Zinnia turns 5…. a spooky Halloween Celebration!

It seems like in the blink of an eye, the baby of the family is a big 5 year old. How did this tiny little ball of screaming cute turn into a big girl so fast?

Happy 5th birthday to our gorgeous Zinnia Delphine!

The world has never been the same since the second you came barreling into it, at full speed, screaming your lungs out. You dive into everything head first and definitely make sure we know your opinions on everything.

Zinnia has been at preschool this year and it means it’s the first year she has had a group of her own friends, with no connection to mum, dad or her siblings. This means it was definitely a great year to have a big party with all her friends.

The theme was up for debate for quite awhile. It was very nearly rainbows and unicorns (because she is a 5 year old girl 🙂 ). Then when we planned a trip to the USA for the end of October and we were going to be doing lots of Halloween activities, a Halloween themed party seemed appropriate. With a birthday mid-November it gave us plenty of opportunity to get decorations and costumes sorted and all the kids she had invited were still in the Halloween mood…..

Preparing the house to be spooky…..

Zinnia scored a pretty awesome Halloween costume from an awesome costume store in Boston, so what better thing to wear to your party? There was also of course birthday balloons and plenty of cobwebs throughout the house and scary spiders and scorpions.

Of course this was the perfect opportunity for more dry ice so help with a witches cauldron. The house was almost ready, and the scary, and very loud, pumpkin filled with lollies….

We had picked up plenty of Halloween bits and pieces before we headed off to the US, so there were party bags full of spooky toys and of course lollies. Zinnia had found plenty of places to put scary spiders and was trying out the witches fingers.

The front was decorated to make sure everyone knew something spooky was happening inside!

I do usually have a few cobwebs hanging around due to infrequent dusting, but we definitely added a new level of cobweb creepiness and far too many giant spiders….

Guests were greeted by the cauldron and ‘Witch Zinnia’. Anto had to re-use his awesome Boston Halloween costume and I decided to go be Hermione from Harry Potter, as my cow costume from Boston was way too hot for a 32 degree day 🙂 Astrid also used her Boston bat costume and Soren his Captain costume.

All the spooky food……

Halloween themed food was rather fun to make. We spent the day before the party carving out oranges to fill with chocolate cake and then bake; making a bread spider and many oreo bats. Astrid did and excellent job on the bats and I was pleased with my dough shaping for the spider.

There of course, had to be a cake! Zinnia went old-school again and wanted a cake from the original Women’s Weekly birthday cake book. We’d made the ‘rubber ducky’ the year before, for her 4th birthday. I have had countless of these cakes in my childhood and it’s fun going through the tattered old book to find inspiration. Being a Halloween theme, she was keen on ‘The Friendly Witch’. With a request to make her skin green (rather than the original blue). I think she looks much better with green witch-skin anyway!

It was party time and time to assemble the food. The orange jack-lantern’s had faces carved and were topped with cream. Anto skillfully carved a watermelon into a scary face and we’d spent the morning icing donut spiders, and tediously breaking up pretzels for the legs.

Astrid’s bats were super cute, and she’d even made mini-bats from mini oreos. We also had spooky jellies with embedded sour worms, and candy corn, we’d brought back from our US trip.

Granny had put together an amazing grazing platter for the many adults!

Captain Soren made sure noone stole the frankfurts or the fairy bread! The spider cob loaf was looking good with his French Onion dip filling….

Spooky (and messy) games….

Our Halloween themed games were lots of fun. First up was musical statues, with spooky dancing. I’m not sure the kids did super spooky dancing but there was a lot of shuffling on the spot to try and be moving the least for when the music stopped!

Next up was ‘toss the ring on the the witches hat! We started close and moved back further, each round. Some of the kids were not too bad at this, although the bigger kids definitely had an advantage!

Soren had spent the previous afternoon, painstakingly turning many while ping pong balls into eyeballs. They looked really good when finished. Our next two game needed plenty of fake eyeballs!

We’d cooked a giant bowl of spaghetti, added some pasta sauce and hidden several of the eyeballs in it. Two of them were marked with crosses. Each kid was blindfolded and then had to stick their hands into the spaghetti and pull out an eyeball. The winners were the 2 with the specially marked eyeballs.

The kids who did this loved it, but about a third of the kids were not going to stick their hands into goop! We had adults standing by to wash them off, and there was surprisingly little mess. Everyone got to keep their ‘eyeball’.

