Last year Jenn and I hosted a Polar Express birthday party for Hudson and Lila because their birthdays are so close together. This year Lila’s going to go with a more girly theme but Hudson was dead set on having a “hot chocolate party”. I love being able to do this because it’s so easy and the kids this age think it’s literally the very best thing ever!
One of the hard things about have three kids with their birthdays right around Christmas time is budget. My oldest will be 13 and he’s been happy to put off his birthday parties til January because he knows it will be easier for his friends. Hudson is just turning 5 and he’s so happy to just have his preschool friends over and play. Plus I figure it gives parents a little bit of extra Christmas shopping time! For this party, I had almost everything on hand. Because we were holding it right after preschool, I provided lunch. I let the kids pick from PB&J or ham and cheese sandwiches and then had apples, oranges and chips to go with it. For decorations, I used red and white streamers along with a green tablecloth. It brought in festive, Christmas colors and Hudson loved it. All of the decorations, including plates, forks, straws, etc all came from the Dollar Spot at Target or the Dollar Store. That’s the glory of little kids!! They don’t care! They are just happy to be having fun with their friends.
Another budget saver was that I made the cookies and cupcakes. And while I know I can make delicious cupcakes from scratch, when cake mix is on sale for .88 a box, you really can’t beat that! Pipe some frosting on top with a few decorations on top and the kids won’t know they weren’t store bought!
While I was getting sandwiches made, I started the movie (The Polar Express of course!) and let the kids play a little bit to get their wiggles out from being at school. After they finished eating some REAL food, I let them finish watching the movie and eat some popcorn. For a fun little activity, I got some cute foam craft snowmen, glitter glue and rickrack (again at the Target Dollar Spot) and let the kids decorate their own snowman. It was so CUTE to watch them work so hard on their crafts, and let me tell you, those kids can go through the glitter glue!!
Obviously to cap off the party, we sang happy birthday, drank delicious hot chocolate and ate cupcakes. I had fun straws, mini candy canes and marshmallows. We learned last year that if you put out too many “add ins”, the kids put it ALL in the hot chocolate and then end up not drinking the hot chocolate at all. So this time I kept it simple and the kids loved it.
Hudson declared this his “best day” and that it was “the best birthday ever!” so I’d say all in all it was a success!