I don’t think I planned conception very well with my husband, because I have two kids whose September birthdays are only a week apart (something about New Year’s Eve, if memory serves!) and it makes for a rather frantic and expensive time when it comes to parties. As such, I have decided only to throw the full monty parties every three years now, and in between it can just be a cupcake, candle and a cuddle!

But as we are moving at the end of the year and the kids will have to say goodbye to all their little buddies, I felt it was a nice send-off to have their friends over for one last bash. Charlie’s request was for a Magician’s Party, although Skylanders did rate very highly on the list of themes for a long time and it took a lot to convince him otherwise (plus I didn’t think Esther would thank me for the hideous cake she’d have to make!).

I again had grand plans for my styling and dessert table, but as with Poppy’s Mermaid Party and the inclement weather, my best laid plans were scuppered by a rather nasty bout of gastro the day before. So I was rather a little behind schedule on the day and feeling rather frail and ordinary for it too. But the show must go on, and this is how it turned out.

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Thanks to Esther from Sugary Goodness for her amazing talents again in the creation of this wonderful Magician’s hat birthday cake and matching card cookies.

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I raided Spotlight for all manner of Magician inspired decorations, but could only come up with fluffy dice as everything is Halloween and Christmas at this time of year. But at least the bunting and a few other props from the discount shop which did the trick, even if I had to assemble the bunting myself which took a few hours! Can’t expect much more for $3.50 a packet.

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And this pathetic plate of cupcakes is why I will never put Esther out of business! Honestly, I am the worst baker on the planet and I can’t even blame these on the kids. Well, they did the sprinkles but the rest is my very sloppy handiwork! I seriously need lessons.

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I can take credit for the lollybags though which I thought was rather a cute idea. Just bought black lolly bags from the discount shop, a packet of playing cards and rolls of ribbon from Spotlight and made them up. I think that’s the kids’ favourite job, filling the lolly bags and eating them along the way.

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I’ve discovered this new brand of kids’ party stuff which is ridiculously cheap and they rival all the top party brands. My local discount shop at Warringah Mall stocks them all and it saved me a fortune. Even these paper straws.


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The entertainer for the day was The Magic Jester. Shayne is based in the Highlands but travels from Newcastle to Sydney to Wollongong and beyond for jobs. We had him entertain at our wedding 8 years ago, and the next day for the recovery party too. 
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He kept the kids enthralled at Charlie’s 4th birthday in Bowral and several other family events. He is a terrific bloke, with a great sense of humour and he completely entertains the kids for the whole show. He keeps them in check (even the challenging disruptive ones!) and in fits of laughter with plenty of snot and fart gags, and best of all plays to the adults as well. As a friend said, he’s rather like a Pixar movie, in that he appeals to kids and adults on different levels.

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And this is what was left of the delicious cake.

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And a lot of cleaning up. Thank goodness that’s me done until 2016!

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 All images by Melinda Hartwright.

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11 Responses to A Magic Party

  1. Sue says:

    What gorgeous photos of your beautiful children and your fantastic party.
    I especially loved your lolly bags. You are very clever Mel!

  2. Tracey says:

    Looks like a fun time was had by all! The decorations looked fantastic, only you Mel only you. Hope everyone is feeling better. Tracey

  3. single mum says:

    My brother and I are a day apart in November with 2 years in between. My dad and his brother are a day aprt with 3 years in between so you are not alone in your conception miscalculations!!!

  4. How very sweet…you need your own book Mel! Love all the details and that cake is too cute. I loved seeing your kids darling faces eating up all the fun, literally and figuratively:)

    And a VERY HAPPY BIRTHDAY CHARLIE!

  5. This looks wonderful Mel! The kids are so cute and looking like they are SO helpful there in the kitch;) We were all born in September and I recall my mom struggling to get all the birthdays celebrated .. not ever leaving anyone out. It’s exhausting! Enjoy your day!

  6. Anastasia says:

    It all looked so cute!!!
    I’m with you on the baking…..let’s just say it’s best we stick to our other creative talents!!
    Job done….tick!!

  7. Monica says:

    A magic party love it! Your talented friend Ester once again made a wonderful cake. I know the kids will have beautiful memories.

  8. Despite your illness it looks so lovely and the kids had a ball. Love the lolly bags and the cake.
    Carolyn

  9. You seriously know how to throw a good party. I LOVE those lolly bags and the cake. OMG THE CAKE 🙂 Well done huni xx

  10. Gail Storti says:

    That is definitely a “magical” party. I’m sure they a wonderful time and loads of fun! That cake is just too cute!

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