It’s been a couple of weeks since Lane’s 5th birthday celebration, and as excited as I have been to share allllll the deets of what was a super-fun party, I feel like we are just now coming up for air!
My girls L O V E Elena of Avalor (let’s be serious – who doesn’t?), and Lane has been planning to ring in the big 0-5 with this theme for months! Luckily for me, Elena’s world is filled with vibrant colors, Latin-inspired food, and fun, festive music, all of which provided endless inspiration for a fabulous fiesta! Here are some of my favorite details from what Lane told me was her “best birthday ever!”
The cake. Oh, the cake. Try as I may have to get her to choose a simpler cake, Lane spotted an Elena doll cake on Pinterest and had to have it. (What? Your 5 year old isn’t into Pinterest?) Now, I had made one other doll cake in my time (the Merida cake from last year’s fete), so I thought this would be fairly painless. Not this time. Turns out, the Elena doll is taller than the other princess dolls (&*%$!), so the pan I used didn’t create a deep enough cake to cover her up to her waist. I was short for time and ended up at the grocery store buying a pre-made cake, scraping off all the frosting and decorations, and sticking it to the bottom of my homemade cake, to add height. Once I did that, I re-frosted and attempted a fondant dress. It looks pretty good from the front, but I promise you, the back was
a mess unimpressive. I did my best, and Lane was delighted with it, as were her little party guests. Now I’m praying that Lauren doesn’t want a doll cake come May. I don’t know if I can handle the pressure!
The dessert table, to me, is always the star of the party (aside from the birthday girl, of course!), so I was sure to stock Lane’s with yummy Avalor-inspired sweets, such as candy scepters (these were a huge hit with the kids and are so easy to make – Lane and Lauren helped: marshmallows + candy melts + blue crystal sprinkles), cupcakes topped with Elena and Isabel cutouts, chocolate dipped pretzels, and candy that fit with the red, blue, and yellow motif. Avaloran chocolate was a must for Lane, but since we couldn’t figure out how to make or get the authentic stuff (Hello?! Can we get on board with an Elena of Avalor cookbook?!), we went with chocolate coins (U.S. currency only at Party City, no Avaloran money – don’t tell Lane). A hanging sombrero, yellow floral garland, and a DIY Feliz Cumpleaños banner completed the look.
For food and non-dessert snacks, I really wanted to stick with the Avaloran theme as closely as possible. Cue Charoca‘s Chili (an easy recipe I adapted from the South Beach diet years ago: ground turkey, black beans, corn, brown rice, kidney beans, diced tomatoes, onion, and chili mix), pan dulce (sweet bread – bakery bought, because I can’t do all the things), Jaquin snacks (Lane and I googled: jaquins are part macaw parrot and part jaguar, so they are omnivores… we went with fruit salad for this one, even though Lane said she saw a jaquin eating a chicken leg once), Arroz de la Abuela (Spanish rice), Avaloran Ambrosia, ensalada, and of course, chips and salsa, served in a sombrero!
For decor, I decided to incorporate fruit where I could. A few painted pineapples, lime wedges as stands for the food labels, and painted mini maracas on the tables added a festive touch. I also found these adorable scene setters (I don’t know how I lived without these for parties before I stumbled upon them last year) that feature a mariachi band and flamenco dancers! All that was missing was an Avaloran flag (I’m crazy enough that I actually asked the show’s creator via Twitter where I could find one of these, but his reply was that the only one was in their office!)
But all the food and decorations in the world couldn’t compete with a surprise visit from Elena! We had the Elena of Avalor soundtrack pumping, and the kids had an absolute blast dancing, chatting, and taking photos with Elena. Storytime, a piñata, and a coronation ceremony for Lane was the cherry on top for this birthday girl!
On their way out, Lane gave each of her friends a personalized bag filled with Elena-inspired goodies such as rings, pencils, mini maracas, and noisemakers.
This was one of my favorite parties yet, and of course, the most important thing is that Lane had an amazingly memorable birthday! Be sure to share and pin ideas if you’re inspired to plan your own Avaloran fiesta!