Simply Celebrate Life!
North Pole Party
Christmas is “the most favorite time of year” according to my daughter. Yes, she mentioned the presents under the Christmas tree, but she also said, “Yeah it’s Christmas and we can have our Polar Express Party, who can I invite?” I thought for a minute about doing another Polar Express party, and then I decided to change it up a little, and plan a fun North Pole Adventure…all the same concept, but with just a little twist.
I used an empty paper towel roll to use as a scroll, and turned it into a personalized guest invite, straight from the North Pole.
We hope you’ve been NICE,
’cause no NAUGHTY children
are allowed at this party!
Come join us on a
NORTH POLE adventure
filled with fun, treats, and
a whole lotta sweets!
Awww…my sweet delivery elf!
Snowflakes and candy canes ended up being the highlight of this party, with a festive green to brighten things up.
I used my white snowy tablecloth and striped red ribbon across to resemble a Candy Cane. I set out bright green Placemats (it’s just plain paper that I also used for decorating cookies and making our craft… less cleanup!) Red snowflake paper plates fit great with this set up. Sometimes it’s the decorative plates I see at the store that spark the table design.
I brought in the snow with these $1.00 store snowflakes and mini white Christmas baubles to hang above our party table for that wintery North Pole feel. It’s hard to capture the feel from this photo, but it’s worth a try. It was truly a winter wonderland!
These special North Pole signs became our guests seating tags and food tags. I simply used a large gumdrop as the base, and a painted popcicle stick for the pole.
My cookie display is really just a dinner plate and sugar cup. I added the scalloped paper and ribbon around for trim, and knew this would be a keeper for another party. All I’ll need to do is coordinate my colors. These pinwheel cookies were perfect for my theme don’t you think?
Red Velvet Pinwheel Cookies
1 pouch (1lb 1.5 oz.) sugar cookie mix
1/4 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 package (3 oz.) cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons unsweetened baking Cocoa
1/2 tsp. red gel food color
Stir cookie mix, butter, cream cheese, and egg until dough forms. Divide dough in half. Add Cocoa and red food coloring to 1 half. Mix until well blended. Place red dough between 2 (17 x 12 inch) sheets of waxed paper, roll out to 12 x 7 inch rectangle. Repeat with plain dough. Remove top sheets of waxed paper from both doughs. Invert plain dough onto red dough. And gently press out layered dough and trim edges. Remove top sheet of waxed paper from plain dough. Starting with the short side, roll up dough in bottom sheet of waxed paper. Wrap tightly and freeze for 2 hours until firm.
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Cut dough into 1/4 inch slices. Place on an ungreased cookie sheet about 2 inches apart. Bake for 12 -15 minutes and cool on rack for 10 minutes.
DIY Christmas Trees
I knew I needed just one more detail for my centerpiece, and a friend of mine who’s been party planning too, helped me complete my table setting with this bright idea. Thanks Michelle!
I used cones as my base and probably used about 5 sheets of paper. Just cut your paper into 1 1/2 inch strips, then cut slits about an 1 inch in length and 1/4 wide. I used a paper shredder which made this project super quick, but it will only work if you have the reverse button. Starting from the bottom, use a glue gun to attach and overlap with each layer.
Mrs. Claus Goodies
Mrs. Claus cooked up some special dinner treats which were kid approved. I used baking pans to help serve and display the goodies for a REAL kitchen feel!
We all know that many kids, not all, can be picky or eat very little. So I went with the mini size servings and foods that all kids seem to enjoy.
Mini Soup Shots
Chicken noodle soup is a popular kid soup, don’t you think? It’s worth a shot… Ha Ha!
Mac ‘n Cheese Cups
Mac ‘n Cheese at our house is a favorite. Whether you whip up a quick box or make your own from scratch, they’ll look even more enticing in these individual cupcake liners.
Cut mini circles out of your sliced bread (save the rest for croutons) and with a toothpick attach a nugget, pickle, and small leaf of lettuce. No one at this party ate just one!
Salad on a Stick
Even picky eaters might just like this salad twist.
