This weekend I had the chance to let the ol’ hair down and celebrate one of my sister in laws 50th birthday at a party and I think we did it in style. Even though I plan and organise events all the time, arranging one for a family member can be quite a challenge. It took two of us over three hours, to decide on the venue alone and then two other meetings to decide on theme, decorations, music and food.

After much deliberation a house party was decided on, the birthday girl insisted on keeping the cost low for everyone but in the end it probably worked out more expensive as we of course arranged too much food and drink. We did get a bit carried away, but sure you have to make sure you have enough for everyone and we had enough for breakfast and dinner the next day. (food I mean)

One benefit about a house party is there are usually no limits, you can create any type of event you want and be as creative as you want. We decided on ‘A Day at the Races’ as the theme and requested that people come dressed in glam style for ladies day, as a jockey or as a bookie. This created great entertainment on the night, we had a best dressed man and lady competition, best hat award and a best ‘tart’ award (some guests got very adventurous with their costumes and deserved an award …. you know who you are ….. Elaine 😉 )

As the weather was absolutely fantastic and warm the entire party took place in the back garden. The garden was awash with colourful balloons and banners. I created some colourful running horses banners where I cut a silhouette of a horse out of different colour craft papers and threaded them onto ribbons.

One of the sisters, Monica, created hundreds of flowers from pink, peach and white toilet paper and decorated the frame of a chair swing in the garden to create a beautiful ‘Winners Circle’ feature (the swing was removed). We hung a horse pinata from here and the poor horse was still getting a bashing into the early hours.

Another family member, Zoe, created a fantastic and delicious birthday cake. A chocolate sponge with chocolate butter cream and fresh strawberries decorated with pink and white icing, a large hat with feathers and a handbag ….. I can still taste it now 😛

To add to the decorations, I got two old political party corri-board road signs and created large fun caricatures with cut out areas for people to put their head through. One was a jockey sitting on a comic horse and the other was a best dressed lady and everyone had a great laugh posing for photographs and dancing in them. (I must add, I am not a member or have never been a member of a political party, I removed these corri-board signs, with permission, after the Lisbon treaty 😉 )

Anyway, I can’t fill you in on everything that happened that night, partly because of some slight memory loss and partly because what happened at that party will stay at that party 😉

Below are some photographs, excuse the quality as I was shaking with laughter most of the time.

Winner of the third race on 'It's too hot in here' ridden by Deirdre

Winner of the third race on ‘It’s too hot in here’ ridden by Deirdre

Best dressed contestant Geraldine

Best dressed contestant Geraldine

Dancing Duo

The Dancing Duo

Anita posing with her caricature signing board

Anita posing with her caricature signing board

Me and the birthday girl trying to look respectable

Trying to look respectable with the Birthday girl

The delicious birthday cake

The delicious birthday cake

Caricatures Guest Signing boards from only €65 from Caricatures by Carmel