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Frozen Birthday Party

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Like a lot of girls right now, my daughter wanted a Frozen birthday party.  My husband, who is a little Frozen crazy too, wanted to give her a big Frozen party for our family and close friends.  I was hesitant.  With my husband’s big family, parties are not exactly fun to plan and carry out.  But since Kayla was so excited, I decided to go ahead and do it.  The party was a success, but did require a lot of work to plan out.

As life sometimes happens, the morning of the party, Kayla woke up sick with an upset stomach.  Although the party went well, we didn’t get to put up all the decorations and do everything we planned, but we did get mostly everything done.  Kayla was a trooper while we set up for the party and during 3/4’s of the party.  Toward the end, her upset stomach started to catch up to her.

Here are some highlights from the party.

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We had cardboard stand ups so the kids could take pictures with them, and we used the Olaf one to play Pin the Nose on Olaf.  The kids loved them.

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We played Sven’s Buckets, and used fake snowballs to throw into the buckets.  This was my daughter’s favorite game/activity at the party.

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Then we played Pin the Nose on Olaf.

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Next up was building a snowman with Olaf stickers.  I had a set of Olaf stickers for all the kids where they have to put him together.  I also had other Frozen stickers, so they could create their own Frozen ornaments.

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I decorated a cake table for Kayla’s Frozen cake and Olaf cupcakes.  It came out really pretty.

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Kayla got a lot of present, and only about a third of them were Frozen related.  Which was fine with us because she’s getting plenty of Frozen stuff on her actual birthday and for Christmas.

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Party planning

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Once Again, We’re Counting Down to Disney

It’s been awhile since I’ve put up a new post.  I’ve had plenty of things I’ve wanted to share, but little time to sit down and type up a post, along with pictures.  I promise to do better.  With the summer coming to an end soon, it should be easier to find some time to get this blog rolling again.  

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Once again, my daughter is counting down to our trip to Disney World.  I was able to get her to hold out a little longer this year before putting up our chart, but eventually I had to give in and let the countdown begin.  We are currently under 90 days till our trip (80 to be exact), and I am in full on planning mode.  I am trying to prepare a loose itinerary, plan out what rides I want to try to get fastpass+ for, make any changes to our Advanced Dining Reservations, and make any arrangements that have yet to be made.  Sometimes it feels like a daunting task.  But other times…it just fuels the excitement.

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I’ve been going to Disney World for as long as I can remember.  I have wonderful memories of going there as a kid with my family.  Now as a parent, I am thoroughly enjoying passing down my love for Disney World to my daughter.  (I was even able to get my husband to appreciate Disney World when we went last year.)  I loved seeing her eyes light up when she saw her favorite characters in person, and when she got to go on the various rides for the first time.  The memories are priceless.

Over the course of the next few months, I will be doing multiple Disney themed posts.  If you are not a Disney fan, please bear with me.  If you are a Disney fan, please feel free to post comments sharing your own Disney experiences, memories, and tips.  Remember, everything I post here are just my opinions, or from research I’ve done online, through books, and from my own personal experiences.  I do not claim to be an expert.  I am just another Disney fan that enjoys sharing my love for Disney with others. Come along on this magical journey with me.

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* Note: If you are interested in how I made the Disney Countdown Chart, please see my previous post from July 2013.

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Princess Jasmine Cake

Kayla with her Jasmine cake.

Kayla with her Jasmine cake.

My daughter’s favorite Disney princess is Jasmine. She absolutely adores Jasmine, and she thinks Jasmine is the prettiest princess. Kayla has seen all of the princess movies now and read various books, and Jasmine remains her favorite. Since we’ll be celebrating Kayla’s 3rd birthday at Disney World, I inquired about Jasmine cakes. Apparently, Princess Jasmine cakes are not one of their standard cakes. Not even at Cinderella’s Royal Table where they make various princess cakes.

Instead of trying to convince a pastry chef at Disney World to make a special cake for my daughter, that would probably cost a small fortune, I decided to make my own mini Princess Jasmine cake. At first, I had grand ideas of how I would decorate it. In the end, it was a simply decorated cake because I was short on time and my daughter was getting restless waiting for me to get done in the kitchen.

Kayla helped me make the batter for the chocolate cake and bake it in the oven, but then I sent her out of the kitchen once the cake had cooled. I quickly decorated the cake using one of her Jasmine figurines, buttercream frosting that I tinted sky blue, and blue edible sparkles/glitter.

Examining the batter as we were making it.

Examining the batter as we were making it.

Tasting the batter.

Tasting the batter.

Poking the batter in the mold pan.

Poking the batter in the mold pan.

We slightly overfilled them, but Kayla was helping me pour.  They still came out fine.

We slightly overfilled them, but Kayla was helping me pour. They still came out fine.

Kayla helping me bake.

Kayla helping me bake.

Kayla staring me down.

Kayla staring me down.

The back of the cake as I was putting on the frosting.

The back of the cake as I was putting on the frosting.

Starting to ice the cake with the sky blue frosting.

Starting to ice the cake with the sky blue frosting.

