We love parties. Let me rephrase that, the females in the house love parties. With Halloween approaching (just go back in time with me and pretend this was written a couple months ago!), the girls really wanted to host a party for all their foreign friends. I was feeling generous in spirit and quickly agreed to aid and assist the little party planners.The girls and I had a ball choosing activities and snacks. We went with a more generic Fall theme for multiple reasons, and it really turned out to be such a sweet party! Unfortunately, I didn’t think to pull out a camera and take pictures of the fabulous pumpkin spice cupcakes with marshmallow buttercream and a chocolate leaf (that melted in the humidity, but looked great in the fridge!) or the chocolate cupcakes with caramel frosting. The dirt cups with sour worms and frothing orange punch, the decorated table and house. All of it completely undocumented. Planning party games seems to have taken a back burner to all the fanciness of parties these days, but, over here, we don’t exactly have stores that can fulfill our beautiful party dreams, so we fall back on the activities. We sat around and talked about the things we miss in America during the fall season, and some of the things mentioned were the games at the Fall Festival our church always hosted. We decided it would be a great time to recreate a few of those fun games we love, and more than likely, introduce some of the kids who have grown up overseas to them as well. We printed and cut and laminated until we had the perfect number spaces for a cake walk. We set up the music and had the cakes all lined up. Then we worked some more on Fall themed Bingo cards, with little cups of candy for the markers. Jello was made in little cups, ready for slurping through a straw. Props were set out with a selfie pole, ready to indulge the generation who loves to take pictures of themselves. Apples were washed and water boiled and cooled for a bobbing for apples station. Ribbons were prepared for a three-legged race.
Sidenote here…ribbons cut tender skin, regardless of the width and softness. oops. And Bingo is still a favorite to kids all ages alike.
Not wanting to overload on sugar, or deplete the pocketbook further, we decided to do a point system for the winners. Every game had points available to earn. The winner got to choose one of the losers, ahem, non-winners, to receive a whipped creamed pie to the face.Had I known that all the kids would be clamoring to be the one who received the pie to the face, perhaps the award system could have been reworked. I also would have tripled the amount and sweetened the whipped cream when I made it. They may have been both a little disappointed and disgusted at the plain, unsweetened whipped cream. Regardless of the flavor and quantity, immeasurable amounts of fun was had and memories they will never forget were made.After the two winners who tied with the most points chose their people to pie, by random drawing due to the excited number of participants, everyone started re-using the whipped cream to cream all their friends.
In my living room.
Thankfulness for the tiled floors rose up in my chest and spilled over into the parts of my body that would be cleaning later in the day.The palpable joy felt in the room and squeals of delight, selfie pictures that will live on in infamy, and warm hearts after an afternoon spent with the friends and family God has blessed us with on this side of the world will always make me grateful when I think back on this little afternoon party. Sometimes it feels lonely over here, but when we take a step back, we can see that Father has given us a community of believers to work alongside that can be called on to make the hard days a little easier and to join in on the silliness of western traditions when our hearts need to feel a little bit of home.