Tag Archives: Party

Daddy Daughter Masquerade Ball 2014

Saturday March 1st was THE social event of the year at BISS (at least, for the girls!)

The invitation

The invitation

Daddy Daughter Ball 2014 and it was a masquerade event this year.  This was Isabelle and Owen’s 2nd ball and the excitement level was high (at least, for Isabelle!)  As like last year, the girls have all been talking about, anticipating, discussing dresses, hair styles, nail color and shoes for weeks.  Also like last year, Isabelle designed her dress and right before Chinese New Year we again went to the Fabric Market to have it made.  She envisioned a purple creation of wonderfulness and was thrilled with the results.  We had spent hours looking at all sorts of dresses on the Internet to give her extra ideas, but her original description of what she wanted was pretty much what she ended up with.  (She does say that being a Dress Designer is one of her future career options!!)

In the afternoon we went to Maddie’s house and waited for Phoebe to arrive to paint her nails.  Purple, of course!  Then, we rushed around the corner to our local hairdresser’s to have her hair done.  Last year she had french braids and curls, and this year she chose to have 2 french braids joining at the back and then very straight hair.   Home to get dressed and put a little bit of make up on!  I did some glitter eye shadow for her and pink lip gloss.

Nail Painting with Maddie

Nail Painting with Maddie

Her beautiful french braid (wish she would sit still long enough for me to practice on her - then I wouldn't have to pay $3 to have it done by a professional!)

Her beautiful french braid (wish she would sit still long enough for me to practice on her – then I wouldn’t have to pay $3 to have it done by a professional!)

Owen was also getting ready, super-stud-Bond-like in his tux and matching bow tie.  My hubby and daughter looked amazing.  At 5:45 they left to enjoy the fun of the evening.

My handsome hubby and gorgeous girl.

My handsome hubby and gorgeous girl.

Isabelle was very specific about the detail on her dress!

Isabelle was very specific about the detail on her dress!

Oliver was testing the various masks we have at home and couldn’t resist getting in a few photos!

With masks on!  Isabelle is ready to go with her lovely furry cape.

With masks on! Isabelle is ready to go with her lovely furry cape.

Even Tetley got in on the action.

Even Tetley got in on the action.

This was the plan for the night:

The evening plans

The evening agenda

I think Owen was a little bit relieved to also see this sign:

YEAH!

YEAH!

The Dance Floor

The Dance Floor

Once Daddy and Daughter had left the house, Oliver and I got ready to go to Katrina’s house.  10 lovely lonely ladies (plus 6 sons!) met to share some nibbles and cocktails while the D&D’s were dancing!  Oliver had fun with some friends while the Mums were enjoying adult girlie time.  At 9:30 the party goers returned and we continued it for another couple of hours.  Initially there was lots of action from all the kids, but this is what it looked like after about 30 minutes:

Movie and chillax time!

Movie and chillax time!

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A “Drink the Bar Dry” Leaving Party

A downside of Ex-pat living is the goodbye’s that have to be made, to friends that have been quickly made in our environment.  Rob & Jen are off to Bangkok, Thailand at the end of February and as they cannot pack any alcohol, they decided to hold a “Drink the Bar Dry” party to try and get rid of it all in a fun way.  It was a little unusual to get an invite that said, “PLEASE do not bring a bottle!”  Instead we were asked to bring a plate of finger food to share.  Owen and I had fun with this and made mini jacket potatoes stuffed with different cheeses and Thyme Gougere’s (which were delicious).  It was lovely to taste the wonderful selection of food that everyone had brought!

The evening was a fun mix of people from Emerald living, as well as colleagues and work friends of Rob & Jen’s.  It quickly moved into Karaoke and several of our friends surprised us with their strong singing voices!  I managed one duet with JC before Owen said he would disown me if I sang any more!!

Squeezing as many party goers as possible onto the staircase for a goodbye photo opportunity.

Squeezing as many party goers as possible onto the staircase for a goodbye photo opportuni

Some of the girls towards the end of the evening.
Jane, Marie, Lin, Jen, Jane among this fun loving group!

Rob & Jen love Karaoke, so they have many props  – wigs, fake tattoo sleeves, glasses and instruments.   They were kind enough to let us borrow some of these for Isabelle’s party last September, and they really make a difference to the fun.  It is amazing to see the personas people portray when they can hide behind the props!!!

It was another fun night out.  Owen and I are sorry to see them leave – lovely people, lovely family.

