When McKinney mom Tori Sdao asked her daughter Elaina about a theme for her fourth birthday birthday party, she simply replied, “Wind.” Baffled by the abstract idea, Tori gave purpose to an old cotton candy machine (bought on a whim from Big Lots) and threw a cotton candy cloud-themed party.
After pinning dozens of ideas to a Pinterest board, Tori began crafting decorations almost four months in advance. She found cotton fiber (AKA fake snow) on sale after Christmas at Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Store and used needle and thread to shape it into clouds that would hang from the ceiling. She used pastel scrapbook paper from Hobby Lobby to make pinwheels and drew lightning bolts on plain gold party blowers. For a photo booth, she created a mini hot air balloon by tying an oversized balloon to a large basket and then bought crocheted pilot’s goggles as props.
When everything was in place and all the guests had RSVP’d to invitations that read, “Come float away with me,” partygoers arrived at the Sdao house to find a variety of sweet snacks waiting to be eaten. Tori had rolled marshmallows on a stick in different colored sugars and frosted cupcakes with marshmallow-flavored icing. To wash it all down, strawberry milk was served in plastic pint-sized containers.
Once the sugar turned to energy, the 4-year-olds danced on clouds while listening to a cloud-themed playlist that included songs like “Get Off of My Cloud” by the Rolling Stones and “Pocketful of Sunshine” by Natasha Bedingfield. Afterwards, they replaced paintbrushes with cotton balls and made a rainbow-themed craft. Kids also competed in cloud-blowing races where they lay on their bellies and used straws to blow cotton across the floor.
As the sun started to set behind the clouds, guests left with a special parting gift in hand. Inspired by the lyrics of a by a popular Barney song, “If All the Raindrops,” Tori placed lemon drops and gumdrops in a white paper bag along with a bar of Ivory soap and instructions on how to microwave it into a cloud of their own.