I found some lovely Disney Fairy invitations on family.com (which also has lots of pretty Disney fairy things to make) and edited them slightly. I then added glitter paint to the flowers and fairy wings.
We held it at the local community centre and it is a great space - big enough to lay the food table at one end, have craft tables at the other and space in the middle for the party games. In addition to balloons, I decorated the hall with some pink netting and crepe flowers tied into swathes.
I decided to keep to traditional party games: musical chairs (with a twist), pass-the-parcel, pin the butterfly on the flower and musical statues. I also set up activity tables to keep them occupied when they first arrived/ inbetween games: a craft (dragonfly peg magnets), fairy colouring and tattoo transfers.
Instead of using chairs, we played musical pillows to start. Each child had a pillow or cushion, then the pillows got taken away a few at a time and when the music stopped they had to all fit onto the remaining pillows. It ended up with all 18 children on one pillow which they all found funny.
We also played pin the butterfly on the flower. I had great fun painting a flower and adding a few fun bugs to it. I scanned a butterfly that Sophie had drawn and added a space to write their names on, then printed and cut out the image and finished with a square of double-sided sticky tape to the back ready to peel.
I was a bit concerned that I was being overly ambitious with the dragonfly peg magnet craft: a) it was a bit fiddly; b) I was letting them loose with my die-cutter; and c) would the boys like it; but I needn't have worried. I left my 16 year old niece in charge and almost everyone made one, with one of the boys making four! Details on how they made these to follow later ...
I decided to get green paper bags for the party bags (I don't like the flimsy plastic ones) and folded the top down and sealed with a label (Tinkerbell for the girls and Terence for the boys and their names). The dragonflies they had made were then pegged to the top at the end of the party. The only downside of sealing the bags before the party was that I couldn't put the cake into the bags as they left.
The whole party was a great success. I know how incredibly lucky I was to have hubbie running the games (he is a natural party entertainer!) and the help of both sets of grandparents, my sister and her two teenage children. And most importantly Sophie had a great time and there were no tears for the first time in five years!
© 2011 Nicola Noble