Blue Frog, Bouncy Castle and Sports – Birthday boy celebrations

My lovely little boy celebrated his birthday this week.  He has been talking about “turning 6” for several weeks and has been very excited about his party.  I have been so busy at work,  I am totally amazed that his party went as smoothly as it did, as everything  was last minute this year!

On the day of his birthday he had a school trip to the Wild Animal Kingdom.  His topic this term is all about the “Carnival of Animals” so this was an added bonus on his special day!  After breakfast, he  had time to open a couple of presents.  He had been asking for months for a skateboard, so guess what he got from Mum and Dad!!

Yeah - I got the skateboard!!  It is wicked.

Yeah – I got the skateboard!! It is wicked.

At the end of the day, we took Oliver out to Blue Frog restaurant at the Kerry Parkside (his choice for his birthday dinner).  We stopped at Baker & Spice on the way back to get some yummy cakes.  We stuck Oliver’s candle in his and sang Happy Birthday back at home!  Owen was messing around with the plate and kept pulling it away from Oliver!  He eventually blew it out and made a wish!

I WILL blow that candle out!

I WILL blow that candle out!

A few days later it was party time!  Oliver had requested a party of sports and games and wanted to invite all his class.  We hired the Function Room at The Emerald, ordered a Pirate bouncy castle and hired a couple of coaches from Sports World to help run the sports and games.  We had the party on Friday evening and invited as many parents who wanted to enjoy a glass of fizz at the end of the week too.

Happy Birthday, my sweet boy.

Happy Birthday, my sweet boy.

Once all the children arrived, they started on the Bouncy Castle.  It was a beautiful day, blue skies, sunshine and 23 degree heat.  All the kids were running around outside and having fun on the Bouncy Castle before the Lego tower challenge.  4 teams building the tallest possible towers in a 10 minute period.  This was the perfect lead up to pizza!!

Scrambling for the Lego to build the towers!

Scrambling for the Lego to build the towers!

Oliver holding his tower up!

Oliver holding his tower up!

Pizza time!

Pizza time!

After pizza had been wolfed down, the coaches from Sports World arrived and it was over to them to manage the chaos and mayhem!  They did a fantastic job of keeping 18 boys and girls active, competitive and paying attention.  There was just under an hour of running around playing lots of different chasing games, tagging games and ball games.

Ready, set, go!  It is time for Zombie Tagging.

Ready, set, go! It is time for Zombie Tagging.

They were attentive to the coaches and generally played by the rules!

They were attentive to the coaches and generally played by the rules!

The last 15 minutes of the party (only 2 hours, but felt like 6!!) was wind down time and birthday cake time.  We have had great success with Sweet Ever After cupcakes for the last couple of birthday parties, so we ordered from them again.  We had a flock of Angry Birds for all the children!

Angry Birds!

Angry Birds!

Another birthday candle to blow out too……

2 Cakes this time…...

2 Cakes this time……

Oliver really enjoyed his party and I hope that all his friends had fun – it was certainly lovely to watch them all playing.  We were all back home by 7.30pm and ready to put our feet up!  Relieved that the celebrations are over now!!

Happy Halloween 2013

I love the Halloween time of year!  The crisp evenings, the beautiful leaf colors, the spooky decorations and, of course, Trick or Treat!

This year, Oliver wanted to be Dracula and Isabelle wanted to be Wonder Girl.  However, when Isabelle’s costume arrived it was far too big, so she was back to a witch for school dress up day, and then bride of Dracula for the party.

The weekend before Halloween, we all decorated our house:

Ready for Halloween.  Check out the skeletons pulling each other up to the balcony!

Ready for Halloween. Check out the skeletons pulling each other up to the balcony!

Owen put the ultraviolet light back into the porch light and it made a great effect on the white spiders web!  We spent ages getting the skeletons just right.  They are supposed to look like they are helping each other up to the balcony and they are supposed to glow in the dark.  They did not glow like we hoped, so a little of the effect was lost!  Owen had also made some scary potions (glitter and glow sticks) which lasted most of Trick or Treat night.

Scary potions that glowed all night!

Scary potions that glowed all night!

We were also 1 of the most popular houses on the Trick or Treat route as we were giving away glow bangles!  These were hugely popular with all the children.  Like last year, the whole neighborhood was out and about by 5.15pm!  Oliver and I managed to cover all the streets within 90 minutes and he had an overflowing sack of loot!  Owen and Isabelle were giving out the glow bangles and candy.

