Winter Wonderland Party

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It’s hard to fathom the idea of having a ten year old.  Partly because in my head I’m 29 and that would have made me a pregnant teenager, and partly because this past ten years flew by and I can only imagine it flying even faster from this point.

Our sweet Ally James turned 10 this month.  She initially asked for another My Little Pony party but ultimately decided she’d like to have an ice skating party to commemorate the big ten.  She and I love to dream up her special day and she’s usually open to my ideas but this year she had one stipulation, “NO Frozen”.  Apparently at 10, we are no longer fans of princesses…

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We settled on a Winter Wonderland party with ice skating, hot cocoa and a color palate of blush pink, mint green, cream and mixed metals.

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Over the years I’ve gotten a tiny bit out of control with invitations.  I’ve sent printed balloons, movie reels, messages in bottles, shark shaped wood, bandanna’s tucked into burlap bags… I can get a little carried away.  I joke with my husband that someday when Ally has a baby, I’ll have invitations delivered via stork.  But my party mantra has always been THE INVITATION SETS THE STAGE FOR THE PARTY.   It’s true. It does!

Sure, I send over the top invites.  It’s all in perspective.  There are times I send a text inviting people over or times I use a digital invite.  It just depends on the type of event.  But for my daughter’s 10th birthday, I wanted something special that screamed Winter Wonderland so we sent her invites inside snow globes.

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I found inexpensive photo snow globes and enlisted the skills of the fabulous Harper Gray Designs to create an invitation that would fit inside the snow globe.  She never fails to knock my socks off.  It was exactly what I wanted and fit perfectly inside the snow globe.  The bottom part of the globe was {ugly} black, so I just spray painted each base with gold spray paint!  Easy fix. I found kraft boxes from Nashville Wraps and laid the snow globes in a bed of faux snow and sent them off!

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As I packed up Christmas, I set certain pieces aside for Ally’s party.  We used mercury glass and bottle brush trees as part of the table centerpiece and copper lanterns filled with Illume‘s mercury glass candles to give the room a cozy ambiance.

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My vintage pink dishes, vases, stands and glassware were thrilled to come out of their rubbermaids and make an appearance for Ally’s party.  I have collected pink glass for years and I think this is the first time I’ve been able to use all of it together for a party!  It’s the sweetest.  I’m having a hard time packing it back up.

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Since her party was fairly short, we settled on a hot cocoa bar and desserts.  No need to bring in a whole food table when the kids are only interested in ice skating and the sugar anyway!

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Instead of goodie bags, Ally treated each guest to a hat, gloves and scarf to keep warm while ice skating.  We stocked up during Old Navy, Gap Kids and Forever 21’s after Christmas sales!  The goodies hung from two vintage ladders, twine and clothespins.

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To sweeten up the room and add a little life, I made a few flower arrangements with ordinary grocery store flowers.  January always proves to be a difficult time of year for flowers in Seattle, so the options weren’t ideal.  I grabbed a handful and supplemented with greens from my yard.  I had bought a can of snow spray and gave each tree branch a coat of white before arranging.  I loved how they turned out.

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The dessert table is the centerpiece of any party.  Ally’s table was relatively minimal since we had such a small group and also because I was going for more of a dainty look. I made Ally a sugar crystal coated cake, stacked mini cakes, sugar cookies, and cake balls shaped as snowballs.

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It’s important to recognize your strengths and know your weaknesses. Because I don’t have the time or patience to conquer successful macarons, I hired them out. Lady Yum makes the most delicious macs I’ve ever had and did a fantastic job color coordinating to Ally’s party! They also made a delicious breakfast the next morning…

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The desserts were placed atop a vintage dresser alongside a copper lantern and one of my grocery-store-chic flower arrangements.  I woke up the morning of her party without my head wrapped around what the table backdrop would be so I quickly glue gunned popsicle sticks in a snowflake shape, spray painted it pink and attached a fluffy white pom pom to the center.  It was the easiest and most inexpensive backdrop I’ve ever made and so cute!

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The girls bundled up and laced their skates for some fun on the ice.

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After an hour and a half of skating, the girls warmed up with hot cocoa, cookies and cake!

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I like having a photo op at parties to capture a photo of each guest.  Over Christmas break, my kids and I made popsicle stick snowflakes with a glue gun, white spray paint and pom poms.  We glued them to a gray tablecloth making a darling photo backdrop!

Ally made sure to pose with each friend so we could send a print to each girl to replace the invitation in the snow globe.

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I can’t believe we have a double digit daughter but I’m  so grateful to be her mom.  As sad as it is that time goes by so quickly, I focus on how each age and stage has brought new personality, growth and joy to our lives.  Ally you are smart, kind, beautiful, motivated and truly have a heart of gold.  Happy Birthday sweet girl!

Photography by Solie Designs

12 thoughts on “Winter Wonderland Party

  1. Hey Jenny! Love your parties as always ! I’m always planning parties for my family and friends and I want to know what is your average about that you spend on parties?! I know food and decor items can get expensive real quick .. Everything you posted, did you already have and you just keep for for other parties ?

    1. Hi there! Each party is so different, it’s hard to give an average. It depends on how many guests, what type of food/dessert/drinks you’re serving, if you’re renting a venue or hosting at home, etc. Most of my decor I used I pulled from my own inventory or made it myself. The best way to keep the cost down is to start with a budget and stick to it!!

  2. Hi Jenny,

    Where did you get the beautiful pink table cloth and napkins? I love the color. Splendid job on the party. Just love how you pulled it all together.

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