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Genie birthday parties
How to have a birthday party fit for the sultan's daughter

Your little Princess Jasmine won't believe her eyes when you unveil an exotic Arabian
Princess party or an Arabian Nights party. And you'll feel like a genie in a bottle when
you make her birthday wishes come true with an oasis of magic carpet rides, golden oil
lamps, sultry scarves, and a chic sultan's lounge for her harem of friends. Yes, this
party idea is pure genie-ous!

Are you ready for the magic carpet ride? Here's how to fill the room with incense and
finery from the Middle East with a kids Arabian Nights Party:

  • Pitch an easy Bedouin tent. Lounge your Arabian princesses under a bed canopy,
    or drape inexpensive netting around a hula hoop and suspend it from the ceiling.
  • Make pillow covers to transform cushions you already own. For an easy, no sew
    pillow wrap, lay the pillow on your fabric, then bring the opposite corners of
    fabric and knot two ends together and repeat with the other ends. Choose
    emerald, peacock, garnet and amethyst colors for the canopy and pillows.
  • Buy inexpensive mosquito netting and add your own layers to the canopy

  • Create a sultry Sultan's palace:
  • Make a centerpiece of ostrich feathers.
  • Set out jewel toned vases and vintage style bottles.
  • Hang behive paper lanterns in your party colors gold, blue and purple.
  • Find golden paper and plastic plates in golden tones of luxury.
  • Borrow brass candle sticks or spray paint Dollar store candlesticks in gold.

  • Transform stuff you have or thrift shop items into arabian pieces:
  • turn a coffee table or an ottoman with a tray into a low table for the feast.
  • a solid color gravy boat becomes a genie lamp for flowers (or spray paint a
    garage sale or thrift shop gravy boat with gold paint).
  • spray paint trays gold

  • Adorn the girls with glittery eyes and fluttery veils. The make-over begins with a
    genie up-do: wrap hair in a ponytail then pull a section of hair, twirl it around to
    cover the elastic, and fasten with hairpins. More genie things to try and do:
  • Craft an easy veil with a sequin headband, right, and organza or other sheer
    fabric. Just glue the fabric onto the head band.
  • The veil needs sultry eyes and face painting glitter transforms eyes with a
  • Apply a henna body art or tattoo. The Henna Floral tattoos, right, is easy to
    apply. The kids henna kit, also right, removes easily with vegetable oil. But globs
    of henna paste can be messy. If you don't want the mess or can't order, then
    find a nontoxic brown marker or eyeliner for an easier henna look. Accent your
    designs with flat-back gems. For a crazier look, try these tattoo pens.
  • Add a naval jewel if you dare! The Belly dance costume jewel accessory, left, has
    a cute display package making it ideal for favors, but you can use stick on gems
    (flat back rhinestones) to create the same effect less expensively.

  • Allow the birthday girl to be the Sultan's Daughter of swing! Arrange belly dancing
    lessons with a professional, or let Amazon be your genie with Belly Dancing 101,
    left. Practice belly dancing in 60 minutes of step-by-step instruction with Amira,
    left. No matter your age, size or shape, let Middle Eastern Dance change the
    way you see yourself. The Amira Belly Dance 101 DVD teaches the basic belly-
    dance moves so you can integrate them into combinations, safely and joyfully
    discovering your own dance. The girls will be thrilled to show off their own
    moves with finger cymbals, scarves, gypsy bangles. When you let loose, it will be
    a kids party they'll never forget.

  • More tips for an Arabian nights party:
  • Fill the air with magic. Burn incense with adult supervise (and never burn
    incense inside the tent). Another way to provide an air of Arabian culture
    is to provide infused water dipping bowls for fingers (choose rosewater if
    you have it or get some essential oils in Lavender, Jasmine or vanilla).
    Have the kids dip their fingers in the bowls before eating.
  • Rent a goat. It's not like you can rent a camel, but if you live in a rural area
    you might be able to borrow a or rent goat and tether somewhere where
    the kids can interact. It will help get an authentic Arabian nights
    experience and provide kids with extra enjoyment.

