KIDDOS: Ceramica birthday

As always, I make Lucy and Alice have a joint birthday party, since they turn a year older just two weeks apart. So far, at ages five and nine, they still love this idea. I'm going to milk that until I no longer can.

This year I took the easy way out of birthday party planning and splurged on a 'destination party' for the first time ever. In the past, as you've seen here on the blog, I always do it up fun and big in our backyard or at a park. For several reasons, I just didn't have the energy this year, and decided to take ten girls to Ceramica, just down the street in the Vista Village shopping complex.

Ceramica is a paint-your-own ceramics studio, a place the girls adore but I rarely take them. We've made some really cute platters with handprints for grandparents 'gifts, but in the past they've been a bit too young for art making like this.

I made my favorite easy cupcakes, these vanilla ones from Fannie Farmer's Baking Book, and handmade goody bags with a pencil, tiny notebook, and colorful bracelets from our gift stash at home. We reserved the private studio room for free, where they let us set up the treats and gave us our very own artist helper. Turns out, the party cost about the same as I would've spent at a home party, much to my surprise. It's only $5 a kiddo for the studio fee at Ceramica, and I pre-picked out 5" blank tiles for each of the girls to paint ($4 each). Plus, both Lucy and Alice got a large birthday themed plate, complete with all their friends' signatures and thumbprints as keepsakes, all for $96! It was so worth it. The girls thought it was the most fun birthday ever.