Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Top Ten Most Popular Party Themes

1. Sweet 16 Party Ideas - At the top of the heap, Sweet 16 remains THE most popular party theme visitors want to know more about at 

Whether it's parents looking to celebrate their daughter's coming of age, or teens themselves looking to plan their own once-in-a-liftime party, Sweet 16 attracts an audience spanning not one, but two generations. Leading search terms? "Sweet 16 party tips" and "Sweet 16 party invitations".

2. Scavenger Hunt Ideas - If it wasn't officially classified as a party activity, scavenger hunts might have topped the list of favorite party themes. As it stands, we've given over a seperate page dedicated to this wildly popular party game that encompasses birthday themes as well as holiday celebrations and activities year round. Most popular search: "Halloween scavenger hunts."

3. 80's Party Ideas - Leading the list of nostalgia themes (followed by 70's and the 50's), 80's party themes provide a great opportunity for going over the top with the era's dress code that ran the gamut of bad fashion ideas. Think big hair, huge shoulder pads and Miami Vice jackets. But having lived through the years of glitter rock and Raybans our editors continue to wonder.... Why God? Why?

4. Hawaiian Luau Party Ideas - The favorite party theme of pool lounge lizards and beach party goers, the Hawaiian theme regularly has both Americans and Australians saying Aloha. That our summer is their winter (and vice versa) is what makes Web search for Hawaiian theme party tips a year-round phenomenon.

5. 60th Birthday Party Ideas - Two words: Baby boomers.

6. Mexican Fiesta Party Ideas - Is it the Margaritas, the chimichangas, or the mariachi music? Yes. 

A perennial favorite, with an extra spike as Cinco de Mayo draws near...

7. Pirate Party Ideas - Two words: Johnny Depp, with evident spikes on or around Talk Like a Pirate Day

8. Graduation Party Ideas - This one makes the list solely for its huge popularity during April, May and June, with high school graduations leading the way followed by preschool, kindergarten and "graduation speech quotes".

9. Dora Explora Party Ideas - While Spiderman and Batman also rule,  the princess of educational television continues to reign over toddler parties.

10. 2-Year-Old Party Ideas - Also a Dora party cross-over, 2 is the age when kids can really rock the house, although specific searches (especially by new parents) tend toward how much partying a 2-year-old can actually stand. (Hint: after an hour or so, the party's over.)

More about popular party themes around the Web:

Monday, April 27, 2009

Top Ten Summer Party Cocktail Recipes

Here they are. Everything you need to know for celebrating summer. Soak up these classic cocktails that are perfect for awarm afternoon or cool summer evening out n the porch or in the backyard. Cheers!

10. Bahama Mama 
 1/2 ounce rum
 1/2 ounce coconut-flavored rum
 1/2 ounce grenadine syrup
 1 ounce orange juice
 1 ounce pineapple juice
 1 cup crushed ice 

Instructions: Blend all ingredients until slushy and pour into a hurricane glass. Garnish with orange slice.

9. Cosmopolitan
1 oz vodka
1/2 oz triple sec
1/2 oz Rose's lime juice
1/2 oz cranberry juice
Garnish: lime wedge

Instructions: Fill a shaker with ice and add vodka, triple sec, lime and cranberry juice and shake vigorously. Strain into a martini glass and garnish with a lime wedge.

8. Mai Tai
1 oz. dark rum
1 oz. light rum
1 oz. Triple Sec
1/2 oz. lime juice
1/2 oz. grenadine 
splash of sweet & sour mix
Garnish: pineapple, cherry

Instructions: Combine ingedients together in a shaker with ice. Serve on the rocks in an old fashion glass or high ball glass. Garnish with pineapple and top with cherry.

7. Margarita
1 ounce tequila 
1/2 ounce triple sec
1 ounce fresh squeezed lime juice  
Garnish: lime wedge

Instructions: Rub the edge of cocktail glass with a lime wedge and dip wet glass edge in salt. Fill a large cup with ice,  add remaining ingredients and shake well. Strain into cocktail glass. For a frozen margarita, place all drink ingredients and ice into a blender and process until smooth.

6. Pina Colada 
1 oz coconut cream
2 oz pineapple juice
1 1/2 oz white rum
Garnish: pineapple slice. maraschino cherry

Instructions: add all ingredients in a blender and process until smooth. Pour into a hurricane glass and garnish with pineapple slice and cherry. Serve with a straw.

