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Gather inspiration for a casual outdoor gathering from one of our easy summer party ideas. From dinner on the deck to a festive taco buffet, your options are endless for a no-fuss summer party.

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Coconut Cream Island Punch, The Cutest 5-Ingredient Cocktail Ever!

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Sugar-Coated Ice Cream Social

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Pitcher Cocktail Recipes

Where there's a pitcher, there's a party. Whether you're brunching, dinner partying, or hosting a (very) happy hour, these fun pitcher cocktail recipes are sure to hit the spot. Find icy margaritas, fruity sangria cocktails, spiked punch, and more!

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Birthday Cupcakes for Boys

Give your sports star, animal lover, or charming little monster themed birthday cupcakes he'll remember. These creatively decorated birthday cupcakes are kid-size birthday treats designed to match the birthday boy's favorite things. Start with purchased cupcakes, or bake from scratch using our recipe suggestions.

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    • Baseball Cupcakes

      Baseball cupcakes will be a home run with the birthday boy, and they're so easy to make when you use doughnut holes as the form for the balls.

      Place green decorating frosting in a pastry bag fitted with a star tip or multiopening (grass) tip. Pipe frosting onto cupcakes to resemble grass.

      In a small microwave-safe bowl, microwave white candy coating disks on 100 percent power (high) for 1 minute. Stir; microwave for 30 to 60 seconds more or until melted, stirring once more.

      Using a fork, dip doughnut holes, one at a time, into melted candy coating, turning to coat completely. Place on waxed paper until set.

      Place red decorating frosting in a clean pastry bag fitted with a round tip. Pipe Xs onto doughnut holes to resemble the stitching on baseballs. Set a decorated doughnut hole on each cupcake, nestling it into the frosting grass.

    • Soccer Ball Cupcakes

      No need to bend it like Beckham. For these birthday cupcakes, a little dipping creates treats that will score with the birthday boy.

      Place green decorating frosting in a pastry bag fitted with a star tip or multiopening (grass) tip. Pipe frosting onto cupcakes to resemble grass.

      In a small microwave-safe bowl, microwave white candy coating disks on 100 percent power (high) for 1 minute. Stir; microwave for 30 to 60 seconds more or until melted, stirring once more.

      Using a fork, dip doughnut holes, one at a time, into melted candy coating, turning to coat completely. Place on waxed paper until set.

      Soften a log-shape chocolate caramel candy (such as a Tootsie Roll) in the microwave on 100 percent power (high) for 5 seconds. Use a rolling pin to flatten softened candy.

      Cut out small squares using aspic cutters; arrange squares on coated doughnut holes, using white frosting to secure. Place a decorated doughnut hole on each cupcake, nestling it into the frosting grass.

    • Monster Mania Birthday Cupcakes

      Skip scary and go for silly. A goofy monster fills a birthday party with giggles of delight. This one is easy to create using frosting, marshmallows, gumdrops, and fruit leather.

      Cut the rounded tops off cupcakes.

      Spread cut surfaces of cupcakes with black frosting. Place a large gumdrop half in the center on top of each cupcake bottom.

      Spread green frosting over cupcake tops. Place frosted tops over gumdrop halves on cupcakes, tipping each top back slightly to form a mouth.

      For each eye, use frosting to attach a small black candy and a gumdrop slice and to a marshmallow half. Arrange eye on rounded top of each cupcake.

      For each tongue, lay a fruit leather roll flat; fold and press together to make four layers. Use scissors to cut out a tongue shape. Insert tongue into mouth formed by each cupcake top and bottom, arranging as desired.

      Editor's Tip: To achieve a rich black color without using excessive black food coloring, stir 1 to 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder into the frosting before adding the food coloring.

    • Slam Dunk Basketball Cupcakes

      These little gems take the ball to the hole -- the doughnut hole that is. You'll need a referee to keep the birthday boy and his guests away from these tasty birthday cupcakes.

      Place green decorating frosting in a pastry bag fitted with a star tip or multiopening (grass) tip. Pipe frosting onto cupcakes to resemble grass.

      In a small microwave-safe bowl, microwave orange candy coating disks on 100 percent power (high) for 1 minute. Stir; microwave for 30 to 60 seconds more or until melted, stirring once more.

      Using a fork, dip doughnut holes, one at a time, into melted candy coating, turning to coat completely. Place on waxed paper until set.

      Use a tube of chocolate icing to pipe lines onto coated doughnut holes to resemble basketballs. Place a decorated doughnut hole on each cupcake, pressing into frosting grass.

