Canvas for a newborn baby

When my sister had a baby two years ago I wanted to make something for my new niece, rather than buying her a gift. I decided to make a ‘scrap-canvas’:

I started by covering a canvas with vintage style paper. Then I cut up some netting, which I used as a second background. With scraps of red fabric, I glued a border at the bottom of the canvas, and disguised the top edge with orange ribbon. I cut the letters of her name from scrap fabric (which I bought on Ebay – a bag of scraps) and glued these onto the red fabric. The top part of the canvas is a combination of scrapbook stickers (again from Ebay) , scrap fabric, ribbons and buttons. I made a little windmill, as it symbolises Holland, where she is from. The Eiffel tower stands for Paris, where my sister lived in the past. I put all the birth details, like weight, time, date, etc in at random, around the canvas. I made the little flowers with ribbon and a button: basically, you cross over the ribbon in all directions, until it looks like a flower. You tighten it with needle and threat. Sew a button on top of the stitches. The best thing to do with the flowers is to sew them onto the canvas, rather than gluing them, it won’t hold otherwise. The best thing to use for all the other bits is a glue gun (they are pretty cheap, about €12 from the art shop).

I think scrapbooking is such a nice way to get rid of all types of bits and pieces. It’s a great way to maximise your creativity …

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Vintage handbag

I am struggling a bit to explain how I did this but I will give it a try 🙂

A few weeks ago I made this vintage style bag:

Vintage handbag

I made it with some left-over fabric, lace ribbon (i love it), bag handles and a button. I also used some fabric for lining (not on the photo). I got the bag handles on Ebay. Alternatively, you could use this shop: http://www.sewwhoareyou.co.uk/store/products/triangular-bag-handles/

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I started off by cutting a big rectangle from the fabric. I folded the fabric first. The side where the fold is, I used as the bottom of the bag. For the width I measured the length of the bag handles, and doubled this. For the length I left about 10 inches, this includes some extra for the hem at the top. I first used the zig-zag stitch all around the fabric to prevent it from fraying.

IMG_0561Then I stitched the sites together, after turning the fabric inside out, to make it into a bag. Leave about 3 inches on both sides open at the top, otherwise you won’t be able to open your bag!

Then I turned the bag outside-in again (can you say that?) and started pleating the fabric through the hole of the handles from the outside in. Try to do it as evenly as possible, and attach with a pin. Also bear in mind to pleat into the direction that you will be sewing it (if using a sewing machine). So if you are sewing it from left to right, you pleat it like this:

Pleating the fabric

If from right to left, you pleat it in the other direction.

IMG_0553Continue with the second handle. Then stitch the pleats with a needle and thread or the sewing machine. Make sure that you fold in the end as well and stitch them together as well.

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Now you are going to make the lining. Measure the bag as it is now and use the measurements plus half an inch extra, at the top, to cut the lining. Again, use the side with the fold as the bottom part of the lining. Again, use  the zig-zag stitch all around the fabric to prevent it from fraying. Then stitch the bag together inside out, leaving two inches at both sides open. Turn the lining outside in. Start pinning the top of the lining to the bag, whilst folding the hem. You can start with the top side that was left open. Once you have pinned it, start sewing it by hand. Using a very small stitch at the top of the hem and try not to let the needle go entirely through the outside material. If you manage to do that, you can make this stitch a bigger one, since you won’t see it.

If you look closely, you can see the very small stitch at the top of the hem

If you look closely, you can see the very small stitch at the top of the hem

After this, you can attached the lace ribbon, pleating it evenly again and stitching it with a small stitch where visible and again not letting the needle pass through the fabric entirely …

To finish it off I attached the button in the middle … And that’s it!

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St Patricksday top for a girl

This is a top I made for Abby, my eldest daughter.

St Patricksday girl's top

St Patricksday girl’s top

It’s very easy to do and all you need are a t-shirt (loose fitting) with long sleeves, scissors and green ribbon (about 8-10 feet).

You start cutting holes in the t-shirt like on the picture below. Always make two holes 1 inch apart on the left and the same on the right, like this:   I I      I I. I have used 7 rows of holes, but it is up to you.

St Patricks day top

St Patricks day top

Repeat this for the sleeves, just 1 – 3 rows. Start pulling the ribbon through from the bottom right (facing the shirt)). Stick it in and out throught the next hole (both on the right side), then cross diagonally to the row above and stick it into the two holes on the left side (facing the shirt), continue this up onto the last row, here you cross horizontally and cross diagonally downward this time, repeat until you have reached the last hole. Tie the ribbon into a nice not. 

