Flower Birthday Hats were part of my daughter’s 16th birthday party 😉 (no picking of flowers required)
I’ve been planning birthdays with my children since they were five! It is hard to believe that my eldest just turned 16 now yesterday! WOW! I really enjoyed sharing her birthday with her yesterday. It brought back memories of some of the first parties we planned together and I realized how the thread of all these co-planned birthdays is a bond we will always share. Most years we would sit down together and plan something together. It was always together so I never went into it knowing what we would come out with but I always had a lot of fun (you can hear more details about my birthday planning techniques from a lecture I have at the Waldorf in the Home conference 3 years ago at:
Waldorf Birthday Parties)
One of the first parties we planned was based on our Advent stone circle that we still had in the yard from our Advent lantern walk. We lived in Saudi Arabia at the time and we had to use stones instead of pine branches to make the Advent circle (that’s all they had in the desert LOL 😉 It took us FOREVER to cart all those stones to the circle so we left the circle there even after the lantern walk was done. It was Mosi’s (then age 7) idea to turn the circle into something magical with fairies and the party progressed from there!
Fast forward 9 years later! Mosi had been going “back and forth” about what she wanted to do. Being 16 she thinks a lot about what her own needs are and really knows herself very well for a 16-year old! She realized after a few weeks of agonizing over the idea of a “party” that the real problem was that she didn’t want a party at all. She relates to a diverse group of people and she likes to spend one-on-one time with people rather than be in large groups (for the most part) so she finally concluded that she wanted to spend individual time with each friend for her birthday. But then the quandary…it was her 16th! How could we afford to have an individual party for each friend without it being “everyday” (hey – let’s go out for ice cream at the mall) or without it being too expensive (hey – let’s take everyone individually out for dinner! Yikes!) And how to find something that each friend and Mosi would enjoy? And what about family? Brother? Sister?
We were both stumped…until I received an e-mail that the botanical gardens were selling the opportunity to release one’s “own” butterfly for its first flight into the garden – ON her birthday! She agreed that it was the perfect beautiful and symbolic activity to do on her birthday DAY (because she still had the rest of the week to plan with other friends) and that the perfect friends to enjoy it with her were “the sisters”. These two girls had been friends with the family for many years – the elder sister a good friend of Mosi and the younger sister a good friend of Sofi, Mosi’s younger sister.
So we planned her first “party” with the sisters – four sisters releasing butterflies for their first flight into the garden! Each received a certificate with their name, date and the name of the butterfly. We walked around the garden afterwards and even found some PARTY HATS 😉 After that we went to Mosi’s favorite natural cafe that always carries a wonderful selection of drinks, sandwiches, treats and cakes. LOL but only one girl wanted cake. The rest wanted smoothies! So Mosi got to enjoy a birthday Mango smoothie with her friends.
Simple, lovely, intimate, symbolic, affordable and beautiful!