My middle daughter turned eight this month (How? How is this possible? She was 2.5 when we moved to California. Where did the time go?) In the past we’ve been able to convince her to go skiing for the weekend to celebrate her birthday, but this year she wanted a full-on party. December is a tough time for birthdays, but we made the best of it and had an 8th “brrrrrthday” party, complete with a winter wonderland theme.
I love to get the kids involved in the decorations. My oldest girl suggested getting these:
Crayola Washable Window Markers with Crystal Effects and they turned out to be super cool (no pun intended). While they take a while to dry and crystalize, it’s amazing to watch the designs come to life on sliding glass doors and windows. My girls drew icicles:
and I attempted some snowflake designs of my own:
For the birthday cake we made a dense two-layer chocolate cake from Baking Kids Love (from Sur La Table), along with this buttercream frosting except we substituted powdered sugar for regular refined sugar. It’s not an easy frosting recipe but it’s worth it to avoid the corn syrup in tub frostings. Tip: when you make the milk-flour roux, strain it through a sieve to eliminate any lumps, and then let it cool completely to room temperature so that the frosting does not separate when you combine the milk-flour roux with the whipped butter and sugar and vanilla. It makes a light, fluffy frosting that’s not sickeningly sweet. Tip #2: let your child decorate the cake herself. That takes away any pressure to make it perfect. My 8-year-old painted her snowflake on the cake this year:
and made this winter scene last year:
and this lighthouse the year before (what, you couldn’t tell that’s a red-and-white striped lighthouse??):
For party favors this year, I made Tanya’s Snickerdoodle cookies in the shape of snowmen, and packaged them in Ziploc winter-themed bags:
I printed winter-themed coloring pages for party crafts, and let the kids decorate some of the other sliding glass doors with the crystal markers.
My daughter loved her party and having all the guests over to play. Her favorite gift turned out to be one that fit right in with the theme:
Cherokee Girls’ Earmuffs from Target (no affiliation).
Birthday cakes: buy or make your own? Frosting: tub or do it yourself?