Repeat this for the sleeves. Et Voila, the St Patricks day shirt is sorted. Whatever is left of the ribbon can be used for the hair …

Abby is wearing it with a tulle skirt from Claire’s.

Halloween Party at home/ forest

Appropriate age: 4-7

My son was born on the 30th of October so the Halloween theme really suits his birthday party. Last year I decided to have the party at home rather than in the forest because I was not sure what the weather was doing. However, you could also have this party in the forest. I printed invitations from a free website: http://www.greetingsisland.com/printables/holidays/halloween/1. You can even customise them before printing. Obviously, we asked all the kids to dress up in their scariest costumes. When everybody had arrived we all sat down in the living room and I started telling them the following story: Long time ago there was a little house in the forest in Ennis. In the house lived a little witch. She was a friendly witch and she was called Jammie.  On the other side of town lived a wicked wizzard in a haunted house. His name was Wark. 

One day the Wark came over to the Jammie’s house. Jammie was scared and would not open her door. Wark got very angry and told her that he would come back an put a spell on her.
Jammie decided to scare Wark and put a scare crow in her garden.
For the following activity, I divided the kids up in two teams.
Activity number 1: 
Find a bag with clothes and pick one person in your team to dress up as a scarecrow. The fastest team,  wins!
I used old clothes , a hat, a tie, big boots. The kids were asked to button up the shirts completely, if not they could not win.
When we finished playing the game we all sat down again and continued the story:
But one day Jammie came home and found the scarecrow tumbled over and the door of her house was open. She went inside and noticed that a few of her belongings were taken. Her crystal ball of all things was taken as well.
For the following activity, I had a good few Halloween themed items (small pumpkin, small bat, ghost, candle, etc.) You can also used pictures instead of items. that the kids had to remember. One person was asked to wait in the hallway and we would take one item out. The person who was waiting in the hallway had to guess what item was missing. The older the children, the more items you need to make it challenging.
Activity 2:
Memorise the items under the towel and guess which one is missing …
 
The story continues:
Jammie really wanted her crystal ball back and decided to go on a journey to Wark’s house to find her crystall ball. One morning she got up early and made a little picnic for the road. 
Activity 3:
Find a box with the picnic that Jammie made for the road.
 
I filled a bag with snacks (popcorn and crisps) which I hid under a big sheet that was hanging from the top of the stairs in the hallway to look like a ghost.It looked more like a Halloween decoration …
Then the story continues:
Jammie walked all day to get to Wark’s house. The house was deserted, nobody was at home. Jammie tried to get in but she did not manage. She walked around the house and found a little trail to the ened of the garden where she found her crystal ball, hanging off a tree.
Activity 4:
Find the crystall ball in the forest …
I used a pumpkin covered in tin foil as a crystal ball and hid it in the garden.
Once the crystal ball has been found, the story continues:
 
Jammie quickly got the ball out of the tree and ran off. However, Wark just came back from one of his evil missions, just in time to see Winnie run off with the crystall ball. He quickly put a spell on her. Jammie kept on running, but started to feel itchy all over her body.
Activity 5:
Bingo
Although it does not really relate to the story I always try to slot in a bingo because the kids really love it. This is a bingo that even the very young can play, since it uses pictures instead of numbers. I printed (free of charge!) from the following website:http://www.artsyfartsymama.com/2011/10/halloween-bingo-free-printable.html
You can print 6 different cards as well as one page with all the pieces on it.
You can buy some small halloween-related prices. Kids love erasers, pens, bubbles, …
After this we continue the story:
Jammie arrived home with the crystal ball but she could not stop scratching herself. She was itchy under her toes, behind her ears, under her finger nails, everywhere. She got her magic spell book and looked up the formula for the potion to stop the itch. She found it and started making the potion.
Activity 6: 
Find the ingredients for the potion to help Jammie. There should be 8 bottles hidden. Once you have found all the bottles, put it all into a cauldron to make the potion!
Halloween party in the garden

Halloween party in the garden

The ingredients were hidden everywhere in the garden. For example, there was golden syrup which was ‘snake’s slime’. Nutella was renamed ‘owl’s poo’, vinegar was called ‘snails tears’ , bread soda was called ‘magic dust’, Red food colouring was called ‘mouses blood’. Once all the ingredients were found we put them into a metal bucket and added the vinegar at the end. The result was a sizzling red potion, thanks to the combination of vinegar, bread soda and red food colouring …
 
The end of the story follows:
Jammie is very happy that the potion worked so well, and wants to thank you all for helping her. She has a few treats for everybody …
Find the treats
You can hide a box with treats. You can also first have something to eat and hide the goodie bags somewhere instead. I love to make pancakes for birthday parties. You can do it beforehand and most kids love it …

Shopping list (for ten kids): 

1. Some snacks for activity number 3 (crisps/ pop corn and drinks) : €8,-

2. A pumpkin for activity number 4: €3,-.

3.Some prices for the Bingo (activity number 5): €15

4..Ingredients for the potion: Vinegar, Bread soda:, food colouring, (blue and yellow to get green or just red), nutella, Golden syrup: total: €9,-

6. Pancake ingredients: eggs, flour and milk: €5,-

7.Cake/ cake ingredients: €10,-

Total: €50!

Obviously you can add goodie bags and more sweets/ popcorn as well …

Preparations:

  1. Print out the the invitations here.
  2. Fill two bags with the following items: trousers, button-up shirt, tie, shoes, hat, jacket.
  3. Collect items for the memory game. To save money, you can also use pictures. It might be handy to use the pictures for the Bingo in activity numero 5.
  4. Make a bag/ box with snacks and hide them. I used a big towel and pinned two black eyes to it and a big mouth and hung it up in the hallway off the stairs …
  5. Cover a pumpkin with tin foil and hide it.
  6. Print the bingo card and the form with all the pieces on it. Cut out all the pieces and put them in a box for the game. Get some pencils/ markers for the game.
  7. Discard the labels of the magic potion ‘ingredients’, replace them with homemade labels with the following names:

Golden syrup = snake’s slime, Nutella=’owl’s poo’, vinegar=’snails tears’, bread soda= ‘magic dust’, Red food colouring=’mouses blood’.

Or whatever you can come up with …

8. If you decide to go for pancakes, make them beforehand. You will only need to heat them up when the kids are going to have their food.

Easter party/ Easter egg hunt in the forest

Appropriate age group: 4-7

These are some ideas for an Easter egg hunt or a birthday party that you may have around Easter time. It’s a trail around the forest with a few activities on the way, at the end you could organise the actual easter egg hunt.

The trail revolves around a little story about the Easter bunny. It’s very short, which will make it also very suitable for younger children.

At the start of the trail, you can read out the following:

During the winter months, the Easter bunny lives in this forest. He likes to jump around and he keeps and colours the Easter eggs here. We are going on a little adventure to find out more about the Easter bunny …
Follow the trail that is set out with ribbons, up to the first stop.
At the first stop, read out the following
 The Easter bunny wants to welcome you all to the forest with a magic egg. However, the Easter bunny cannot find it. Can you go and have a look for it. If you find it you’ll have to crack it to find it’s magic contents …
I had hidden a huge pinata in the shape of an egg. It was hanging off a tree, deep into the forest (about 100 yards from the path), so that it wasn’t that easily visible. Obviously, the kids had to hit it with the sticks that they found in the forest. Inside were bags of crisps/ popcorn.
The pinata is very easy to make with flour, water, a balloon and newspaper (more about this below).
Egg-shaped pinata

Egg-shaped pinata

We continue the trail to the next stop by following the ribbons. The story continues: 
The Easter bunny was very sorry that he could not meet you today. He had to go to an egg painting meeting with his friends. Instead, he has left a picture of himself in the forest. Can you find all the pieces and fix the jigsaw?
I got a big poster of the Easter bunny for this and glued it to cardboard, I cut it into different jigsaw pieces and hid the pieces around the area of the second stop. Once the kids had found all the jigsaw pieces they had to put them together.
Easter bunny jigsaw

Easter bunny jigsaw

Up to the next stop. We read the following:
The Easter bunny always hides all the eggs in the forest to make sure that nobody can find them before Easter. He would like to give you some as a little treat. Can you help the Easter bunny to find the eggs? 
Here we had hidden a shoebox with chocolate eggs. Again, we hid it not to close to the pathway. 