When I showed the finished cake to Kayla, she was surprised and happy. She thought it was pretty, even without all the details I didn’t get to do. All she cared about was that it was her favorite princess, and that the cake sparkled. Kayla had fun licking the sparkles off the cake. She couldn’t wait to tell grandma that mommy made her a Jasmine cake (for her birthday…a month early). She spent a few days looking at it and eating it slowly. She wanted to show her friends her special cake. I was happy that she was happy. That’s really all that mattered to me.

Princess Jasmine Cake

Princess Jasmine Cake

Finished cake.  Not as detailed as I was planning, but still came out cute.

Finished cake. Not as detailed as I was planning, but still came out cute.

Kayla seeing her cake for the first time.

Kayla seeing her cake for the first time.

In awe of her cake.

In awe of her cake.

Cheesy smile.

Cheesy smile.

Tasting the blue frosting with blue sparkles.  She loved it.

Tasting the blue frosting with blue sparkles. She loved it.

My pretty girl and her Jasmine cake.

My pretty girl and her Jasmine cake.

Slowly eating her cake and trying to get Jasmine out.

Slowly eating her cake and trying to get Jasmine out.

Trying to get her Jasmine figurine out of the cake.

Trying to get her Jasmine figurine out of the cake.

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And the countdown begins

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Yes, we’re taking our daughter to Disney World for the first time this November. It will be right before her 3rd birthday. We will literally be coming back from vacation the day before her birthday. I’m looking forward to it, but I think my hubby isn’t prepared. When I was little, my family went to Disney World at least once a year, if not twice, up until I was about 8 years old. (We have family in Florida.) After that, we went every few years. I went twice on my own in my 20’s and I still loved it. There is something magical about going to Disney World. I think it’s even more special when you’re a little girl. All the princesses, castles, fairy tales, etc. It makes it seem like anything is possible. Sure, as adults we know it’s all a bit silly, but as a kid…it’s amazing. I want Kayla to be able to have the wonderful experiences that I did going to Disney World as a kid. No, we’re not going to be able to afford to get down there every year, but I am hoping to be able to go down there every 3-4 years until she doesn’t want to go anymore. We’re possibly considering trying for another baby next year, so we wanted to do our first Disney trip now before we have to put it off for a few more years. I really have no desire to be pregnant at Disney World, or there with an infant. I also know that once my sister’s family goes there this summer, and my nephew comes back with all his stories, Kayla will want to go too. We’re trying to plan smart and go at a time when it will be less crowded and the weather will be cooler. My sister, however, is going around 4th of July. I wish her all the luck in the world because that is a ROUGH time to go. I don’t envy her. I am perfectly content going in November. It will be an incredible experience being able to take my own daughter there as a special birthday gift. Let the countdown begin!

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Kayla turned 2! – How did two years go by already?

Kayla with her birthday crown on.

Kayla turned two last week, and I am still trying to wrap my head around the fact that my baby is now a 2-year-old.  It feels like she was just born.  When I was younger, I never understood when people would say that time goes by faster the older you get, and time flies by once you have kids.  It seemed so silly to me.  Why would time suddenly start going by faster?  Time seemed to move so slow when I was little.  But now I finally understand.  The last two years have gone by so fast it feels like I just blinked my eyes and they are gone.  I am so glad I am someone who takes a lot of pictures and tries to remember to take videos, because those things are so precious to me now.  I love looking at all of Kayla’s pictures, and seeing how she has changed.  It’s amazing.

I wanted to do a simple party for Kayla’s birthday, with just family and friends who have young kids.  That didn’t happen.  Nothing is simple with my husband’s family.  He is one of 7 kids, and there are 12 grandkids…with another one on the way soon….so there will be 13 grandkids.  When his parents, siblings, grandkids, and significant others all get together, there are over 30 people.  And that’s not including any aunts and uncles, or family friends.  It’s a little crazy and overwhelming.  My family is much smaller, but once you add in my family and any of our friends, we can have over 50 people for a gathering.  To me, that is just too much.  It feels more like a circus than a party.

Kayla ended up having a party at Chuck E Cheese’s.  Luckily, not everyone attended due to other obligations, and we opted not to invite most of our friends.  So total, we had about 32 people.  This party set us back $300, and that isn’t including her gifts.  (I must fight harder next year to do something even smaller.)  And this was actually a little cheaper than her 1st birthday party.  My goal is to keep saving more money on her parties each year until I view it as a reasonable expense.  Don’t get me wrong, I believe birthdays are important and should be celebrated, but I think the party itself should cost under $200.  Maybe I am being unrealistic with the amount of people, but I also would love to cut down on the size of the party.  My husband keeps informing me that this is impossible without hurting people’s feelings.  We shall see…

Anyway, Kayla had an awesome time at her party, and she enjoyed her actual birthday.  Her actual birthday is extra special because she was born on my older nephew’s birthday, November 15th.  He turned 18 this year.  He likes to talk about how for his 16th birthday I gave him a baby cousin.  🙂

Happy 2nd Birthday to my little Love Bug!!!

Kayla hugging Chuck E Cheese on one of the little rides.

Playing games together.

Hanging out with Chuck E Cheese.

So many presents…

Celebrating her actual birthday at home.

Mmmm…cake

Her new tent…which is much bigger than her old tent.

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