Guys, how is my little sprog already three years old?! Her birthday was just over a month after Maia was born and so I didn’t have as much time (or energy TBH) to plan her party and so I was feeling a little despondent about it all until my sister suggested I do a teddy bear’s picnic party. It’s a really sweet theme, but not overly complicated to decorate which suited me down to the tee.
Venue: I considered having it at home like we usually do but when my dad reminded me of Modderfontein Nature Reserve we settled on having it there and it was just lovely. The reserve itself is so beautiful with a huge dam (although you aren’t allowed to swim in it), jungle gyms and lots of picnic tables. Dan, my sister and I arrived early to snag a great spot really close to the jungle gym so that the kids could go wild. There is a small fee per person to enter Modderfontein but it’s so worth it as you feel really safe and secure and the reserve is well maintained. There are ablusions close by and the grounds staff that we encountered are friendly and helpful.
Decor: This was probably one of the most simple and easy party’s to decorate. I really didn’t go overboard at all, there wasn’t any need with our lovely venue! It really helps to have friends who are also in the phase of throwing their kids parties because you can borrow things as you need and lend out as others need. I borrowed a bunch of goodies from Mari-Louise from Just a Mamma and it really helped so much. We used some picnic blankets and quilts to lay down on the grass to make sitting a little bit more comfy for those who weren’t sitting at the table. For the kiddie’s table, I used two wooden palettes that we had lying around at home. I spotted them for R15 each at a random little hardware store, eventually they’re going to become a new dog bed but for now they worked brilliantly as a party table for the little ones. I used two teepees from My Tiny Teepee for kids to sit inside if they wanted to and brought a whole lot of teddy bears from home to place all over the show, it is their picnic after all! And that was it for the decor – easy as pie!
Kids food/party packs: This is always such a hot topic amongst parents isn’t it? I went with the 60/40 rule; 60% healthier food and 40% sweets and instead of having a table of food for the kids, I made up a little picnic parcel for each of them which also doubled up as a party pack, I think it prevented a lot of food being wasted, my worst! Inside each of the little packs were:
- a Ceres Water Swirl juice
- some unsalted homemade popcorn that we put into a little brown paper bag
- three of four gummy sweets in a little brown paper bag
- a marshmallow Easter egg
- a mini hamburger (or falafal) from Woolworths
- a little tub of homemade playdoh
I used some red heart stickers to seal the brown paper bags and then I used some ribbon to tie a bow on the parcels handles. I also used Canva to design name tags so that each childs name was on their party pack.
Adults food: Like the rest of the party, I kept this super simple and just did harvest boards of different breads, cheeses, bread sticks, olives, grapes, cold meats and spreads. For refreshments I had two decanters; one with water and one with some iced tea. Instead of paper cups and plates, I used some plastic white square side plates and some little glass jars with plastic reusable straws from Mari-Louise.
The cake: Look, it wasn’t as impressive as those amazing creations that you see on Pinterest but I’m quite proud of how my cake came out. When we asked Aria what she wanted for her birthday she kept telling us that she wanted a chocolate cake, with chocolate icing and candles and so that’s exactly what she got. I’m not the best baker and so I used box mix and it worked so well, in fact so many people complimented me on my cake saying how delicious it was.
All in all it was such a fun day; the kids played their hearts out (pretty sure they all fell asleep in the car on the way home), the adults all seemed pretty relaxed and chatted away and the birthday girl had the best time playing with her friends and stuffing her face with cake. And let’s be honest, that’s what it’s all about, right?