Tag Archives: stanley

12th April 2015

Stanley’s Bumble Bee 3rd Birthday Party in the UK

Stanley celebrated his third birthday yesterday – and it was the first birthday he’d ever celebrated in the UK with his family and friends. It was a such a treat to see the smile on his face as he danced,  laughed, and ate cake with his family surrounding him – and I thought you’d like to see what we got up to. I’ve shared all the details below of what I bought / what I booked, so scroll to the bottom of the photos and you will discover all the information.

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Bee hive cake and cupcakes designed and made by my talented mum. If you live in the Tunbridge wells area in Kent, she can make your cakes for you. Just contact me to get in touch with her.

My friend Leanne had a bumble bee party for her daughter Poppy in January. This was obviously Stanley’s inspiration when he decided he wanted a bumble bee party – so I took his request and ran with it, as it’s such a lovely theme (and I have a feeling it’s the last time he’ll choose something cute like this!) Leanne was kind enough to give me a lot of her leftover decorations, including a table cloth, banners, hats, and twirly decorations that hung from lights. I had a quick research and this is all available to buy on amazon.co.uk

Lunch boxes 
I found this idea on Pinterest and loved it. I made a little packed lunch in a yellow box for each child. Each box contained 2 x sandwiches in the shape of animal faces, a bag of popcorn, a bag of fruit, a bag of biscuits, and a fruit shooter drink. The kids got so excited finding their box and discovering what was inside – and it was the easiest way to prepare for a party. I also found that the children (or their parents!) put their rubbish back in their box so there wasn’t much tidying up to do at the end either! I bought the boxes on eBay.

We had children at the party between 8 years and 5 months – and I wanted to entertain everyone. But we had just flown back from Dubai, I was working, and looking after the children full time too (as my husband isn’t back in the UK yet), so I didn’t have time to think up party games nor the energy to become the party entertainer. So I asked my cousin who lives in Tunbridge Wells to recommend a party entertainer and she suggested Kelly the Clown.
Kelly was BRILLIANT! She came, set up, then mingled with the children so they felt comfortable. Then we all moved next door into the dining room and she kept the children laughing, smiling and dancing for a full hour. I knew she’d be good as she came highly recommended, but she was better than I even hoped – and every adult at the party commented on how good she was. It’s high energy and a bit nutty, but the children (right from babes in arms to 8 year olds) were transfixed throughout. I loved the fact that she kept singling Stanley out so he felt special – and he loved it so much we’ve had to play Kelly the Clown all day today in the dining room (me Kelly the Clown, Stanley, Wilfred and my sister the audience – yep, we know how to live on a Sunday!) You can find out more and book Kelly here.

Party bags
For the party bags, I ordered some popcorn-style boxes from eBay and filled them with a crazy straw (also eBay), few bags of haribo for the older children or fruit snacks for the babies, and box of raisins. I also ordered foam masks to hand out with the party bags – either bumble bee, ladybird or butterfly. The kids loved these and all left wearing their masks.

I will leave you with this video, which sums up how much the children loved Kelly the Clown. Happy birthday little man – I can’t believe you are three already!


9th February 2015

Today I realised he needs more than just me

zqdEJaUQsczOWx0VwH2MALk8lFgtm9oiNpEO6z_UTwwThis morning, we had a coffee morning at nursery. There was no coffee, so you can imagine my confusion, but I digress.

After I chatted to other mums, we sat down to listen to a presentation by a new school in Dubai. I didn’t concentrate fully, as we have already accepted a place at a different school for September – so as the headmaster chatted, I let my mind wander as I looked at the photos of smiling children in his presentation.

I imagined Stanley doing these things Playing in a  playground, talking to his teacher, going on trips to museums. I couldn’t wait to see how much he enjoyed it all.

But then it hit me right in the pit of my stomach.

I won’t see any of those things.

I will be at work or at home with his little brother. He will have to do all these things on his own, without me holding his hand, without me to comfort him when he’s feeling lost, without me to take pictures of him trying new sports or activities. I won’t get to hear him trying out words in his Arabic classes, I won’t get to see him rushing around the playground with a new group of friends, I won’t get to watch his face as he listens to a story with wide eyes, an open mouth, and crossed legs.

I could hear the headmaster’s voice, but my mind was elsewhere. Tears pricked my eyes  – as for the first time, I realised I had to let him experience it all on his own.

This is his journey, not mine.

He needs so much more than me. He needs a teacher with a welcoming hug when I drop him off. He needs a football coach to pick a position and teach him how to dribble a ball. He needs a school nurse to take his temperature when his nose starts to run. He needs a best friend to play chase with in the playground and sit next to in class. He needs his Daddy to read him a story when he gets home from work. He needs his brother to be the first to try out creations from his toy kitchen and have shouting matches with when they are taken out to tea. He needs his grandparents to give him love, hugs, and ‘don’t tell your mum’ treats when we’re back in the UK. He needs his cousins to grow up with, sitting next to at pantomimes and jumping through puddles on winter walks. He needs his aunties, his uncles, and his godparents to ruffle his hair and remark ‘wow, you’ve grown!’ before taking him on adventures or building train tracks on the living room floor.

We are all so important.


Not just me.

I don’t underestimate my role for a moment – and I am grateful for every moment, every bed time kiss, every time he leans his body into mine and lingers for a second for comfort. I know that in years to come, I will look back at these crazy days with a two-year-old and a one-year-old and miss them with an ache in my belly.

But today I realised he needs more than just me.

And I have until September to get my head around that. He’s my baby until then, at least.