04 March 2013

the nihao kai-lan party she wanted

As planned, Caila celebrated her 4th birthday at school last Wednesday...and fortunately, she was happy. Well, she should be. My fingers hurt from cutting the toppers, bottle labels, and container labels, and my arms hurt from mixing and stirring the batter for the cupcakes because I still haven’t been able to convince Hubby to get me an electric mixer. I had been up late the night before baking the cupcakes, and I had to wake up early the next day for the nuggets and frosting of the cupcakes. But of course, all these aches and pains weren’t much and I forgot about how tired I was when I saw how cute the little table in the classroom looked with everything we had prepared and how happy our daughter was on her special day. Allow me to share my first semi-DIY birthday project.

I got the Nihao Kai-lan images from the internet, designed the layouts using MS PowerPoint, and just printed them on plain white A4 paper (because I didn't have any sticker labels). After cutting them (yes, I had to cut the toppers manually with scissors, one by one), I used glue and clear scotch tape to stick them on the toothpicks, bottles, and containers. 
cupcake toppers
bottled water
containers of chicken nuggets
We had originally opted to buy nuggets from McDonald’s, but we later decided it would be more practical to buy frozen nuggets from the supermarket and fry them ourselves. The containers we got from Daiso, and we bought packs of small forks that were individually packed from there as well.

For the goodybags, we bought noisemakers and packs of crayons and notepads from Party Centre, soft play balls from Ansar Gallery, jelly snacks from Union Coop (we also bought the bottled water from there), and individually-packed waffle biscuits from Spinneys. All these we distributed in lootbags that we already had at home.

Because of my first successful attempt more than a month ago, I took on the task of baking cupcakes for the party. For the frosting, I had to cheat (I don’t have an electric mixer, remember)...I bought a few canned Pillsbury frostings and used those. Since I couldn’t find any blue icing, I just added a few drops of coloring to the vanilla one, and added white chocolate chips in the middle to make them look more appealing. The cupcakes frosted in vanilla looked plain as well, so I simply added some rainbow sprinkles.
Since the cupcakes were already chocolate, I ordered the cake in vanilla with chocolate ganache. And Fadgecakes did a great job...with both the taste, texture, and design! Hubby and I picked up the cake the day before after work, and when Caila saw it, she couldn’t stop staring. When we put it down on the table, since it was partially covered for protection, she would peek at it from one side, and then go to the other side to peek at it again. There was even a time when she said “Mommy, I want to smell my Nihao cake, dito lang at the side.” Ayun, linanghap nya nang linanghap! Hahaha!
the amazing cake
(photo taken from Fadgecakes)
And that’s how we prepared everything.
When we arrived in the classroom, the kids were still outside playing, so when they entered and saw the table set-up, we could hear almost all of them say “Wooooowwwwww!!!”
taking it all in...but still too shy to hide her enthusiasm
After they had all washed their hands, they settled down and thus began Caila’s birthday at school. There were no games or anything, just singing of the Happy Birthday song, blowing of the candles, and cake cutting. Our daughter was too excited to eat, so Hubby carried the tray and our daughter went around the classroom to distribute the cupcakes to each of her classmates and teachers.

The celebration was very short (around 20 minutes, I think), but when we got home, Caila wouldn’t stop talking about how happy she was and how much she enjoyed her little party. The following day, she said that her classmates kept telling her that they enjoyed the celebration and everything they got, especially the stuff in the goodybags. And just hearing her talking so excitedly was enough to assure me that everything I did was worth it.

By the way, don't forget to join my birthday giveaway!  The book is really informative and will help a lot in handling your money wisely.

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