Grab your hula skirts, some coconuts & a flower for your hair! Today you are in for a real treat. Megan sent me her party for her 9 year old daughter and I love every detail. Aloha! Welcome to Ansley’s Luau!
Read more of the party details in Megan’s own words: “Ansley turned nine on Saturday and she wanted a Hawaiian Luau. There’s nothing I love more than planning a party, so I took off with that theme! Although I do really love sweet tea, Chick-Fil-A, and donuts perhaps just as much as party planning.
Ansley was very excited about her party and having her friends over for some fun. After a little persuading, I got John (and JonJon) to carry our dining room table out to the backyard for the party. A plastic foldy table with fold out chairs just didn’t fit with my vision of the luau. He is very sweet to oblige with my party madness details. Doesn’t it look cute though? I mean seriously the table really makes it, don’t you think? Each girl had her name on her fork, as well as a flower clip for her hair, and a fancy glass with a cute straw and paper umbrella. The flower cups on each plate are for the fruit that came with dinner.
As the girls arrived, Ansley greeted them with “Aloha!” and placed a lei around their neck. We kicked off the party with some nail painting and fun nail stickers, as well as some Polynesian sandals. They were really cute, and all the girls really liked that part! Several of them told me it was “very cool.” I’m happy to be cool with a bunch of nine(ish) year olds. I hope I still am when they are 13!
After all nails were sufficiently painted, we moved on to a hula hoop contest. Each girl got their own hula hoop and got to practice first, and then we had several contests to see who could hula the longest! They liked this so much we did this contest over and over. And over. Then the girls made some Hawaiian bracelets and/or anklets. There was nothing that was particularly Hawaiian about them, but sometimes it’s fun just to add Hawaiian before a word and make it so. I did think the beads were really pretty – like a dark wood color – so that made them rather islandy.
Then it was time to limbo! Ironically (or maybe not) the girls who were really good at hula hooping were also really good at the limbo! After all that hard work, it was time to eat! The girls were served rice, chicken and pineapple kebabs, fruit and frozen strawberry drinks. They downed those strawberry drinks like nobody’s business, and asked for more. But all I had was pina colada, so they all got to sample that as well. Each girl had an edible flower on her plate because Ansley thought it was the coolest thing ever when I told her that’s how they serve food in Hawaii. Some of the girls tried the flower, some of them didn’t want to. While they were eating, we had an exotic fruit taste testing. Each girl got 3 little cups with a different fruit in each one, and each cup was labeled one, two and three. Then they got a little form to fill out where they had to guess what the fruit was, rate it and make any comments about it they wanted to. These were quite funny! The fruits, in case you were curious, were starfruit, papaya and kiwi. Every girl wrote “This is gross!” for the papaya, but most of the girls loved the kiwi.
Cupcake time! I would have gone with a more tropical cupcake, but Ansley is not a fan of coconut flavored things. So we stuck with her favorite – chocolate and pink buttercream icing. Each girl went home with their hula hoop, lei, and flower for their hair. The tags say “MAHALO means “thank you” in Hawaiian. Mahalo for coming to my party! love, Ansley”
I had some coconuts that were on the table as decoration, but I thought that it would be fun to bust into one and let the girls try the coconut milk. When I brought this idea up to the girls, they were practically bouncing out of their seats they were so excited. Then I thought an even better idea would be to divide into teams and see who could crack their coconut first. When I said “go!” both teams ran to the driveway, flung their coconuts down and they completely busted. It was much easier than I thought it would be. But they had a blast, and then we let them each sample the milk inside. Which looked nothing like milk, I might add.
About a month before her party, I thought it would be a fun idea for the girls to bring a book to donate instead of a gift. Ansley has so many toys that she really doesn’t need any more. So we put that on the invitation, and each girl brought a favorite book. (A few girls also brought gifts, but that’s ok!) Since Ansley loves to read, I thought it would be a great thing to collect books to donate to a local ministry in need of them. I was very happy that Ansley quickly agreed to that, and thought it was a great idea. (She did say shortly afterwards “I’ll still get presents from you and Mimi and JonJon and Missy, right?”) But I was pleased that she was willing to forgo getting gifts of her own in order to give to others that needed them much more.
The only bummer in the whole party is that I had this whole pack of stuff to let the girls know why they brought a book and what we were going to do with them. They were going to decorate bookplates to put on the inside of the book they brought. But then we ran out of time and I didn’t get to do it. I’m bummed that I didn’t get to let the girls know why we were doing that and to allow them to feel the joy of giving to others.
Nevertheless, we collected a stack that we will take to a local ministry, maybe a women’s shelter or perhaps an elementary school (I’m still looking into it.) It was a very fun day, and Ansley felt very celebrated! We sure do love our sweet nine year old!”
What a beautiful party for a bunch of fun girls! You can follow Megan on her blog at Lifesong.