Easy Cheesy Pizza
This was quick to prepare and a pretty popular one too! All I did was add cheese and pepperoni on bread, and toasted in the oven for a few minutes. This plain and simple one was probably the most popular!
This set up inspired me to throw a Santa Baby Brunch. As soon as I put together this table, I immediately thought Santa Party! I mentioned it to Heidi, and she ran with the idea AND is still running! I gladly handed it over to her, so she could create her own party magic.
I can’t wait to see what she’ll come up with!
My North Pole signs are actually just foam boards I saved from a box that packaged an order I received. I kept them on hand for a while, until I finally had a creative idea for them.
Chocolate Covered Pretzels
Cotton Candy Sticks
White cotton candy fit right in with my Santa table set up!
Chocolate Drizzled Donuts
Want to whip up a quick and easy treat, try using store bought mini donuts and fancy them up with chocolate swirls.
Chocolate Covered Bacon
Now this is not an ordinary kid treat, but when I think about how much my daughter likes bacon and loves anything chocolate, it was worth a try. I personally think it’s an acquired taste, and some may LOVE it, but I’m glad I tested them out because even our pickiest guests devoured these in seconds!
Party Favor Bags
Sometimes I think we make a little too much for the kids when it comes to desserts, so I decided to plan ahead and make these cute paper bags for our guests to fill up and take home for later!
Kiddie Cocoa Bar
Cocoa bars are pretty popular during this time of year. I put together this simple bar for my little guests who like just the basics.
Cocoa and Cookie Cocktail
Fancy up your serving cups with a rim of chocolate and peppermint or candy sprinkles (first dip rim in Corn Syrup or chocolate, then a sprinkle of your choice). Throw a cookie on a stick on top, and your little guests will be in Cocoa Heaven!
I attempted to make marshmallows and I succeeded, YEAH! For some reason I thought it would be more difficult, but I’m sure glad I tried these out. Here’s a super easy recipe from Mrs. Betty Crocker.
Butter for greasing
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 1/2 tablespoons unflavored gelatin
1/2 cup cold water
1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup water
1 teaspoon pure peppermint extract
8 – 10 drops red food color
Generously grease bottom and sides of 11 x 7 inch glass baking dish with butter. Dust with 1 tablespoon of the powdered sugar. In the bowl of a stand mixer, sprinkle gelatin over 1/2 cup cold water to soften, and set aside.
In a 2 quart saucepan, heat granulated sugar, corn syrup, salt, and 1/2 cup water over low heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Heat to a boil and cook without stirring for about 30 minutes to 240 degrees on a candy thermometer or until small amount of mixture is dropped into a cup of very cold water and forms a ball that holds it’s shape, but is still pliable. Remove from heat.
Slowly pour syrup into softened gelatin while beating on low speed. Increase speed to high and beat 8 – 10 minutes or until mixture is white and has almost tripled in volume. Add peppermint extract and beat for 1 minute more. Pour into baking dish, patting lightly with wet hands. Drop food coloring randomly onto top of marshmallow mixture. Pull table knife through food color to create swirl pattern over top. Let stand uncovered for 8 hours or overnight.
Dust cutting board with 1 tablespoon powdered sugar. Place remaining powdered sugar in a small bowl. To remove marshmallow mixture, loosen sides from dish and gently lift in one piece onto cutting board. Using a sharp knife greased with butter, cut into 1 inch squares (11 rows by 7 rows). Dust bottom and sides of each marshmallow by dipping into bowl of powdered sugar. Store in airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 weeks.
Chocolate Swirled Spoons
Dip your spoons in white chocolate and drizzle with a little chocolate dyed red, and you have these yummy spoons to stir that Cocoa up.
Elves at Work
I like to keep the children busy, which seems to make my job as a host easier, and definitely keeps everyone happier. Here’s a fun and simple craft you can make at your next Holiday party, that is sure to be a hit, because it’s made out of candy of course!
Set out some toothpicks, a handful of mini gumdrops, a large one for the center and let the kids create their one of a kind snowflake.