I am not telling you anything new when I say 2020 has been crazy - we all lived it so far, and there doesn’t seem to be an end in sight. Like everyone else, I have many personal stories about how the pandemic impacted me and my family. Today I want to tell you about Pepa’s fourth birthday. If you follow my blog, you know that Pepa and I are social creatures, and leaving our friends behind in Berlin was already tough, but we made a few new ones in the Black Forest before COVID-19 forced us to shelter in place and cut us off from these new friendships. Here we were in March, cut off from most interactions with people around us, just Pepa, Otis and I, with the occasional visit to my parents. I knew that this would not be resolved by the time Pepa’s birthday rolled around in May, so I got to planning for a socially distanced birthday party.
Together with mytoys.de and Pepa’s friends and family, I set to create a new kind of birthday party - one where we bring the party to each individual guest, not the other way around. But I am getting ahead of myself.
When I started planning, I knew I could not have a regular party with guests and cake and games and all the good stuff that makes a little girl’s birthday a special event in her young life, but like with everything in life, I had to adapt. Party at our place was out, many people together was out, so what could I do? I could bring the party to her friends. I spoke with all her friends’ parents, her grandparents, aunt and uncle, and we agreed that I am bringing the party to them, one by one.
I ordered small individual gifts at myToys, one for each family we would visit. I wrapped them in some cool reversible paper that came already pre-cut in the perfect size, no fiddling big rolls, and brought them to each family ahead of the big day. I also created individual cake-and-party-favour bags with a unicorn plate, a cupcake, a slinky, unicorn tattoos and some other goodies, and attached a balloon filled with helium to each one to make them easier to find later. Everything was unicorn-themed. On Pepa’s birthday, Pepa dressed up in her unicorn outfit, and we set out for the treasure hunt.
We followed a pre-drawn path with chalk and walked to her first friend’s house, and were greeted at the door from a safe distance. The friend and his family sang “Happy Birthday”, and instructed Pepa to search for a treasure in the front yard.
In turn, we gave each friend a party favour bag - or more precisely, let their friends hunt for it with a game of "hot/cold" (and made it easier with the aforementioned helium balloon). We repeated this at a few houses, with a lot of fun along the way.
We hopped and skipped to one house, including the grandparents house with music and laughter, and we soon had exhausted the friends list.
Pepa was delighted - she loved her presents, she loved having seen all her friends after almost two months of lockdown, and everyone had a good time. She was very happy about the Steiff unicorn, the Playmobil unicorn and a big and small unicorn from Schleich, but now it was time for the big one.
Pepa and I walked past some horse fields, and Pepa played with them, as she was of course a unicorn. We then went to the edge of the forest, and put on our explorer faces. We explored the forest, finding a few dead-end paths, but not giving up. Eventually, we came to a clearing and Pepa found her new bicycle - it was white and looked like a unicorn! She was over the moon. She rode it all the way back home, and could not stop talking about the excellent day she had had.
It was new for me and everyone else involved, but given the tight rules in this pandemic, this birthday party was a success that Pepa is still talking about today, six months later. From my side, I especially appreciated that the entire party and all presents cost me less than €270, including the cake, costume, party favors and presents. Thank you to all involved for making her day so special after two months of cabin fever, and thank you to MyToys for supporting us.
I am Andrea, or as my friends call me, Jinx. I am a foodie living in Berlin, eating my way through life. Here are my recipes, cooking events, dining experiences and more...