5. Sex on the Beach 
1 1/2 oz. peach schnapps
1 1/2 oz. vodka
2 oz. cranberry Juice
2 oz. orange juice
2 oz. pineapple juice
Garnish: cherry

Instructions: Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a highball glass filled with ice. Garnish with a cherry.

4. Tequila Sunrise
2 oz tequila
4 oz orange juice
1 oz grenadine
Garnish: lime wedge

Instructions: Fill highball glass with ice and add tequila and orange juice. Tilt glass and quickly add a shot of grenadine so that is sinks to the bottom.  Garnish with a lime wedge and serve with straw. 

3. Singapore Sling 
1 1/2 ounce gin
1/2 ounce Cherry Herring
1/4 ounce Cointreau
1/4 ounce Benedictine
4 ounce pineapple juice
1/2 ounce lime juice
1/3 ounce grenadine
1 dash Angostura Bitters
Garnish: Cherry and slice of pineapple

Instructions: Fill cocktail shaker with ice, add all ingredients. Shake vigorously and strain into an ice filled Collins glass. Garnish with a cherry 

2. Mojito 
1 1/2 oz light rum
1 tabelspoon superfine sugar
Lime wedges
Club soda
Mint sprigs

Instructions: Muddle mint leaves, superfine sugar and lime in a mixing glass. Add mixture, along with and light rum and ice, in a cocktail shaker and shake. Strain into a tall glass and top with club soda. Garnish with a fresh mint sprig. 

1. Sangria
This is the classic recipe, but feel free to sweeten it up with chilled apples, cherries, peaches, watermelon or other favorite fruits:

1 lemon
1 lime
1 orange
1 1/2 cups rum
1/2 cup white sugar
1 bottle dry red wine
1 cup chilled orange juice

Instructions: Slice lemon, lime, orange and other fruits into thin slices and place in a large glass pitcher (or punch bowl). Add the rum and sugar and chill in refrigerator for at least 2 hours. Add the wine and orange juice and serve in red wine glasses or punch glasses.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Fun Pool Party Games & Activites

Besides the food and music, what's a pool party without the games? Here are some of our favorites for making a big splash with guests this summer. Be sure to have the camera ready!

Rubber Ducky Race

Provide a floating bathtub toy for each guest before they arrive to arrange this giggle-producing game for kids of all ages. It sounds simple as each player must push their duck to the other end of the pool. However, how they do it is up to you. For added difficulty, tell players they must only use head butts, their noses, their pinkies (or use your imagination). The first one to push their duck across the pool is declared the winner! 

Watermelon Slushy

Players push a watermelon from one end of the pool to the other without touching the bottom of the pool with their feet! Make it more fun by planning it as relay race for individuals or teams.  

Pool Party Treasure Hunt

Small plastic toys that are suitable for this game, just make sure they're sinkable to have players vie for a chance to find them at the bottom of the pool. The player with the most toys wins!

Cannonball Splash

Who can make the biggest splash?


Just like regular tug-o-war, only the rope is extended across the pool with teams on either side. The losing team is all wet as they get pulled into the pool by the opposing team!

Have fun ...

More about pool party games around the Web:

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

How to Plan a Toddler Party

New to toddler party planning? Although it's not rocket science, here are Top Ten tips and helpful advice from moms in the know:

1. Enlist the help of as many adults as possible.

2. Keep your sanity by observing the golden rule of invites: "kids age + 1" ( 4 guests for 3-year-olds, 5 guests for 4-year-olds, etc.).

 3. Get the birthday boy or girl involved from the very start and treat them to  a party theme (Dora, Backyardigans) that you know they will love. 

 4. Have plenty of coloring pages, crayons and sticker books on hand for activities.

 5. Remember that 3-year-olds have attention spans of 3-year-olds. Keep party games and activities short and sweet.

 6. Arrange for party games where everyone wins something or get ready for crying jags and, at worst, full blown meltdowns.

 7. Observe the Finger Foods: pizza, chicken fingers, cupcakes, gummy bears.

 8. Make pinatas and/or scavenger hunts a party ritual.

 9. Make guests feel special with a party favor, and lead them happily to the door.

10. Say Thank You for coming.

More about toddler party planning around the Web: