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Jaylene requested a lego party for her tenth birthday. She’s never really had a big party before, so she was pretty excited about this one. This has been months in the making so I had time to collect a lot of ideas which I stored on my Pinterest Lego Board. In the end we kept it simple though and everything went smoothly.

Our colors were pink and grey, and our theme was lego. As guests came into the KTV room, they were greeted by a dessert table full of Jaylene’s favorite treats. There were strawberry doughnuts, strawberry oreos, pink macaroons, pink pocky sticks and lots of pink marshmellows. We also had pink frosted cupcakes on a cupcake holder made from paper plates and cups. Jaylene spent hours creating the pink and grey lego castles on display.

dessert table

Inside we had pink and grey buckets of lego waiting to be played with. The girls were ambitious and created a 14 level pyramid that miraculously stayed intact until the end of the party.


The kids played with legos and the adults chatted while everyone arrived. It was a new location and some people got lost. It was pouring rain outside and Ahji had to make a few rescue runs to collect some soggy guests. Luckily the food was delivered without a problem from one of Jaylene’s favorite restaurants in Tamshui – Kooks.

After munching on felafels, tortillas, sandwiches, salads and more, it was time for the games! As we had kids from the ages of almost two to twelve, we kept the games pretty simple. One was a relay race where they had to balance a bowl on their head, pick out five different colors of legos and then race back to dump it into their team’s bucket. At the end of the race I declared everyone a winner and gave them all a race car kit to assemble. It was so quiet while they were working on their cars.

Race Car Assembly

Then it was race time! Each kid got to race in an “official” race and then picked out a prize. Unofficial races continued on for the rest of the party.


Most of the prizes were small kits of vehicles but I managed to find a few princess themed ones. Of course Jayden picked out a princess one for his prize. I also had in some lego shaped notebooks and correction tape and even ear buds that looked like legos, so that the older kids could have something they’d enjoy at home. Races and prize picking continued for awhile and then it was pinata time!

Pinata Jaylene

The pinata was supposed to be a giant pink lego brick but I couldn’t get the connectors to look right. Oh well, a big pink frilly bag that you whack is just as fun! I didn’t make the strings long enough so poor Ahji got his hands hit more than he would have liked. He was a good sport about it all. I had punctured holes along the bottom of the bag to help it tear easily but the kids kept hitting the top. Originally I’d planned to do a pull string pinata but I was told that would eliminate all the fun. And they did have fun!

Pinata Open!

Then it was time for the cake.

Lego Cake Family

I had grand ideas of having a bakery make one of those famous lego looking cakes but decided that I didn’t want to deal with a disaster if they didn’t quite understand what I was asking for. So we kept it simple and got some loaf cakes with macaroons on top to look like legos. The bakery thought we were crazy for not wanting a more elaborate design, but Jaylene loved her pink lego cake.

Lego Cake Jaylene 1st slice

A party in Taiwan isn’t complete if there isn’t karaoke so that’s how the party ended.

karaoke Jaylene Amanada

Guests left with their goodies in favor bags that Jaylene made herself. It was a huge undertaking for her but she persevered and had enough for everyone.

Jayden Nicole lego bag

Jaylene was delighted with her party and is happily enjoying life as a ten-year old!

11-10-27 065 copy

Hope you enjoyed the weekend and whatever celebrations you may have celebrated! We enjoyed time with friends in the sunshine. And we munched on a lot of chocolate and candy! It may have helped my kids climb the walls…

jumping jayden

How was your weekend?

Here are the examples using my DIY flash bouncer. They were taken late at night, in a poorly lit room, in a bottom bunk. One used used my flash, the other used my diy bouncer. Can you see the difference?

Mr Boo

Mr Boo with Flash

Snuggle up

Lots of last minute changes this year but all’s well that ends well, and we ended with a very happy birthday boy. There was a dinosaur themed party at school…


Dinosaur photo book, dinosaur treats (toys and pencils) and dinosaur cupcakes. These were decorated by the birthday boy himself and his ever helpful older sister.

decorating cupcakes

These were super simple to make, cupcakes bought at 7-11, a nutella type spread for the icing, chocolate rocks to give a prehistoric feel, and a dinosaur topping. Made in minutes and very popular.

We had a quiet family celebration with just the four of us at an all you can eat BBQ restaurant. We finished the evening with Nian gao, which puffed up like magic.

Nian Gao

Then it was drenched in condensed milk, rolled in a peanut sugar powder and we added a candle for festivity.

Blowing out the candle

When I asked Jayden his favorite part of his birthday he said it was the “big train cake” that we had eaten at lunch. I had grabbed a cheap box cake from a cake cafe on our way to meet some friends for a casual lunch after their ballet class. Jayden was eyeballing the much more expensive teddy bear cakes but I managed to get him to agree with my choice by calling it a train cake. Apparently, unlike roses, cakes with a fun name are sweeter!

It’s hard to believe that my little guy is already four. What’s your favorite birthday memory?

Just spent all morning making mini photo collages so I can print photos for Jayden’s birthday album. This year it is a dinosaur minibook, and it’s really small, so the collages are on 4×6 photos.

Jayden collage 02

The kindergarten he goes to likes them to bring in a photo album. It helps me make sure at least one gets made a year! What special traditions do you have for birthdays?


Thankfully the weekends have been full of sunny days and the rain has kept to the weekdays, for the most part. To enjoy the weather, we’ve been going on sakura blossom hikes.


The last time we went up in the hills near our home and had a little picnic. We made sure to share with the locals.


Jaylene’s got a plan to buy dog biscuits and keep them in the car so we’ll be better prepared next time.


sparklers Jaylene oh

Jayden awe

Vday 173

Over the winter break Jaylene has been working on a mammoth-sized project. She’s kept every textbook since she started school, and in Taiwan, that’s a lot! They get multiple textbooks per subject per semester. She had the bright idea to keep them all, forever! After three years she’s run out of room in her bookshelf and has agreed to part with them, very reluctantly. In order to make the farewell easier to endure, I suggested she use them as collage fodder. So for the last three weeks she’s been cutting, and gluing and designing and inking and has created 31 collages from her grade one books. I guess grade two will have to wait until summer break! In the midst of all this creative chaos, I heard a “Mommy, look at me!” And this is what I saw:

Happy Valentine's Day

What a sweetie! How did you celebrate Valentine’s day?


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