Finally, we did an ‘eyeball and spoon race’. We handicapped the older kids by making them use tiny spoons, just to give the preschoolers a fair chance. The kids loved it and kept wanting to do laps with their spoons and eyeballs well after the actual game had finished.

Time for cake…..

It was time to cut Mrs Friendly Witch. Zinnia had chosen a lemon cake with buttercream icing, and of course there were plenty of lolly decorations to make it extra tasty….

Zinnia was very excited to have all her friends, and their parents, sing her ‘happy birthday’. Then the candle was blown out with gusto…

There was more bubbling witches cauldron to help with the cake cutting…… This was a huge hit with all the kids (and adults)!

After 2 hours of fun and plenty of sugar, Zinnia bid farewell to her friends. They al declared it a ‘super fun party’.

Present time…

Apparently Zinnia had not forgotten how to open presents. She got so many amazing and thoughtful gifts. Most people knew she was into craft and colouring so there are now many more activities to keep her busy on non-preschool days.

While mum and dad cleaned up, Zinnia got stuck into the lego with Uncle Mikl.

The 5 balloons from Granny definitely brought a big grin. It won’t be long before she is as tall as the balloons…….

The first bit of lego was done, as was Zinnia after a very long day!

It was the day before her actual birthday, so we had to continue the ‘Festival of Zinnia’ the next day with more presents and more celebrations.

The adults used the very last bit of the dry ice, for our own fun. It makes a fun gin and tonic…. Sadly there was less left than we would have liked, but it did go down well after a long day.

….. and then she was 5!

Bright and early on the Monday morning and it was present time from Mum, Dad and Astrid and Soren.

The breakfast request was pancakes with berries and cream. Zinnia knows what she likes!

As a special birthday surprise, one of the chooks had laid another giant egg – a whopping 118g. The egg in Zinnia’s other hand is 80g, which is considered a jumbo egg. We occasionally get giant ones like this but Zinnia claimed it as her own and a present from the chickens.

The Festival of Zinnia continues….

After a day at preschool withcupcakes and more ‘happy birthday singing’ it was off to our dancing lesson and then a Chinese dinner with Grandparents and Uncle Mikl, and of course more presents, now it was her actual birthday.

It was apparently, an amazing ‘Festival of Zinnia’. She was thrilled to be finally five, and have so many people to celebrate with her….

Five years passes in a flash…..

It seems like just hte other day we welcomed this little bundle of trouble into the world. My goodness Astrid and Soren look tiny meeting their sister for the first time. Back then, I thought they were so grown up. Soren, had just turned 5 and Astrid was 7 and a half.

Zinnia was was so tiny then. My smallest baby, but it didn’t stay that way for long, she is rapidly catching at least Soren now…..

It might have taken us 3 weeks to name her, but she is definitely wears the name Zinnia well now….


Zinnia was smiling from a few days old and she never stopped. Such a happy baby, just not fond of sleeping!


A bundle of toddler cute she was. Fierce and determined even then!


She thought she was a big girl then, but she was still our baby Zinnia, and definitely boss of the house!


Four was an amazing year. Playschool and more independence and not a toddler any more. She still never stops smiling, but stomps her foot more now!

….. and now Five!

Zinnia Delphine, you are feisty, stubborn but oh so independent. Always wanting to be like your big brother and sister it’s scary what you think you can do, and what you don’t need Mum and Dad for. Sometimes you are a little bit too brave and independent but it’s amazing watching you grow up. You think you are boss of the household (and let’s face it, probably are).

You still love swimming, piano, riding, dancing, colouring, your pets and of course Bluey and your beloved ‘Teddy and Frog’. You love your family too, and we love your cuddles, grins, and endlessly amusing stories. Your imagination is as great as your stubborn streak!

You are embracing being a world-traveler, just like the big kids. You might not like sleeping planes but you do love exploring new places, and set your little legs on fire with all the walking you’ve been doing.

As we embark on our last few weeks of preschool before the adventure of full time ‘big school’ next year, we know you’ll take on that challenge head-on. You are always ready to do all the things the big kids do. You sometimes tell me you are a little bit nervous or self-conscious about something new and then just act like you’ve done it a hundred times before.

Enjoy being 5 and we can’t wait to see the adventures the next year bring ❤

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