Bees love the Disney Peter Pan movie)- so instead I searched the web.  I loved the silhouettes- particularly in light of the part of the book/movie where Peter Pan loses his shadow and has to return to the Darling house to retrieve it.   Yet the vinyl clings for sale were ridiculously priced.  So leave it to me to think of a cheap alternative.  All you need is a flash light, chalk, a cut out of a Peter Pan silhouette of choice (Google “Peter Pan”- or anything for that matter- silhouette and you will find tons), acrylic paint and a stain brush.

After printing out your silhouette of choice, cut it to the best possible precision. To figure out where to place it on your wall, take the silhouette and a flash light and use the light to make a shadow. You can move it closer or further out to make the image larger or smaller.   photo (27) photo (25)

Once you have decided on a location- you get to the tricky part.  You will either need another set of hands to hold the cutout in place while you trace the shadow with chalk on the wall, or you can prop the cutout with anything that will keep it in place. I used a large text book. In any case, you want to outline the shadow in its entirety with chalk.  Once you are done- turn off your flashlight and turn on a bright light to make sure you are happy with your silhouette.  Touch up where necessary and once it is ready, take out your acrylic paint and brush and fill in the outline.  I used a smoky grey color to give it the appearance of Peter Pan’s missing silhouette.

Peter Pan's Shadow

Peter Pan’s Shadow



Olivia’s 1st Birthday in Candyland!

I had a lot of fun decorating for Olivia’s 1st birthday party!
I made the hanging candies with large colorful paper lanterns wrapped in clear cellophane and tied with ribbon. The lollipops were balloons wrapped in cellophane and bows, attached to PVC piping I bought at Home Depot (I asked them to cut it there).
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I bought books of candy themed stickers and solid paper hats and set up a “decorate your own party hat!” station. I also downloaded some Candyland themed coloring pages and set them out with markers for a candy themed coloring station.



For centerpieces, each table had a different colored basket filled with tons of sweets- including the “thank you for making my birthday so sweet!”  lollipop favors.  Olivia wore a candy decorated onesie with a bright pink tutu. I bought iron-on letters and added “It’s my party” to the back of her outfit.


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Other favors included a “fill your own favor” – with candies & cupcakes from the Sweet Station and each child received a Candy Land game.


Olivia’s 1st birthday party was such a sweet day!


Photos courtesy of Cyndee Stanton Photography.