Glow bangles ready to go!

Glow bangles ready to go!

The following night, The Emerald had its annual Halloween Party at our Club House.  Everyone dressed up:

Count Dracula and Bride of Dracula.

Count Dracula and Bride of Dracula.

Isabelle's make up looked good!!

Isabelle’s make up looked good!!

Oliver did not like the teeth too much!

Oliver did not like the teeth too much!

Wonder Woman, Bride of Dracula, Count Dracula and Batman.

Wonder Woman, Bride of Dracula, Count Dracula and Batman.

The kids loved the party.  There are always plenty of activities for them, like skeleton tossing, pumpkin carving and zombie chasing!  The party ends at 9.30pm so it is not too late for the little ones.  All of their friends were there and dressed up in different costumes.

Amelie, Oliver, Isabelle, Ava, Sarah and Emma

Amelie, Oliver, Isabelle, Ava, Sarah and Emma

Another Chinese Halloween celebrated in style!

St Patrick’s Charity Ball

Saturday night was the St Patrick’s Day Ball at the Kerry Parkside Hotel.  This ball is supposed to be the event of the year, so we were very excited to get tickets. Our group of friends was split across 3 tables of 10.  It was certainly a busy night – there must have been over 1000 people there – all ex-pats of course!

Menu, champers and hat

Menu, champers and hat

The ballroom was packed full of tables  that were laden with glasses and goodies.

The decorated table

The decorated table

The tables all had opened (with no lids!) bottles of Baileys and Whiskey.  There were hats, feather boas and masks.  The glitter from the green hat got everywhere!  You can also see the “goody bags” on each chair.  These were filled with a strange mix of crisps/chips, umbrella, eco water bottle, flash drive, miniature bottle of Jamiesons, bottle of milk tea and a baseball hat.

Feather Boas, Mask and Glitter hat

Feather Boas, Mask and Glitter hat

Because this was a fancy ball with everyone dressing up, my friends and I all went to the fabric market to have dresses made.  I had seen a dress that I really liked – Jodie Foster wore it to an Award Ceremony in USA.  Here is her dress:

The Jodie Foster dress that I really liked and wanted copied!

The Jodie Foster dress that I really liked and wanted copied!

And, here is my fabulous copy:

The front

The front

and the back:

I love this dress!

I love this dress!

I was absolutely thrilled with the end result.  It fits like a glove, is a great copy and cost me about £60/$100!  This took a week to make.  It was the same people who had made Isabelle’s beautiful dress for the Daddy/Daughter ball.

All of the ladies looked lovely in their dresses.  All the men were very smart in their Dinner Jackets!

Owen's broken arm

Owen’s broken arm

As you can see from this photo, Owen could not get his jacket on due to the fact that his arm is in a cast.  He broke it last Wednesday.  Oliver and Owen were riding their bikes and Oliver got a little distracted – Owen went over the handle bars and BAM, CRASH, CRACK – 1 broken arm (bruised ribs and arms too).  He has been assured that in 4 weeks time it should be mended. 😦

We tried another photo later that evening:

I stood the other side this time.......

I stood the other side this time…….

It was a fun night with our friends.  There was plenty of entertainment – alot of it Irish, but some Chinese too.  Later in the evening, a band played so that everyone could dance.  The Chinese dancers were fantastic.

Chinese dancing

Dancers from Thailand

With acrobatics too.

With acrobatics too.

It was quite the mix of music and displays.

A traditional Irish band

A traditional Irish band

The St Patricks Ball is a charity event which meant that not only were the tickets very expensive, but we also got “persuaded” to buy some raffle tickets.  I would have liked to be the lucky winner as it was a fabulous trip to Ireland – all expenses paid!  We were not lucky that night……

As the tickets were so expensive, we were a little disappointed that some of the drinks ran out early in the evening.  However, I was impressed with the food – for mass catering it was a very good meal.

John & Jenny.  Jenny had just returned back to China on Saturday morning and was doing really well to stay awake!

John & Jenny. Jenny had just returned back to China on the Saturday morning and was doing really well to stay awake!

Marie & Tim

Marie & Tim

Jane & Kevin

Jane & Kevin

Jane & JC

Jane & JC

Brian & Suzanne

Brien & Suzanne

Katrina & David

Katrina & David

Oh, how I laughed.....