    • Super Soccer Cupcakes

      This birthday treat is so easy! And your little soccer star will think you've scored big when you bring these cupcakes onto the playing field.

      Frost cupcakes with white decorating frosting, creating a smooth finish.

      Top the cupcakes with hexagonal miniature chocolate wafer cookies, such as 100-calorie-pack Oreo thin crisps.

      Use chocolate frosting to pipe lines between the cookies to resemble a soccer ball.

    • Star Power Birthday Mini Cakes

      The birthday boy will feel like the star of the show when he gets his own individual star cake. For a party activity, gather an assortment of candies and cake decorations, and let the guests create stars that are as unique as they are.

      Grease and flour miniature star-shape baking pans, available in the baking aisle at crafts stores.

      Prepare cake batter and preheat oven according to directions. Fill each pan about half full (about 1/3 cup batter).

      Bake for 14 to 16 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center of each comes out clean. Cool in pans for 10 minutes. Remove from pans and cool completely.

      Frost each star with white frosting.

      Using your child's favorite colors, decorate each star with rolled fruit leather, candy-coated milk chocolate pieces, red cinnamon candies, shoestring licorice, nonpareils, colored sugars, and other decorative elements.

      Editor's Tip: If you don't have star-shape pans, bake the cake in a greased and floured 15x10x1-inch baking pan for 16 to 18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Cool completely. Use a 3- to 4-inch star-shape cutter to cut shapes from the cake. Frost the tops only and decorate as desired. (The cakes' cut edges are very tender and may crumble if you attempt to frost.)

    • Root Beer Float Birthday Cupcakes

      Nothing is more fun than a root beer float on your birthday -- unless it's cupcakes with root beer flavor and style. Ice cream in the frosting gives these cupcakes extra appeal. Bake then decorate in a flash.

      Bake Root Beer Float Cupcakes or use purchased cupcakes.

      Make Float Frosting. Pipe or spread Float Frosting over cupcakes.

      Top each cupcake with a root beer-flavor hard candy. Cut drinking straw in half and insert a straw half in cupcake.

      Float Frosting: Allow 1/4 cup butter to stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Allow 3/4 cup vanilla ice cream to stand at room temperature for 10 minutes. In a large bowl beat butter on medium speed until fluffy. Beat in 1/2 cup of the ice cream and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Beat in 4 cups powdered sugar. If necessary, stir in additional ice cream, 1 tablespoon at a time, to make frosting piping or spreading consistency.

    • Funny-Faced Monster Birthday Cupcakes

      This googly-eyed monster keeps watch on a birthday party filled with friendly fun. Candies, coconut, and colorful frosting bring it to life.

      Cut the rounded tops off cupcakes.

      Spread cut surfaces of cupcakes with black frosting. Place a large gumdrop half in the center on top of each cupcake bottom.

      Spread orange frosting over cupcake tops. Place frosted tops over gumdrop halves on cupcakes, tipping each top back slightly to form a mouth.

      Sprinkle cupcakes with toasted coconut to make the monster's fur.

      For eyes, use frosting to attach a small piece of black candy to a slice of marshmallow; insert a small piece of black licorice into bottom of marshmallow slice. Arrange eyes on rounded top of each cupcake; press licorice pieces into cupcake.

      For teeth, press white small oval mints along edge of cupcakes in the mouth opening formed by the cut cupcake top and bottom.

      Use frosting to attach candy circus peanut pieces to the fronts of cupcakes for feet.

      Editor's Tip: To give your monsters a little fun inside, too, tint cupcake batter bright green or purple. Use about 1/4 teaspoon paste food coloring for every 2 cups of batter.

    • Ballpark Birthday Cupcakes

      Each of these individual cakes is a birthday home run. Design them to match the birthday boy's favorite team colors.

      Frost cupcakes with white frosting. While frosting is still moist, sprinkle colored sugar in your child's favorite team colors on some of the cupcakes

      Decorate with miniature pennants, which you can purchase at crafts stores or make from wooden picks and construction paper.

      For baseball cupcakes, place red frosting in a pastry bag fitted with a small round tip. Pipe red frosting on the white-frosted cupcakes to create stitching.

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      Next Slideshow Creative Birthday Cakes for Kids

      Creative Birthday Cakes for Kids

      The birthday cake is a great place to start for a party theme. Whether your child is an artist or a sailor ready for the seven seas, these birthday cake ideas will get the party started.
      Begin Slideshow »

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