Shopping list (for 10 kids)

1. Flour €1.50, Crisps/ popcorn: €4,-, Drinks (water/ fruit shoot): €8,-

2. Punch balloons (these are the big balloons with an elastic band attached that you can punch: €3,-

3. A poster of an Easter bunny, most 2 euro shops have these around Easter: €2,-

4. Chocolate Easter eggs: €6,-

Total cost: €25,-

Preparations:

1. Print out the story here and cut it up at the lines to put it into envelopes. Number the envelopes 1-3.

2. Make the pinata, instructions can be found here. I used the big punch balloons. Also make sure that you make it a long time before hand as it need to dry for a few days before you can paint it.

3. Once the pinata is finished, fill it with the crisps/ popcorn and attach a wire to it to hang it up. The best way to do this is by sticking sellotape on the outside and inside where you want to make a hole, this will stop it from tearing.

4. Stick the bunny poster onto cardboard and cut it into jigsaw pieces with scissors or a stanley knife. If you can’t find a piece of cardboard big enough, you can also cut the poster into the jigsaw pieces and stick these to the cardboard, cutting it in the same shape.

5. Make a box for the chocolate eggs. I used a shoe box covered in tin foil.

6. Before setting out the trail, pack the following:

  • Task 1: Pinata, scissors, extra wire
  • Task 2: jigsaw pieces
  • Task 3: shoe box with chocolate eggs
  • Also: the envelopes, loads of ribbons, cello tape, scissors …

6.Setting out the trail:

  • Set out the trail an hour before the party starts, you want to make sure that the ribbons are still there for the party;
  • Place the ribbons in a visible spot high up, so that other people can’t get near them;
  • Use a lot of ribbons, especially where you turn left or right;
  • For the tasks, hang the envelopes in a high place off a tree;
  • For the items that need to be hidden, make sure you cannot see them from the path …

7. And finally a bit of advise:

  • Try to get a few parents to help you setting out the trail. Also during the party make sure that you have an adult at the tail end of the group who can make sure that no children stay behind.
  • The kids will get very excited to try to find the ribbons. Point out a few rules at the start of the trail. Every child should get a turn in leading the group. And during the tasks nobody should go ahead to look for the ribbons. The promise of a medal, or another price for whoever respects the rules might be a good incentive.
  • Always make sure that no rubbish is left behind. It’s everybody’s responsibility to clean up after them.
 

Hansel and Gretel Birthday party in the forest

Appropriate age: 7-9

I have great memories of birthday parties in the forest when I was young. My parents always organised a trail with loads of games on the way. So for my own kids I think the best parties are the ones that we are having in the forest.

For my eldest daughter I set out a quest based on the fairy tale of Hansel and Gretel. Before we started the walk I read out the start of the fairy tale: about the stepmother who wanted the father of the children (the woodcutter) to bring his children into the forest and leave them there.

We start the walk, following the ribbons on the trees that we have attached earlier before the party started (don’t forget to untie them and bring them with you). I am holding a big stick with balloons attached to it so that everybody can see me.

All overexcited to be the first to find the ribbons

All overexcited to be the first to find the ribbons

At the first stop, marked by a little envelope attached to a tree, we continue the story. About how Hansel and Gretel overhear the stepmother and dad talking and how Hansel went out to find pebbles or leave a trail to find their way home the next day. The task at this point is to make knapsacks to hold the pebbles. All the kids had to find a suitable stick and I bought tea towels in the euro shop to tie to them.

We continue our walk, following the ribbons again. At the next stop we continue the story. About how the woodcutter brought the children into the forest and left them there.

Read out the following bit: At night you hear a lot of noises in the forest but you cannot see anything. Everyone is going to be blindfolded and will get an animal noise that they have to make. There are two of each. The idea is to find the other animal of the same kind. For example, if you are a dog, you have to find another dog. Make sure that everybody makes the noise at the same time.

The animal game

The animal game

We continue to the next task. We are at the stage now in the story where Hansel and Gretel are trying to find their way back home. 

The task is now to find a trail of pebbles that will lead to a box with treats (popcorn and drinks).

The trail continues. At the next stop we continue the story: The children return home safely and the stepmother is furious. She demands that the woodcutter brings them back into the forest again. This time she locks all the doors of the house so the children cannot go out to find pebbles. The next day the woodcutter brings the children out into the forest again and instead of using pebbles, Hansel is using bread to leave a trail. However, by the time the woodcutter leaves them all the bread is gone. The birds have eaten it. Hansel and Gretel wait for the night to pass and start to find their way back by daylight. After a long walk they see a little house. When they get closer they see that the house is made out of sweets. (this is quite a long story, the best way to do this is to ask the kids to tell the story, that will keep their attention).

