Well, I had a ton of visions. Many of which would NOT work out due to time or expense. I guess I could have pulled it all together, but I didn't see the need to spend the money on something that probably was MORE so for looks than would be for comfort! The last thing our family would ever consider doing is camping, so I thought it would be so much fun for Lilah (especially) to have her and her guests sleep in a tent. I was fortunate enough to have a friend who's husband is a camping crazy, Ian and Allison Duncan. His camping equipment is kept immaculate and one of the tents he owns sleeps four people PERFECTLY!
Being we are NOT campers, we do NOT have sleeping bags. Well, the boys do, but that's because a camper gave Tyson a sleeping bag for his 5th birthday! Haha. Lilah could NOT sleep in a camouflage sleeping bag, so I went to K-Mart and got Liley a cute panda bear sleeping bag set. It came with a pillow too! The owl treasure chest is something Lilah had. I brought it to the basement to store Lilah's pajamas, camera, iPod, and a few other sleeping necessities.
I lined the inside of the tent with Lilah's duvet cover/comforter (off of her bed) and several over sized pillows from her window seat. How cute is it? It just so happens that I had four pillows. Of course, as you can see, I did add some neon balloons too, just for the effect.I made certain to have the BFF pillows showing. I think Cami was the first to arrive, so I was able to put the two pillow halves together to form the heart shape!
After organizing the inside of the tent, I decorated the exterior of the tent with white Christmas lights, balloons, and a strand of lights from Kirklands that read "Happy Birthday". Sadly, when I opened the brand new strand of "Happy Birthday" lights, the happy was "dead" or not lighting up. So I just used the "birthday" part and after the party I did wind up returning it since it didn't work from the get go.
When each of the girls arrived, they individually ooooh and aweeeed. I said, "You don't have to sleep in the tent, but I thought it would be fun!" All of them, especially the older two, said, "OH no!!! I want to sleep in there." I'll be honest...I sorta wanted to sleep in there too. No lie.
I removed all of the toys and extras that existed in that half of our basement and made enough room for the tent and all of the girls' belongings.
I even brought down one of Lilah's dolls. I dressed her in her pjs, gave her a sleep mask, and laid her in her own doll bed. She too had a sleeping bag if Lilah desired to bring her into the tent. Just another one of those "effects" that I felt was needed.
To make the sleeping arrangements feel realistic to camping, I ran our electric fireplace. So peaceful.The fireplace was NOT in the same half of the room as the tent, but it was in the half of the room where the girls hung out: playing Just Dance and a few other things.
The girls said that the tent was, for the most part, comfortable to sleep in the entire night. I think Lilah said it was cold or she was a little smooshed to the right of the tent, but that girl can sleep ANYWHERE/ANYTIME, so I think she just looked for something negative to say about it! Haha. I gave the girls glow sticks to use, before bed, and they brought them into the tent to help create some more glowing fun! I like to call this "Glam Camping" because clearly it's not quite "roughing it", like real camping. Hehe.