Thinking of a birthday theme to beat the summer heat? Plan your event around everyone’s favorite frozen treat with a DIY Ice Cream Parlour. Scottsdale Moms blogger Stephanie Flies shares her recipe for hosting a refreshingly cool – and affordable – party.
Flies began dreaming about party themes months before her daughter’s first birthday which, naturally, led to the internet. “I knew I wanted to do something that was creative, fun, and somewhat inexpensive. You name a website, I went to it – no joke. When I finally came across the Ice Cream Parlour Party on Eat Drink Chic, I knew I had found my theme,” Flies says. The best thing about doing the Ice Cream Parlour theme? “You really don’t have to actually make anything unless you want to,” Flies says, “which, with a one-year old running around the house, is a huge blessing.”
For décor, let the sundae station be the centerpiece. With a fuchsia and turquoise color palette in mind, Flies worked on printable parlour-themed signs and graphics for all of her party goodies. Coordinating balloons and hanging pom-poms tie the look together.
In addition to your favorite ice cream flavors, consider offering low-calorie frozen yogurt, sugar-free ice cream, or a non-dairy alternative for guests with dietary restrictions. Toppings can run the gamut from good-for-you fruits to dark, decadent fudge. Flies suggests including all of your family’s favorites; hers included: sprinkles, maraschino cherries, chocolate chips, coconut, brownies, peanuts, gumballs, fruit, strawberry sauce, hot fudge, and caramel.
Looking for some money-saving advice? “Borrow, borrow, borrow,” Flies says. “You won’t believe how many of the things I borrowed from friends. For the things I did end up buying, I bought them at the Dollar Tree or Wal-mart. Both have a great selection of odds and ends for party planning.” Send your guests home with a sweet memory of your party: ice cream toppings to go. Flies made pretty jars of homemade strawberry sauce as party favors, the recipe follows.
Homemade Strawberry Ice Cream Topping
1 pint strawberries, cleaned and stemmed
⅓ cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
Instructions: 1. Cut about ⅓ of the strawberries in half. 2. In a saucepan over medium-high heat, combine strawberries, sugar and vanilla. 3. Cook, stirring occasionally, until sauce thickens, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat. 4. In a blender, puree about ⅓ of sauce, then mix back into remainder. Store in refrigerator.
Stephanie Flies is the co-founder of Scottsdale Moms Blog and part-time Conference & Events Director for Family Matters. She is mamma to Nora (July 2009) and wife of Alan. She loves shopping for great deals, wearing funky jewery and spending loads of time with friends. Steph gets a kick out of multitasking and loves nothing more than throwing a good party. You are always welcome to e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.