The task is to divide the group into two teams of five, or whatever the number is suitable , and to make a little house like the witch’s with sticks, moss and whatever else they can find in the forest.

We continue the trail to the next stop. The story continues: Hansel and Gretel meet the witch, who is nice to them at first but then gets very nasty and locks Hansel up and uses Gretel as her little helper. The witch wants to fatten up Hansel to cook him and have him for dinner. So she feeds him a lot of food. She feels Hansel’s finger every time  (she has very bad eyesight) to feel if he got any fatter yet. But Hansel sticks out a little stick instead. The witch is getting impatient and decided to heat up the oven to put Hansel into it. When she is checking the oven, Gretel gives her a push and the witch is burnt alive in the oven. Gretel frees Hansel . Before they go they find a treasure with gold in the house. 

The task is to find the treasure in the forest. I hid the box beforehand when setting out the trail. It was a shoebox, covered in tin foil and I put in some golden coins and bubbles.

Bubbles are great, all kids love them

Bubbles are great, all kids love them

We continue the trail back to the car park where there are picnic tables or bring a few blankets so that the kids can sit on the grass.

The story comes to an end: Hansel and Gretel are finding their way back home. When they arrive home the woodcutter is so happy to see his children. He gets them a big cake to celebrate. The stepmother is gone and with the gold that they have brought with them, they are no longer poor.

We are also having cake to celebrate, after a bit of food. I usually get some of the parents helping out to drive to the nearest pizza place or get pizza delivered. To keep it cheap and cheerful, sandwiches are another option. You can prepare them beforehand …

At the end, all the kids receive a goodie bag. Which was a mini-knapsack, made with a paper napkin, a ribbon and a bamboo stick …

Mini knapsacks for goodie bags ...

Mini knapsacks for goodie bags …

Shopping list (for 10 kids)

1. Tea towels from the 2 euro shop:€2 per two: total: €10

2. Blindfolds, the cheapest way to get these is to get ties in the secondhand shop: €5,- for 10

3. Popcorn and drinks (fruit shoot & water): €8,-

4.Bubbles from the two euro shop: €5,- for 10. Golden coins: €4,- from the two euro shop

5. Cake/ cake ingredients: €10

6. Pizzas: €20,- or sandwiches if you want to keep the cost down

7. Drinks to go with the pizza: €6,- (Fruitshoot and water)

8. Paper napkins for the goodie bags: €2,- in the 2 euro shop. Sweets for the goodie bags: €5.

9. Bamboo sticks, one big one that you can cut up: €3,-

10 Envelopes (6) and ribbons €5

Total: €63 without the pizza, €83, with the pizza

Preparations:

1. Print out the story HanselandGretelbirthdayparty, and cut it up at the lines to put it into envelopes. Number the envelopes 1-6.

2. Fill a box with treats (for example popcorn and fruit shoots/ water) for the 3rd stop.

3. Make a treasure chest with golden coins and bubbles, or anything else you can think of. I used a shoebox covered in tin foil.

4. make the goodie bags: fill the napkins with the sweets (soft sweets work best, nothing too bulky) and tie with the ribbon, tie the ribbon around the bamboo stick.

5. Before setting out the trail, pack the following:

  • Task 1: tea towels and wire;
  • Task 2: Ties;
  • Task 3: Box with treats and pebbles
  • Task 4: nothing, maybe some wire and scissors
  • Task 5: treasure chest
  • Also: the envelopes, loads of ribbons, cello tape, scissors …

6.Setting out the trail:

  • Set out the trail an hour before the party starts, you want to make sure that the ribbons are still there for the party;
  • Place the ribbons in a visible spot high up, so that other other people can’t get near them;
  • Use a lot of ribbons, especially where you turn left or right;
  • For the tasks, hang the envelopes in a high place off a tree;
  • For the items that need to be hidden, make sure you cannot see them from the path …

7. And finally a bit of advise:

  • Try to get a few parents to help you setting out the trail. Also during the party make sure that you have an adult at the tail end of the group who can make sure that no children stay behind.
  • The kids will get very excited to try to find the ribbons. Point out a few rules at the start of the trail. Every child should get a turn in leading the group. And during the tasks nobody should go ahead to look for the ribbons. The promise of a medal, or another price for whoever respects the rules, might be a good incentive.
  • Always make sure that no rubbish is left behind. It’s everybody’s responsibility to clean up after them.
  • Don’t leave the items, like the ties and tea towels in the forest before the party. Bring them with you when the party starts in a bag/ rucksack.

