Snack Time! 

     The best part of any party has to be the sweet treats!  Cake, cookies, ice cream, and more… there are so many choices it is often hard to decide on which to choose.  In recent years cupcakes have taken stage as the centerpiece of many dessert tables.  With a tasty morsel self-contained in its own pretty wrapper, it’s no wonder that these sweet treats have become so popular at birthday parties and weddings. 
     One of the best cupcake recipes I have ever come across features two of my very favorite foods: chocolate cake and cookie dough!  Who would have thought to marry these two tasty snacks? If you have a birthday, office party, or have a craving for ooey-gooey goodness, give these yummy treats a try.  You won’t regret it!

Cookie Dough Cupcakes

You will need:
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 (18.25 ounce) box chocolate cake mix
  • 1 1/3 cups water
  • 1/3 cup canola oil
  • 3 eggs

Mix together flour, baking soda, and salt in small bowl.  Cream the butter, white sugar, and brown sugar with electric mixer until smooth.  Add 1 egg and the vanilla extract.  Mix in flour until incorporated.  Fold in chocolate chips.  Form dough into tablespoon-sized balls, place onto baking sheet, and freeze until solid (about 2 hours).

Beat 3 eggs in large bowl with electric mixer.  Add cake mix, water, and canola oil and continue to beat for 2 minutes on medium speed.  Spoon into muffin cups with paper liners, filling each 2/3 full.  Place a cookie dough ball on the top center of each cupcake.

Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the cake portion of the cupcake comes clean.    

Makes 24 cupcakes  

Recipe from allrecipes.com


Planning Your Party : Step #3

 Step 3: It’s All in the Decorations

Balloons, banners, confetti…there are lots of options when it comes to decorating for your upcoming party.  Consider your party space when choosing your decorations and measure areas where you would like to hang party banners or signs.

A favor bag is a great way to thank your guests for attending.  Your favor bag can include something as simple as flavored popcorn with a decorative tag or crayons and coloring pages.

Of course, the centerpiece of any birthday is the cake.  Cupcakes are an easy and convenient alternative to the traditional birthday cake.  Decorate your cupcakes with cupcake toppers or fondant pieces that fit in with your party theme.

Handmade decorations offer a unique touch to any event and offer party themes that cannot be found in your local craft store.  When planning your next party check out The Birthday House for great ideas for a memorable event!


Planning Your Party: Step #2

 Step 2: Invite Your Guests   
     Now that you have your theme chosen and your venue secured, it’s time to get those invitations into the hands of your guests.  Great planning will be a waste if you don’t have guests to attend!
     Create your list of possible guests and send out invites at least two to three weeks in advance.  Be sure to include the following on your invitations: who the party is for, the party theme, location, date and time, as well as your contact info for rsvps.  You may want to add a map and directions on the back of the invitation or include a separate sheet.
     Don’t forget to let parents know if you want them to stay for the party if you need a little extra supervision – a great way to say this is “Parents welcome to stay”.  And remember, it's perfectly acceptable to call your guests to make sure they received their invitation and if the plan to attend.  

Real Parties: Turtle Themed Baby Shower

Slow Poke Turtle Collection

Planning Your Party : Step #1

Step 1: Choose your theme

   Here is a super cute Big Green Tractor party that celebrated a first year milestone!  Choosing a theme is the first step in creating a great party.  Your theme is great inspiration for selecting and creating everything from invitations and decorations to food and signature drinks!

     There are millions of themes to choose from so choosing one can be a  daunting task.  Make it easy on yourself by narrowing down to the one or two things that the party girl or boy enjoys most - be it a specific animal, color, or toy.  Once you have made a theme decision, take time to search online for ideas on decoration, food and drink, as well as games that incorporate your theme.  

     Coming next... Step 2: Invite Your Guests