I've mentioned before here that London is my all-time favorite city in the whole world! It has a special place in my heart so when we were talking about watching the Olympic Opening Ceremonies, I thought it might be fun to have a little British-themed viewing party. We invited a few friends but kept the guest list small this time because we wanted everyone to fit into the living room to watch the Ceremonies on the TV! My plan had been to let the children run around the backyard but the day ended up being very cool and rainy--uncharacteristic for Colorado in July, but a perfect backdrop for a London party!
Prawn Cocktail flavor on such short notice!), berries in the colors of the Union Jack (inspired by this), and Jacob's Cream Crackers with a lovely sharp English cheddar. I tried to find some Wensleydale, but that was a bit too exotic for my grocery store (and hands up if you get the reference! :) And if I'd seen it sooner, I totally would have made this beautiful and appropriate Olympic Rings English Trifle!
For sweets, I wanted my favorite British cookie (ahem, biscuit) called HobNobs, but World Market was absolutely cleaned out. I went with Cadbury Digestives instead and they were delicious too! I rounded out the Cadbury offerings with Caramello bars and Cadbury Fingers in both dark and milk chocolates. I found a box of Kellogg's Team USA cereal (basically red, white and blue Froot Loops) and used it to make festive cereal bars a la Rice Krispies treats.
On Pinterest I found this cute idea for cupcakes with the Olympic Rings represented by M&Ms:
Italian Sodas. Not British, but international in the spirit of the Olympics, right? And more importantly, fun to make and consume, especially when you use red and blue stripey straws!
To decorate I pulled out all of my London guidebooks and childrens' books, my big Keep Calm and Carry On poster (purchased at the Cabinet War Rooms museum shop, just down the way from the Horse Guards Parade where the beach volleyball is currently being held), my beloved Cath Kidston London postcard and Union Jack pincushion, a red phone box tin, and the Monet print of Westminster Bridge that I bought way back when I was there on Study Abroad in 1998. I also printed out some cute London 2012 posters and put them in my IKEA Tolsby frames.
The rain put a definite crimp in my plans for outdoor activities for the kids. I bought materials for the children to make ribbon wands using a mashup of various Pinned ribbon wand tutorials. I had planned to do those toward the beginning of the evening so they could run around the backyard doing rhythmic gymnastics, but the rain kept us all inside. We did end up making the wands toward the end of the evening, so all was not lost. I also had paper, crayons and stripey straws for the kids to make their own flags.
In all we had such a fun evening! I thought the Ceremonies themselves were a bit uneven with portions that were charming and portions that left us scratching our heads. I'll never pass up an opportunity for a fun party (or to make a Pinboard!), especially one feting my favorite place on Earth. :)