Hawaiian Party

Appropriate age: 9-12

My eldest daughter Abby has her birthday in August. Although we are not guaranteed good weather in Ireland in the summer months, I’d still like to chance it. Last year she wanted a Hawaiian party. And we were so lucky to have the perfect day for it with 24 degrees and sunshine! We stocked up on flower chains for the girls and sunglasses for the boys from the euro shop, hung up balloons and bunting in the garden, blew up and filled the paddling pool and made a playlist with some nice summery songs (Waka Waka by Shakira, the tide is high by Blondie, Mambo no 5 by Lou Bega, Macarena, Holiday, etc). We also looked up the names of all the guests in Hawaiian at the following site: http://www.alohafriends.com/name.html. We cut out little fish from tinfoil and wrote the name on it and attached it with a ribbon to a cocktail glass. Everybody was asked to come in swimming suit and to bring a bath towel. We made fruit juice cocktails by mixing different fruit juices with some sparkling water.The palm tree straws topped it all off …

Image

When the guests arrived the got a flower chain/ singlasses and a cocktail. After everybody had arrived and enjoyed a drink we started our first activity: limbo dancing. Accompanied by a lot of loud music, two people held a piece of rope and all the kids tried to go under it, without touching it, while bending backwards. Especially the bending backward seemed quite tricky for most of the kids but they had a great laugh.

After this we had a water balloon fight. Something that all kids love. It was a lot of work to get them all filled and the game was over very soon, but definitely worth the effort.

For the next game we got our bath towels out. We played ‘musical bath towels’, the same game as musical chairs, but using bath towels instead of chairs. All the bath towels, bar one, were placed side by side on the grass, the kids had to dance around them and when the music stopped, whoever did not have a towel was out of the game …

We were all very hungry after these games and all tucked into a dinner of burgers and hot dogs. The birthday cake was home made, I used the recipe by Lorraine Pascale of the ‘I can’t believe you made that cake’, and topped it of with chocolate flowers, which I bought in Holland. The recipe for this cake can be found here.

Birthday cake for Hawaiian party

Birthday cake for Hawaiian party

We had made some colourful goodie bags with crepe paper and bendy straws and we had put the into a bucket.

Goodie bags Hawaiian party

Goodie bags Hawaiian party

We attached a long rope to the handle of the bucket. We threw the rope over a high branch of a tree. We lifted the bucket up high and attached a bucket full of of water at the other end of the rope, this part was touching the ground. The task was to empty the bucket of water with plastic cups, which the kids had to empty in the paddling pool. One per child. The less water was in the bucket the more it rose up and brought the other bucket with the goodie bags down. I got the idea of the ‘I’m a celebrity … get me out of here’ program …

We finished the day with a disco in the paddling pool. The kids had a ball!

Shopping list (for 10 children)

1.Flower chains, I got 4 for €3,-, I needed 8 for the girls: €6,- and 2 pairs of sunglasses for the boys: €4,-.

2.Plastic cocktail glasses from the 2 euro shop: 4 for €2,-. Total: €6,-

3. Straws from the 2 euro shop with palm trees: €2,-

4.Water balloons: 2 euro shop: 2 packets: €4,-

5. Burgers, burger buns, hot dogs, some sweets (for the party and the goodie bags) and drinks (juice, water, fruitshoot): €18,-

6. A cake or ingredients for a cake: €10,-

7. Crepe paper and ribbons from the 2 euro shop: €4,-

8. Bendy straws, I found them in Dunnes Stores: about €5,- in total.

Total costs: €59,-

Preparations:

  1. Have the music and playlist ready;
  2. get out a rope or a stick for the limbo dancing.
  3. Fill up the water balloons, take quite a bit of time out for this, it’s very time consuming;
  4. Make the goodie bags and put them into the bucket. Attach the rope to the bucket and another bucket at the other end. Allow for quite a bit of rope in between. Don’t hang the bucket from the tree until after the food has been served. Otherwise the surprise will be gone. When the kids are having food, someone can hang it in the tree and fill the other bucket with water.
  • The kids can help you with:
  1. Fill the paddling pool.
  2. Make the punch/ cocktails. I mixed tropical fruit juice with sparkling water.
  3. Make the name tags for the cocktail glasses: I cut out fold tin foil and stick it together to make it stronger. Cut out a fish shape. Write the Hawaiian name of the child on the fish. Punch a hole into the fish. Stick a ribbon through it and attach it to the glass.