When 2nd grade best friends move to another city or state, it’s rough. Maybe you get to see each other on holidays or special weekends, but it’s never the same as seeing them everyday at school. So what happens when they move to another CONTINENT?
Kyla is one of Elise’s dearest friends and her mother, Rachel has done so much for me this year. She made it possible for Elise to stay in Girl Scouts and was willing to have her over once a week. She helped her with homework and almost always fed her dinner. When I found out that they were moving to England (Rachel’s country of origin) I don’t know who was more upset: me or the girls!
Every child moving away from their friends needs to have a going away party. And I just had to make sure that we gave her a proper send off. But going away parties are tricky; they’re part sadness, part celebration, part ending, and part beginning. Are gifts involved? So I couldn’t imagine a more perfect party than a photo party! Pics with all her best buds? What could be better?
I used the fact that both flags have the same colors and the starting point for the decoration. Red, white, and blue would be easy to come by right after Memorial Day and since her father is American, it only made sense to celebrate both sides of her lineage. I discovered that Kyla’s favorite cupcakes have the whipped icing, rather than traditional buttercream. So I came up with cupcake wrappers that were part “London Psychedelic” and toppers that were more “preppy, One-Direction”.
The Picadilly Punch was a nod to the circus that London is so famous for, and that was represented with the cotton candy at the bottom each glass. The guests marveled at the transformation when Sprite was added, and there was something extra special about a glass bottle with a stripped straw.
Beyond colors and patriotism, I wanted to tie in the notion that friendships can last forever, even if you’re an ocean apart. So the 8×10 subway art I created for the table was the perfect reminder to take comfort in the unseen friends that remain in your heart.
We needed an activity to tie everything together. As guests arrived, I had them sign and decorate a photo matte.
Many of the girls signed it more than once! The simplest part of this party was the photos, especially because of the props we used. Latex balloons, filled with regular oxygen, gave the girls endless fun and got them up and moving! The props brought out the silly fun that only 8-year-old girls understand, and lifted the mood of sadness into full-blown laughter. The just giggled and squealed, as friends should.