Glamping at Home: A Camping-themed Birthday Party

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I love me a good birthday party. I think that ever since I hyper-planned my wedding, I’ve realized that organizing a party is nearly as much fun as actually HAVING it. 

And so this year, when Lila ticked off the list of people that she wanted at her birthday party, I decided that the best way to keep things low-key and not-crowded (but still fun to plan!) was to split the list in half. We would have two parties.

It’s not as crazy as you would think. We would have a party for Lila’s school friends for one weekend, and another party for family and old-family-friends the other. This actually made things FAR more relaxing. The family/friends party could include all of the siblings, spouses, and other randos (kidding – we love you all) that come with a big brou-ha-ha. The school party would be smaller and fussier and just have Lila’s close girlfriends. 

I was loving this idea. 

The weather has been very mild this winter (as in, we have had one little dusting of snow – and that’s it), so the thought of camping in February came to mind when a friend was actually talking about going camping. In February!

Lila agreed that the theme was fabulous… and so I ran with it. 

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I made this “Welcome to the Glampsite” sign with my Silhouette Cameo and a wood plaque from Consumer Crafts. Mr. Suburble screwed it onto a spike and put it into a pot of primroses on the doorstep. I can’t include the file for the tent (so cute, though, right?), but I offer you a free cut file for the lettering right here

We’re going to take the sign with us during this year’s camping season. Double duty, yo! 

I didn’t go over-the-top with the decorations, but I did want a bit of festivity. There are two wooden deer standing guard over the fireplace. One of these days, I’m going to have to paint those suckers.

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Any chance I get to use these paper lanterns, I will. I want more for my patio. Pier 1 – you’d better be stocking these this summer. I’m counting on it!

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In the front hallway, I had the favours on display. Using metal camping cups (dirt cheap from Amazon), I added personalization using black permanent vinyl cut with the Cameo.

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hese are pretty big mugs. For this age, I think that they’d be perfect for holding snacks (or even morning cereal) around the campsite. They’re hand-washable (I washed each one in a big sink of soapy water, just to be sure that the vinyl would hold up), and nothing gave any indication that it would peel off of the mug.

That being said, I don’t know how well vinyl would hold up to the dishwasher. Because these are camping cups for the kids to take on dishwasher-less trips, I thought it would be fine. 

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I saw this sign on Pinterest. I couldn’t help myself. The Teddy Grahams were gobbled up very quickly, too. 

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And again – I have to stress – I wanted this party to be themed… but low-key. So, I let my crazy Party Mama take a seat while the girls decorated the cupcakes.

So simple and elegant, no?

No. They’re not.

But the girls loved them. Little fish, deer, and tree toppers were “strategically placed” around the cupcake scene. The rocks are made of chocolate (and taste a lot like M&Ms), and the icing colours are supposed to delineate the different parts of the forest.

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It looks like there’s a lot of quicksand in this forest. Ah well, the deer are doing the best they can.

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And they were quite the hit with the crowd. 

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Our camp craft was making Shrinky Dink keychains to attach to the kids’ backpacks. Holy campfires, this was a hit. Keychains were being clipped onto belts and dresses. There was even a second round of “Shrinky Dink making” later on in the evening. 

One of the little boys told his mom that night that the Shrinky Dinks were his favourite part.

I’m definitely bringing those out for future parties. They’re super easy, and the kids were VERY impressed.

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This cool guys was stuffed with all sorts of junk. 
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He didn’t last long.

Please excuse our backyard. It’s still February. Things are a bit cluttery and leafy back here. 

And at the end of the night, after burgers and hot dogs, and running around like crazy children in the backyard, we celebrated with campfire cones. 

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Campfire cones are sugar cones, stuffed with marshmallows, chocolate chips and bananas. You can also do strawberries, butterscotch chips, white chocolate, Nutella – whatever your heart desires.