It is so nice to be with people who make me laugh until my sides hurt.  It really does make a difference to life 🙂

Right before the bell struck for us to turn into pumpkins

Fun & Giggles

It was a lovely night out.  I love an excuse to get dressed up!  We will not be going back next year, so it was nice to have it done it this year.

Party time – Emerald style…..

I have been travelling so much in 2013 and now I am trying to catch up on posts.  We have also had some issues with our internet access (it is the season of changing Party officials, after all!!)

The lead up to Christmas was full of festivity and there were lots of events that Owen and I were invited to.  Jane and JC hosted a Stars and Stockings Party which was huge fun.

Stockings and Stars!

Stockings and Stars!  Most of the girls showing off their stockings.  I just wore Star earrings!!

Some of the Boys

Some of the Boys

Thanks to plenty of champagne and some great music (Jane and JC's 14 year old son was DJ!) there was plenty of dancing.  And dancing in 80's style!

Thanks to plenty of champagne and some great music (Jane and JC’s 14 year old son was DJ!) there was plenty of dancing. And dancing in 80’s style!

And, remember this one?

And, remember this one?

It was a fantastic evening.  Not only was Jane and JC’s son the DJ, but he also tended bar for us all – mixing perfect cocktails dressed in a tux!  I am sure we all gave him some good stories for his friends!!

The party that kicked off the Christmas season celebrations!

The party that kicked off the Christmas season celebrations!

More Christmas parties the following weekend: friends from work on Saturday night and then Sunday was open house at Jane and Kevin’s house.  She had over 12 children all doing arts and crafts – decorating cookies, making Christmas tree ornaments and colouring.  It was loud and noisy with so many kids having so much fun.  It was a lovely relaxing Sunday afternoon catching up with friends, discussing Christmas plans, sipping mulled wine, eating mince pies and other traditional goodies.

Open House at Jane and Kevin's

Open House at Jane and Kevin’s

Oliver’s 5th Birthday Party – AdventureZone

Oliver’s 5th birthday party was at AdventureZone at Kerry Parkside.  This is a great location for kids to have fun with slides, climbing frames and jumping areas.  We had booked the Circus Circus room with a Clown for Oliver’s birthday celebration.  He had invited all his class to his celebration and he had so much fun.  Owen and I especially liked that the kids could make as much mess as they wanted and we could just walk away at the end of the party!  No clean up responsibility!!

Circus Circus Room at AdventureZone, Kerry Parkside

Circus Circus Room at AdventureZone, Kerry Parkside

Up the stairs to Circus Circus Room!

Up the stairs to Circus Circus Room!

Oliver’s birthday “cake” was a a selection of vanilla and chocolate cupcakes grouped together and made to look like a race track.

Oliver's Cupcake Birthday Cake

Oliver’s Cupcake Birthday Cake

Such a good idea to have a cake built in this way, because it makes it so easy to give a cupcake away!  We even got the individual boxes to give each cupcake away as part of the goody bag!  We had also booked a clown through Kerry Parkside to help with the party.  He made balloon animals, guns, water pistols, flowers as well as provide a magic show with Oliver as special guest.

Oliver as special assistant helping in the magic show

Oliver as special assistant helping in the magic show

Pulling all the tissue out of the Clown's mouth.......

Pulling all the tissue out of the Clown’s mouth…….

Pulling and......

Pulling and……

Pulling and.......

Pulling and…….

Pulling and done!

Pulling and done! Wow! What a lot came out……… Where did it come from?

Oliver loved being special assistant in this magic act.  He was laughing so much when he removed all the tissue out of his mouth and then seeing how much “ribbon” came out of the Clown’s mouth.  He was pulling for ages……

Blowing out his "5" candle

Blowing out his “5” candle

"I did a great job as assistant"!

“I did a great job as assistant”!

Oliver with all his friends at his party.

Oliver with all his friends at his party.  LiYang, Syrah, Duncan, Emma, Benjamin, Isabelle, Ava, Ethan, Alexander, Griff, Daniel, Orville, Seren, Charlie, Natalie, Erin and Charles

Sara, Oliver and Owen

Sara, Oliver and Owen. Our littlest chick’s 5th birthday party! Where does the time go……

Oliver had a fabulous time at his party.  As this was his first “real”party, he was so excited about the whole experience.  He could not wait to open all his presents at home and was so thankful for everything he got.  He spent the rest of the afternoon playing with transformers and lego.

Oliver had a great time, but it was an expensive outlay.  Booking AdventureZone is not cheap, but we are so grateful that he had such a great experience.