Make a birthday cake or other special day cake oh-so-adorable with candies! Cookbook author and stylist Libbie Summers shares 11 super-simple ways that cinnamon candies, jellybeans, maltballs, and other sweet favorites can make you look like a professional cake decorator in minutes.View Video
Make our DIY party cocktail -- that includes just a few tasty ingredients -- for an adults-only drink everyone can agree on. Cut-up star fruit provides a gorgeous base inside your drink pitcher.View Video
Give your child a birthday party to remember with a host of fun, energetic outdoor games. With a few household supplies and some ingenuity, we dreamed up an afternoon's worth of birthday party games that will have guests giggling until the party's end.
This party game is F-U-N! Engage kids with this challenging outdoor spelling game.
1. For a 72-piece game set, purchase a 4x8-foot sheet of Masonite from a home improvement store. At the store, have it cut into 8-inch squares.
2. Apply a letter to each square -- you'll repeat the alphabet twice except for letters Q and X.
To play, each player gets 10 letters. The first player spells a word on the ground. The next player must build off that word. The player with the fewest letters at the end wins!
This easy relay race can work at a birthday party of any size. We think it's most fun with four to eight players.
Save your bubble wrap and get hopping! Kids (and adults!) will love popping the bubbles and playing outside. Cut bubble wrap into nine rectangles. Use a permanent marker to give each a number from 1 to 9.
Put a birthday-worthy twist on tug-of-war by elevating the game.
Kids want to move! This sack race will burn pent-up party energy and get lots of laughs along the way.
Take aim and toss! This simple game starts with a repurposed cardboard box and gets kids of all ages into the action!
1. Cut a rectangular hole on both sides of a cardboard box. You want the hole large enough to comfortably fit your Frisbee.
2. Decorate the box with colorful tape, paper, or paint.
3. Grab a bunch of Frisbees, and off you go!
Combine playground tag and flag football in this easy birthday party game.
Supersize tic-tac-toe is perfect for an outdoor birthday party. Flying disks and a shower curtain transform into an easy party game.
A classic party game, this simple stacking set is perfect for older kids and small groups!
1. Cut 2x4 boards into a total of 54 pieces that are 10.5 inches long.
2. After all the pieces are cut, sand the edges of each until smooth.
3. Stack the blocks in alternating directions, and you're ready!
Be careful of tiny toes -- the tower will fall at the end of the game!
On a hot summer day, the coolest party games involve water. This wet-and-wild game gives kids a great excuse to get soaked.
Editor's Birthday Tip: Add a twist by blindfolding the contestants. Have kids wade through the pool using only their feet to discover the underwater treasures. Encourage the onlookers to shout out advice. Make sure to supervise so everyone stays safe.
Bugs and bark, pinecones and pebbles, dandelions and dried leaves -- kids adore the wonders found in the great outdoors. Set your child's birthday party outdoors, and organize a scavenger hunt.
Editor's Birthday Tip: Do some research before you make the list to make sure it's challenging yet achievable. Check out our free Nature Walk Guide below for tips and ideas.
Bring the carnival home! This classic game is perfect for small-space areas like a patio.
1. First, fill two empty bottles with colored sand, available at most crafts stores. Next, tie a ring with string long enough to reach the ground. Attach the other end of the string to a wooden dowel.
2. Lay out Hula-Hoops and place a bottle on its side in the center of each one.
3. The game is over when someone can stand the bottle up.
A rowdy game of rocket toss is easy to put together.
Don't throw away those empty bleach bottles -- transform them into an outdoor catching game!
1. Cut the end off a cleaned bleach bottle and remove the label.
2. Wrap the bottle with colorful tape, and you're ready to play catch!
Make a mazelike pathway through fallen leaves, and birthday party attendees can race through it. No leaves in sight? Use rope or grass clippings and sticks to form the maze.
Make a splash at your child's party with a fun water game.
Editor's Birthday Tip: Make this game even wilder. Arm a team with water balloons to use as obstacles and distractions while the other team tries to push its bucket across the finish line.
Little ones will enjoy this fun twist on badminton. Use homemade foam rackets to keep the colorful balloon off the ground.
1. Cover paint stirrers or rulers with tape.
2. Cut crafts foam into desired shapes -- ours are about 8 inches across.
3. Tape foam circles to handles.
4. Blow up a balloon and go!
Nature is calling for a game of tic-tac-toe.
Editor's Birthday Tip: Alert parents about your plans for an outdoor party and ask about their children's allergies. Make sure to have silk flowers on hand, just in case.
You may not have a built-in checkerboard in your backyard, but it's easy to set one up for a birthday party.
Editor's Birthday Tip: You can also use large square flooring tiles to make the board. Inexpensive tiles are available at home improvement stores.
Tag, you're it! Keep kids entertained with an evening game of flashlight tag.
1. At dusk, find a safe place for kids to run around.
2. Give each child a flashlight -- we added a ribbon neck tie to each for easy access.
3. Allow the kids to tag each other by turning their flashlights on and off.
On-the-go kids will love wheeling and squealing on this obstacle course.
Pumpkins aren't just for the porch! Make the most of the season's harvest with this easy outdoor game of tic-tac-toe.
1. Spread a layer of hay in a square.
2. Lay sticks to form the tic-tac-toe board.
3. Set out a total of 10 pumpkins: five white and five orange.
Who's the fastest of them all? Set up an outdoor course and find out! This game couldn't be easier -- simply set up numbered cones, and it's off to the races.
Got leftover jack-o-lanterns? Put them to good use with our pumpkin toss game!
1. Stack hay bales in a two-tier square.
2. Place pumpkins on each level. We used cardstock to create point labels for each.
3. Get a tennis ball and start tossing!
An old-fashioned favorite, pickup sticks gets a gigantic twist when the sticks are as big as the kids.
Editor's Birthday Tip: Add a challenge to the game by assigning each player a color. The first player to successfully remove all the sticks of the assigned color wins the game.
All it takes is a few dice to get the party started! You can make these outdoor dice with wood, but we chose small cardboard boxes -- perfect for younger children.
1. Paint one small cardboard box white and one black.
2. After the paint has dried, decorate each with the opposite color.