Last year I pulled out all the stops for an afternoon of swashbuckling fun as we held a Peter Pan birthday party for all three children at once. I don’t really do big parties but it turned out to be great fun to plan (I admit, I am a secret organising addict – the planning is 80% of the fun for me!) and having been in the Caribbean where celebrations are always cross-generational, it was lovely to have children and adults of all ages there. The costumes were lovely (mostly Tinkerbells with a few pirates and happily one Peter Pan!), Bertie made a marvellous Captain Hook (I can still see the children running away from him with shrieks of terror before being forced to walk the plank!) and showed unexpected talents at organising games for 30 very excited children. They enjoyed the treasure hunt and decorating treasure boxes to take home (made a nice alternative to goody bags) and I even stepped out of my comfort zone to make and decorate a treasure island cake. All of which to say it was fun, but a LOT of work (I can see why people go to McDonalds or the local soft play place!) and so I decided to take a break from big parties this year. CassCass had fun in the local soft play centre and LissaLou got to have a pizza lunch and trip to the forest with a few friends!
We did a make your own pizza lunch, trying out the little cake pans I bought at Wilkinsons for a bargain 89p each. They got quite excited with the toppings but I think they were very happy with the tasty result of all their hard work.
After the birthday cake (I took the easy option and went for store-bought) we set off for the forest nearby. First we visited the little farm area and enjoyed my favourite animals there, the meerkats (soo cute!), but it closes very early most the year so the kids then moved on to tree climbing whilst the men played cricket and the mums chatted.
They had such a lovely time running around in all the pen space and the weather was beautiful. We bumped into another friend and her children which livened the party up no end – though I am not sure that her son appreciated all the attention…
We decided to squeeze in a walk around the lake and through the woods, though as closing time was rapidly approaching, we tried not to linger too much. Some hope! Let a group of 10 excited children loose in the trees (aged from 12 to 1) and what do you have? No more children! Keeping them all together was quite a challenge and stopping them all from plunging into the stream was even more so!
This is such a beautiful place to visit and it was so good to see children out and about, enjoying the beauty of the natural world, connecting with each other, exploring, and not needing tvs, computer games, phones or any other material thing to keep them occupied. However, LissaLou still thinks she has been cheated out of a party!