Foods for an Arabian Nights Party
Tea in the Sahara with the Sultan's Daughter shouldn't be too exotic, but if your little
Arabian princess and her friends have a sophisticated palette then go ahead and offer
store bought hummus and baba ganoush (a sweet eggplant dip), but don't expect
the girls to participate in the middle eastern sampling.

Most kids will enjoy a simple meal of kebabs (skewered meats and veggies on the
grill), but you might also try skewering up some tortellini with a light salad dressing. Be
sure also to offer pita bread, cucumbers, grapes and cheeses.

  • Dine at the Oasis. Eat on the floor with loads of pillows and an ottoman or coffee
    table. Serve meals on golden plates or use gold doilies on white or plain colored
    plates. Or dine on the table, but set each placesetting with "magic carpet"
    placemats. Affix tassels to the ends of ordinary placemats.

  • Ditch the forks. Eat with your fingers, but only with the right hand! (Anyone
    caught using their left hand must perform a dance for the others.)

  • Set up a Sultan of Sweets Table. Even if your Arabian Nights party has a
    traditional birthday cake, offer a sampling of middle eastern desserts. Baklava is
    a fluffy honey pastry puff dessert that most kids will at least try (watch the nut
    allergies!) You might also have kids try Halva (sesame seed candy) and Chai Tea.

Here are more ways to enhance the party with Arabian Nights theme foodss for kids

  • Genie juice in a bottle (try blue Gatorade, peel off the label and adorn with
    jewels to make a pretty genie bottle).

  • Candy kebabs. You'll rock the Casbah with the kids when you skewer up colorful
    marshmallows, gummy candies (Swedish Fish), licorice Allsorts, cut licorice,
    Lifesavers, gum drops and spice drops, fruit roll-ups, and cookies with hole. Roll
    some of the marshmallows in non-pareils or edible glitter. The finishing touch is a
    bit of curling ribbon at the end. As an activity, kids can make their own if you set
    an array of bowls. Set aside cellophane bags with gift tags, so the kids can take
    home their own creations. See our Chef's party ideas for candy Kabobs. And
    ETSY knows kids parties. It's the place for all things handmade, like the gold
    dusted genie lamp chocolates. Sweet! Make the kids do a little Jelly Belly

  • Minaret Merengue cookies. Merengues with candy pearl adornments become
    Serve minaret merengues (affix a cake decoration to the tops of store bought

  • Magic Carpet Fruit Rolls. Unwrap fruit rollups from the foil pouch and they become
    magic carpets! Add a little curling ribbon "tassels."

  • Create an oasis. Make blue raspberry gelatin for the oasis. Crush vanilla
    sandwich cookies in a baggie to make the sand, then prop plastic palm trees
    and mini camels surrounding your oasis.

Arabian Nights Party invitations
Searching for an Arabian Nights party invitation won't be easy, but your wish is our
command. Here invitations worthy of an Arabian Princess:

  • Craft a scroll invitation. For a birthday scroll invitation, start with two cardboard
    rolls from a paper towel, write your invitation message in the center, then glue
    the tube to each end of the paper. Cover the brown roll completely. To secure
    with glue, use binder clips while it's drying. Roll up with a fancy ribbon and hand
    deliver your invitation. For a fancier invitation, spray-paint a wooden dowel gold,
    dry, then glue an ornate fabric to it. Wrap the invitation around the dowel and
    secure with a fancy ribbon. Take inspiration from the Indian Wedding scrolls,
    pictured right, or make it easy on yourself and order.

  • Make it a charming invitation. The tiny magic lamp charm, pictured left, would
    make an ideal accent for a card layered in amethyst and gold. Or use the charm
    with tiny glass beads it to create "slave anklets." The birthday girl can
    "command" the girls wear them to the party. Do this by affixing a tiny invitation
    to the anklet with ribbon. The birthday girl can hand deliver the special gift.

  • Mail some magic. The 3D Lenticular postcard, left, brings Aladdin's magic lamp
    into action. Print invitation details on your computer onto full sheet laser labels
    and cut to the postcard size.

