Idea No.

13756

Chocolate Party for 30yr & 1yr - Chocolate Martini

Award

Date

June 2006

From

Christa in Creston, BC Canada

Special Mention

30th Thirtieth Party

Chocolate Party for a 1st Birthday & 30th Birthday. I consider myself one of the lucky people, to be able to share a Birthday with my daughter. This year was a special year for both of us, with her turning 1 and myself turning 30, so I decided to combine our parties.

Since chocolate is something both kids & adults love, a chocolate party was in the making. I started with a pink and brown colour scheme. I bought my daughter a lovely pink dress & myself a flirty brown one. We had the party on our back porch, so there was lots of room for kids to play outside & adults to sit & relax.

For invitations I focused mostly on my daughter.  What could be more perfect for a chocolate party, than a chocolate bar invite. I looked on eBay at different Hershey bar wrappers but didn't like any of them. I ended up working with a local graphic design artist & came up with the "Ella Bella Bar".  She made a wrapper with a brown background to match the Hershey's wrappers. I got my Hershey's bars at Costco in a box of 36 & found that to be the best value. On the label we used a Martha Stewart idea from her Kid's magazine, from the Spring 2005 issue.

I took a picture of my daughter & we edited it to only be her head. Across the top of the label we wrote Ella Bella Bar. Under that was the picture of Ella's head, all cute, round & smiley. Across the bottom we wrote She is sweeter than Chocolate. The writing was in pink.  To finish off the label we added various size pink polka dots and the whole thing had a retro, yet modern effect. On the back side of the wrapper we tried to mimic a real nutrition label. Across the top we wrote nutrition facts. Under that serving size: One sweet 1st Birthday. Beside that we had Amount/serving %DV and under that Fun.100% Laughter.100% Friends.100% Birthday wishes .100% Hugs & Kisses.100%. That was written in pink too & also had polka dots with the brown background. I was thrilled!

For the detailed invite, I was inspired by Willy Wonka. I made golden tickets that I printed on gold paper I bought at the scrapbook store. The ticket said: Greetings to you the lucky finder of the Golden Ticket! Present this ticket at the (family name) Family Chocolate Factory for a Scrumdidiyyumtios 1st Birthday celebration for Ella & to Celebrate Christa's 30th birthday. Join us for this decadent Chocolate Indulgence on (give particulars here). I used glue stick to stick the wrapper together on the bar & tucked the ticket inside. Everyone loved them!

When I started planning this party I had no idea how hard themed chocolate decorations would be to find, so I had to really look. Since pink & brown were my colours, I got pink streamers, tablecloths, napkins, plates, cups, cutlery & balloons at the Dollar Tree. To customize, I had the image of my daughter's face printed on round labels & stuck them on the napkins, cups & tablecloths. I looked for weeks on the internet & eBay for brown balloons and found they are very popular in the UK, but not so much in North America. I did finally get some through eBay, but they were expensive & small. I have to say it was worth it though, when I made bunches of brown & pink balloons. They looked great. I also really wanted some kind of Hershey's decoration but all I could get was a pink Mylar Hershey's kiss balloon. I even phoned the Hershey's factory in Pennsylvania. No streamers, balloons, paper cups, nothing. They really are missing out on a possible market.

To finish things off, I cut circles out of chocolate brown card stock & put the round, head stickers on them. I hung them from the ceiling with pink curling ribbon. My daughter especially loved these and wanted to touch & kiss them. Family members also wanted to take them home as keepsakes. They were a bit time consuming to make, but easy & really added to the look of the party. To sit out, I put together a 300 page photo album of Ella's 1st year from birth till now. Guests enjoyed flipping through & seeing how she has grown. I also got photo frames, with matting that we used as guest books for both birthday girls. I got them at Dollar Tree for a buck each.

The goodie bags for the kids I got from OT. They were pink & I put face stickers on the outside. I filled them with snack size bags of M&M's, a packet of hot chocolate, chocolate food stickers (found on eBay), brown & pastel decorated pencils (Dollar Tree) & Thanks for coming note. For the adults at the party, I had a basket of full size chocolate bars I gave out before they left. The party started at 3pm and till 6, was exclusively kids party. I had a tub full of 200ml chocolate milks. We had sodas for adults. We had kid snacks on a kid size table & they (15 kids from 1-16) ran wild in our yard.

For the craft I got foam door hangers & stickers, at Dollar Tree that they had a good time making. Even the 16 yr old got into making them. The highlight of the party was the chocolate fountain. You can not have a chocolate party without it!!! Both kids and adults were crazy about it. We picked it up at Costco for about $50. We put it up high so little fingers couldn't get in. We filled it with Bernard Callebaut chocolate which is my favorite (not cheep but unbelievably good), & it was my birthday too. It was on a round table with fruit around it. Our valley had strawberries in season, so I filled a basket full, which was really pretty. We had bowls & platters of other cut up fruit too. I made a few kabobs to get people going. Make sure you have lots of skewers & tooth picks handy. I made a point of letting everyone know that there were no fingers allowed in the fountain. I also put out Oreo cookies, marshmallows & pretzels. Another table had chocolate deserts.

Family offered to help make deserts so I accepted. We had truffle brownies, chocolate macaroons, Chocolate silk tart, cheese eyed Susan's, jumbo chocolate chips cookies, chocolate roll, and others (so good)! To add interest to this buffet table, I scattered Heresy's kisses all around the table. On another table we had trays of appys that got switched out, & taken around to guests all day. We had meat & cheese trays as well, as fresh homemade buns. Some of our finger foods were asparagus pin wheels, pesto rollups, California rolls, spring rolls, and all kinds of other stuff. For the birthday cake, I made a large chocolate sheet cake & decorated it to match the Ella Bella Bar. It had brown & pink icing. I got the picture of Ella's head enlarged & laminated to put in the middle of the cake. I know you can get edible transfers, but I wanted to keep this for her box of memories, since it ended up being life size. It was simple to make & looked awesome! Between 6&8 the kids all started to be put to bed or taken off to sitters or grandparents.

After the kids were all asleep (which didn't take long since they were all exhausted from the fun) we stated serving chocolate martinis. I found lots of different recipes on-line, but I will share with you the best one. It's the Godivia Chocolate Martini. Shake with ice 1 ½ shots (ounce) Godivia dark chocolate liqueur, 1 ½ shots crème de cacao, ½ shot vanilla vodka, 2 ½ shots half & half. Shake well. Strain & serve. This drink is to die for! Since I very much enjoy being a hostess, I had a great time taking drinks around to everyone all evening. It was a great way to see everyone there & chat. I also made sure I took food around too, to help metabolize the liquor. We had & recommend having, a designated driver to help those who over do it get home. Calling a cab works too. We didn't have any problems though. We are all responsible parents now (too tired to drink too much or be up too late).

For our ice breaker we had a dark chocolate tasting. We bought Dark chocolate at a specialty food shop and cut it into small pieces. We put them out on small silver trays. On little cards to go with the chocolate, I wrote numbers on the outside & particulars about the chocolate on the inside. We had 6 different varieties of chocolate which I wrote the brand of, cocoa content, & country manufactured in, on the card. It was a good way to get people talking; picking their favorites & trying to guess where they were from. My favorite was the Belgian. I had also wanted to do a chocolate quiz but didn't get it together. I do quizzes up for a lot of our parties, and they are a great way to get people socializing, so you may want to try & make one up yourself.  I hope you find something in all this, you can use for your own chocolate party. It was a lot of work to organize, but tons of fun too. Take any help offered & start planning at least a month ahead. Have a sweet & delicious birthday!

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