A Calmer Kid’s Party on a Budget

This weekend Poppy turns 9 and we’ve agreed to a huge garden party, our first one since the very expensive 5th birthday party some years ago.

It didn’t start out as expensive we thought that if we made all of our own food it would be fine, but we also had this idea that we should cater for adults too.

You’ll know if you have school aged children that kids party food can look ever so inviting when taking your child to their friend’s birthday bash. As poppy was young and most parents would stay we thought we’d cater for them too. This meant we spent a week making fancy salads, cakes, scones, quiches and canapés along with the usual party food.

As the day rolled around the parents dropped off their children and waved goodbye in a flash. As a parent who’s always stayed close by, I was a little taken aback. Suddenly my husband and I were in charge of 30 five year olds and we didn’t even know all of their names!

The rice Krispy buns and tuna sandwiches disappeared in a flash, whereas the meringues, the scones and the salads just sat there completely untouched.

We were of course thrilled when the end of the party arrived and every child had a home, swapping the food in the party bags for lentil loaf and broad bean salad tubs, we decided we’d at least palm off some of the food.

So this year her party plans to be even bigger as she’s recently moved schools and needs to make new friends, we’re expecting quite a lot of guests. Although she’s four years older, there won’t be a salad in sight, they’ll be sausage rolls, cheese on sticks and cornflake nests, and in fact she could probably do the catering herself!

I’ve also made some lavender and elderflower cordial in advance to add to the lemonade, as I’m hoping it keeps them all a little bit calmer than last time, when we had kids riding the goats bareback and using the washing line for practicing trapeze acts.

There was also one particular boy who was the son of a lord who had an obsession with kicking my husband in the family jewels. He’s dug out his old rugby kit and will be wearing that on the day complete with protective cup!

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