Make, Jane, make!: A Super Fifth Birthday!


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Wednesday, February 13, 2013

A Super Fifth Birthday!

Like some kind of clockwork child, my eldest son is now into superheroes.
His current favourite? Batman.
Why? "He has a cape and a mask and spiky things on his arms."

Ahh, accessories. Men love them too. Just in a different way. (For instance, my husband said he always wanted to be a hockey goalie because of the cool pads and gear... but that's a story for another day.) Today's story is about my son's super fifth birthday.

My son requested a Batman cake, but inspired by this wonderful cake recipe and the fact that the kids see cake simply as a vehicle for icing, I opted to make cupcakes instead. (Higher icing to cake ratio and less uneaten cake left on the plates :)

The cupcake toppers were made of royal icing using this tutorial from Dough & Batter as my guide.

I was a little nervous about making something that seemed so brittle and fragile for the first time with a mere 24 hours left until the party but I decided to try them anyway...

...And in spite of my anxiety, everything seemed to be going well. Until I noticed the cheap, no-name brand parchment paper starting to pucker underneath my icing.

Not to be deterred, I pressed on and hoped that everything would turn out in the end.

What you don't see in these pictures - my crazy, desperate attempts (two hours until party time!) to release the toppers from puckered, wet parchment that didn't allow them to dry completely. I don't know if I'd used better quality parchment or if there had been more drying time if this problem could have been avoided.

Luckily, after only two or three cracked toppers, I happened upon a solution: cutting the parchment paper around each topper (allowing me to handle each topper individually). Then I could gently peel the parchment off the topper (rather than trying to lift the topper off the paper).

Of course, we had to have some healthy snacks too.

We enjoyed some protein packed white bean humus with veggies.

For their activity, we skipped traditional party games since we had mixed ages in attendance and I didn't want the younger children to feel left out. Instead we had a decorate your own superhero cape station. Unfortunately, I didn't manage to snap a pic of the creations in progress ... but here are a few of the finished projects modelled by their designers.

I pre-sewed all the capes and cut out felt shapes and initials for all the kids which I backed with Heat n' Bond. The kids decided on the layout and I ironed them on.  This made for really cute, adult-assistance-required capes, but the kids had to come up one by one and weren't able to sit down together and craft at the same time. Next superhero party (because the other boy will surely want a super fifth birthday too), I may opt to decorate one side of their cape for them and then let them decorate the other side with fabric markers.

Anyway, another party into the books and my son has already told me that for his sixth birthday party he wants everyone to have mohawks... Not sure how that will go over with all the parents when they come to pick up their newly coiffed children though.

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