Sunday, June 12, 2011

Castle Birthday Party!!

My "Anchor" just turned four!  Last year he wanted a purple monkey party.  I scrambled to find any kind of purple monkey paraphernalia I could find to pull off his completely random party theme.  My parents even searched New York City on their vacation for a purple monkey.  The only purple monkey they could find was in the NBC gift shop.  It was a tall order, but we made it work.  This year I got him to settle on a castle/ knight party.  

A talented friend spent all day at my house helping me make the cake shown above.  We rolled fondant and mixed frosting for hours while our kids played.  This would definitely not have been possible without her!  The bottom layer is two 9 X 13s stacked with ganache in the middle.  The towers we constructed out of cardboard and tape.  The walls were textured with a plastic mountain we pilfered from my boy's train set and brushed cocoa powder on to create contrast.  I just happened to have a chocolate graham cracker that worked for the drawbridge and covered dry spaghetti with ganache for the ropes.  The windows were piped            on and the writing was drawn on with food safe markers.  
The look on my son's face when he saw the cake was absolutely priceless!  

DETAILS:  Each child decorated their own cardboard shield, breastplate, and crown.  We were on a tight budget so these were all home made.  I drove through Burger King, bought a couple of items off the dollar menu and ask for twenty crowns.  Then I spray painted them silver with some paint that I found in my husband's garage.  (One of the perks of being married to a general contractor.)  In this picture, my oldest son is showing off his creations.  He doesn't look too happy here, but all the kids had a blast.  

Next, we had a "king's feast."  I went for the everything on a platter look and included rustic bread, chicken drumsticks, sausages, grapes and more in order to give it a more authentic medieval feel.  I had forks available, but most people just used their hands to eat.  Super yummy and fun!

After our feast we had a knighting ceremony where each child put on their armor and my husband "knighted" them and gave them their swords.  Their mission was to run through a field, knock down a castle, and attack the giant that was hiding in it.  My husband was the giant and he hid behind a make shift castle he had constructed out of drop cloths and wire.  Then we had a jousting event where the kids got to steer a golf cart and aim a "jousting stick" at a target hanging from a tree.  Adult supervision was required.  Crazy!!!  But super fun!  

I found the swords, the banner (below) and a few party favors on  The banner had free personalization so it had my son's name on it.  The torches were made out of black construction paper and red tissue.

Last but not least, here is the happy birthday boy with one of his presents.

Please leave a comment:  How do you make your children's birthdays special?

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