  • Genie bottle invitation: For a magical Arabian Nights party invitation, transform an
    ordinary bottle into a genie's bottle. Place four table spoons gold acrylic paint
    into an emptied and clean glass soda bottle, rotate every five minutes for an
    hour. Then allow to dry upside down. Then affix flat-back gems to the outside.
    Finally,  insert a paper scroll invitations inside and hand deliver.

  • Arabian princess party invitation wording ideas:
  • You've been summoned by the Sultan for Jade's eighth birthday!
  • Please arrange transport by camel, a magic carpet ride or a genie  on
    Saturday, August 22 at noon
  • Party Oasis: Sultan's Palace at 123 Main Street
  • RSVP: Harem leader Tiffany at 867-5309.

Magic Carpet Rides and Activities:

  • Jewel hunt. Kids parties need entertainment and there's no better classic than a
    treasure hunt activity. Hide small stones you paint or gems you find at the craft
    store before the party starts. Guests may notice them and when one does
    announce that forty thieves have hidden forty jewels and that a prize will be
    awarded to the one who finds the most: chocolate coins.

  • Cave of Wonders: Gather 15-25 small treasures, party favors, cookies, or candy
    and set them in tray in another room. Allow 30 seconds to review the items on
    the tray in the cave of wonders and then return to privately to the lounge to
    write what they saw. Younger girls can whisper to an adult who records their
    findings. The girl who remembers the most objects wins! Gather your Arabian
    princesses in a circle and award the winner a special prize or allow her to be first
    to select an object from the tray. The girl on her right selects the next prize and
    so on. Ensure two tiny treasures for each child and some leftovers.

  • Musical carpets: Seek leftover carpet squares from the carpet store and play
    musical chairs with the carpets. (Save them because they make wonderful seat
    cushions for picnics). In a pinch, you can use towels or the pillows you've crafted
    for the party. Have one less "carpet" than the number of players. Play music
    from the movie Aladdin stops everyone must grab a seat on the carpet.

  • Sultan says: This game plays like Simon says, but with a twist. Provide a carpet
    or towel for each girl at one end of the party area. Place scarves at the center of
    the room, and a magic lamp somewhere close. Begin with Sultan says "Rub the
    magic lamp." Girls rub. "Sultan says, get on your magic carpet." Girls find a magic
    carpet. "Sultan says dance on the magic carpet." Girls dance. "Pick a scarf and
    dance some more." Uh oh, Sultan didn't say get off your magic carpet." The last
    girl standing on the carpet wins.

  • Snake charmer's reward. Buy several rubber snakes and hide them in the grass,
    shrubs and low hanging branches. During the course of the party announce that
    while training, the royal snake charmer has lost a disobedient snake or two in
    the palace, and it's up to the kids to find them. Pair the kids, telling them that it's
    too dangerous to find the snakes alone as they are untamed. Use scarves to tie
    two kids loosely at the wrist. Then provide one kid with a bag to collect the
    snakes, the other with a dish washing glove. Both spy the snake, but they bag
    the snake together with their free hand only. The team with the most snakes, or
    a special snake you mark, wins. Kids learn cooperation and have fun during the
    process. Award the winners, but provide the other team a small treat, too.

More ways to set the genie scene
Here are more ways to make an Aladdin party happen at home:

  • Turn your backyard into an oasis. Create an oasis outside with a camping canopy.
    Drape sheets in emerald green, peacock blue, garnet red and amethyst shades
    of purple. Make a few cardboard camels in a caravan and stick them into the
    sandbox. Ideally, dromedary's (camels) should have one hump, and not two.

  • Decorate the family. Perhaps Dad won't mind dressing the part of a Sultan
    wearing a turban with plume, vest, and a waist sash. Otherwise, a red fez with
    a tassel will do. He'll make a fine Aladdin for the party.

Resources for an Arabian Princess:

Tell us about your Arabian Nights party and share party ideas with us on Twitter.
Arabian Princess party bedouin tent ideas
Arabian Princess party belly jewel idea - Genie theme party
Arabian Princess party henna tattoo idea
Arabian Princess party genie lamp charm
Arabian Princess party cobra snake charmer idea
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