A birthday party with a twist

It’s Tadpole’s 6th birthday next week, and we were looking for something a little different for his party. He’s an outdoorsy kind of kid, but with an autumn birthday, you can’t always guarantee the weather. So, what to do? Choose an indoor activity? Or choose something outdoorsy, where it doesn’t matter if you get wet?

Of course, we went for the latter.

One of the local attractions we love visiting is St. Mary’s Lighthouse It sits on a little island which you reach by a causeway that gets covered at high tide, and the rockpools are teeming with sea creatures. When I saw a flyer about parties on our last visit there, I knew I’d found the perfect party for Tadpole and immediately booked the closest date to his birthday that the tides would allow.

The kids all arrived and were taken up to climb the inside of the lighthouse – right to the very top. When they came back down, they all went outside with their guide, Sam, took them rock pooling (along with all the adults!). They caught several star fish, crabs and fish, and were daring enough to hold some of them!

After they’d returned their catches to the rock pools, they all came back inside for sea-themed party food:

  • Sand-wiches (cheese, ham, egg and tuna)
  • Scallops (marshmallows covered with white chocolate)
  • Shark fins (tortilla chips) and drift wood (carrot sticks) with dips
  • Jelly fish (lemon and lime jelly with little fish carved out of melon swimming in it)
  • Fish cakes (cupcakes decorated with fish, complete with little silver bubbles)
  • Sea bubbles (green grapes)
  • Rocky islands (chocolate crispy cakes)
  • Fish and chips (little crackers – salt and vinegar flavoured)
  • Pebbles (actual chocolate sweets shaped like pebbles)

The birthday cake looked like an island (it was a giant chocolate cupcake) and I covered it with chocolate pebbles and seashells to fit the theme.

As they ate, our specially compiled CD with sea-themed tunes played in the background (hell, any excuse to play Rock Lobster by The B52s, and Hoist the Jolly Roger by Adam and the Ants is good enough for me!).

After that, it was time to go home, and we packed the kids off with little goodie bags which had a badge reading “I climbed the Lighthouse on St Mary’s Island”, a novelty pencil sharpener shaped like a fish, and some bubbles, as well as a little bag of sweeties.

Tadpole had a wonderful time, and I think his friends did too (as well as the adults!). He went straight to sleep when he went to bed, completely exhausted from his birthday party activities. I’m willing to bet most of his friends did the same. They’l probably all be having dreams of being under the sea…


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