Wrap ’em up with tin foil, pop them on a pan in a 400 degree oven for about 3-4 minutes, and then take them out when they’re melty and delicious.

You can also make these on the barbecue, but for winter birthday parties, the oven is perfectly fine. 

And that is our party! Not insanely fussy, but I think there were enough touches to make the party glamp-worthy!

Glamping season is coming up soon, too! (Well, May for us, but maybe earlier for other, braver folk) I’d love to hear if you have any other glamp-worthy party ideas. I get the feeling that this theme may be repeated in the future! 

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DIY Camping Party Ideas



  1. February 12, 2015

    This is too cute!! Such a fun party – I love all the details like the cups and the sign! Great job momma πŸ˜‰
    Kirsten recently posted…Giving the Gift of Quality TimeMy Profile

    • February 18, 2015

      Thanks so much, Kirsten! It was a hoot!

  2. February 12, 2015
    Holly @ The Inspired Home

    Shrinky dinks are the bomb – seriously. Every time I do this activity it is a major hit. Well worth the small fortune in the special paper. This party looks like a lot of fun!
    Holly @ The Inspired Home recently posted…10 Ideas for a Romantic Night In #forgetchocolateMy Profile

    • February 18, 2015

      I think I want to make Shrinky Dinks myself! The kids were so crazed about it – I wish I had more of that special paper!

  3. February 12, 2015
    Krista @ the happy housie

    So cute Tara, I love the cupcakes. Deer quicksand and all… What a great theme, and it looks like it was a blast for the kids. Getting to have a bday party outside in February is pretty amazing!
    Krista @ the happy housie recently posted…A Panelled Ceiling?? {What do you think of them?! I need your help!}My Profile

    • February 18, 2015

      It’s pretty crazy that we could swing having people outside in February! And yes, that deer quicksand was strong stuff. I definitely had to just “namaste” the perfectionist out of me. πŸ™‚

  4. February 13, 2015

    What a fun idea for a party! Looks like everyone had a great time!
    Danni@SiloHillFarm recently posted…WINE RACK LAMPMy Profile

    • February 18, 2015

      We had such a lovely time. Camping should be a year ’round thing. πŸ™‚

  5. February 13, 2015
    Virginia Fynes

    So much cuteness! Those metal cups are perfect. Except the fact you have no snow in your yard make me want to move in with you! Fun party, I hope the girls had lots of fun, and great memories!
    Virginia Fynes recently posted…Fun Baby Shower Game- Movie MatchupMy Profile

    • February 18, 2015

      I know… I’m sorry. We don’t have any snow.

      But… the mosquitos came out that day. What does THAT mean for our summer? Gah.

  6. February 16, 2015
    Kenz @ Interiors By Kenz

    This is the cutest party ever! And now I want me a campfire cone!
    Kenz @ Interiors By Kenz recently posted…How To Paint A Scalloped Wall BorderMy Profile

    • February 18, 2015

      Girl, I wish you were in my neighbourhood! You could drag your family over and have one with me ’round our propane “campfire”! πŸ™‚

  7. February 24, 2015

    Wow, Tara!! I LOVE this! What a great idea, girl!
    Hugs, Jamie
    Jamie recently posted…Ikea Rekarne Table MakeoverMy Profile

  8. June 20, 2015

    What a great party! The pictures are amazing. And all the thought that you put into carrying out the theme is AMAZING! Very inspiring. Yikes, think I should start planning my daughter’s bday party now!

  9. June 21, 2015
    maria magdalena

    So cute! Thank you for linking your recipe to Creative K Kid’s Tasty Tuesdays’ party. I have pinned your post to the Tasty Tuesdays Pinterest board

  10. June 23, 2015

    What an exciting party, you thought of everything. I loved the cupcakes. And of course those cones are just the best. Thanks for sharing all these cool ideas with the #HomeMattersParty
    Kathleen recently posted…Indoor Fairy GardenMy Profile


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