Bee had several ideas for her birthday party this year, but we decided on a pink pajama party. Bee's birthday is a little before Valentine's day, so hearts were the perfect motif. Invites were simple cards with a sewn on heart slipped into envelopes we made following this tutorial. Bee personally delivered them to all her friends (these envelopes are awfully cute, but I wouldn't try to mail them!).
We blew up a ton of balloons to throw around the house, which is much easier if your husband takes over and blows them up with his air compressor. I usually get a dozen or so helium balloons for a party, but you can about 5 dozen unfilled balloons for the same price, and when it comes to balloons... I say the more, the merrier.
Our party started at 9 AM, and we asked the kids to come in their pajamas (and bring their pillows with them). The kids seemed to get a kick out of showing up in their pjs, and they looked awfully cute all together. Bee requested a number shirt like I always make C for his birthday, so I freezer paper stenciled a 5 in a heart. One benefit of an early party is that it forces you to have everything ready the night before, there's no time to rush around and finish things in the morning, which is great if you are a procrastinator like myself.
When the kids first arrived we sat at the table and made valentine's... kind of like a kid version of Martha's crafternoon. We had punches and crayons and paper and stickers and the kids did a great job all on their own (I thought it was sweet that most of the kids chose to make cards for their moms).
We spread blankets out and had the kids lie down on their pillows while we read a few of Bee's favorite picture books... JR makes a very convincing pigeon.
During the stories, I took one girl at a time and painted their nails. Bee is a nail biter and I have NEVER let her paint her nails... I said that would be her reward if she could stop biting her nails. A few weeks before the party she showed me her hand so I could see that she had stopped, and much to Bee's delight, we got to paint fingernails at the party!
We used some old pillowcases for sack races in the backyard. We did several heats since the kids were much faster than I thought! We also played "musical pillows", which is just like musical chairs except you jump on a pillow when the music stops.
One game that we made up on the spot was the pillow long jump, seeing how far each child could jump in one jump.. and if they fall, they land on a bunch of pillows! We also played pin the heart on Bee (instead of pin the tail on the donkey).
We kept the food simple: little pink pancakes with strawberry jam and whipped cream, fruit skewers, and orange juice. (It gets busy trying to serve nine five year olds pancakes all at the same time, so forgive me for not having a photo!) I think pancakes are the perfect kid party food.. they all love pancakes and it's nice to be able to make one thing instead of sandwiches where I feel I need to make three varieties to make everyone happy.
We had blueberry muffins for "dessert" so Bee could blow her candles out, it just seemed a little early to be giving kids cake! All in all, a really fun party.. and one of the easier parties we've done in terms of planning. Happy birthday little Bee..