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A few years, I entered a new world – the world of children’s birthday parties.
It started innocently enough when we found ourselves attending a few of our friend’s kid’s birthday parties. Then when I had the little one, I of course had to throw a big party and make these giant paper pansies and magnolias. Those lovely flowers are still hanging in my daughter’s room. This year, I wanted to create a party around something she really likes since she now has her own little personality and very vocally voices her preferences. The little lady loves pandas and we even went to the Singapore River Safari so that she could see them in person. While we learned that she is actually pretty scared of pandas or anything in a panda costume that is bigger than her, she still loves them in a small, stuffed huggable form (or on stickers or books). Basically, she only loves things that she can hug or crush (and my husband and I of course though we are bigger than her!)
I had all kinds of ideas swirling in my head about how to make a panda themed birthday party. Should I make everyone masks? Should I have a wall of pandas?
In the end, I decided to keep it chic and simple and center it around black, white, with a touch of green from real bamboo leaves.
The bamboo leaves were actually really easy though I contemplated buying a few small potted bamboo plants. I realized we had bamboos in our development and asked the gardener for a few leaves 2 days before the party (warning, if you use cut leaves, they really only keep 2 days). I taped these under black and white pearl balloons at a few scattered points in the common room. I even made a balloon garland and can make a brief tutorial about this soon. I basically had no time to eat or take pictures during the party so here is a picture of the food after it was half gone. I liked the simplicity of orchids in old jelly jars and just food, glorious food! I really need to get a photographer next time or plan a simpler menu!
I also used the cutest panda cookie cutters to make panda shaped watermelon (one of her favorite fruits). It turned out that she loved the panda toothpicks on pineapple slices even more though I had to be careful other kids didn’t eat or poke themselves with the toothpicks. I even bought panda rice molds but opted not to use them – they will be saved for her lunch boxes and the next party!
I’m mostly proud of myself that yes, one can throw a kid’s birthday party and it can be adorable, but doesn’t have to have neon and streamers everywhere!