Yesterday I officially released "Above and Beyond" book number 7 of the Cheer Chick Charlie series.
The release of this book took a little longer than normal. A combination of personal challenges and a change in business direction had me fall behind.
So as we neared release day, I decided it needed to be celebrated.
When I launched the series back in 2012 the official launch party included the people who had been involved in getting my business off the ground. It was a way to thank them for supporting my vision.
The party for book seven was different. This party was a way to thank the fans for embracing my vision.
It was impossible to create a party for all the Charlie fans in the world because there are many and they live a long way away.
But I could invite local kids.
So this party became about those children within a 5km radius of "Cheerville". The kids who consistently send in fan photos, who are always requesting "the next book", who have modelled my bows for me, who have participated in my focus group activities, whose fan photos have appeared in my marketing material and who have generally inspired me to keep going.
So that's a long way of saying the release party for book number seven was a kids party.
When I decided on the theme I wanted to make it different to what I'd done before. I wanted to make it less about Cheer Chick Charlie and more about the spirit of the story.
Cheer Chick Charlie: Above and Beyond is set on a camping trip in the Aussie bush. What a great party theme!
As luck would have it the book just happens to be an Aussie bush green. I actually didn't plan that when the colour charts were agreed on all those years ago. Complete fluke. So the colour scheme and theme were a perfect match.
The first thing I did was organise the cake. Cheer Coach Belinda is a cake maker extraordinaire so I enlisted her help in creating the centre piece. She modelled the cake on the cover of the book and the artwork on the motivational postcard. Perfect.
She was also kind enough to make the cupcake toppers for my little "White Wings" creations. Gum leaves and gum nuts.
Given she lives on the land she was able to bring me a bunch of wattle and gum leaves to help decorate the tables. You can't get more "Aussie bush" than that.
Some Aboriginal pieces, a bushman's hat, stock-whip and even a billy completed the decor.
The indigenous pieces are from the personal collection of a close friend and her husband who have travelled extensively through Australia visiting and supporting Indigenous communities. These are authentic pieces with their roots from all over this big brown land. A great way to acknowledge the history of the Australian people and the Aussie bush.
The colour scheme was all about the green so I organised balloons from The Party Hive in Canberra to closely match that specific pantone colour.
The cups and napkins were a different tone of green to bring in the blue-ish tones of gum trees. The straws and table top gave the wood vibe.
With every book you can buy the matching bow so lovely Rowena from Row's Bows was quick to purchase the ribbon she needed to complete the package.
The event was a morning tea so we had kids food that would work well at a campsite such as sandwiches, cake, cookies and flavoured milk. For the adults there was tea and coffee with damper style "pull-aparts" to snack on.
The kids went home with a balloon tied to a brown paper bag which housed a piece of cake. They were also able to purchase their copy of the book signed by the author on release day.
It was a great party theme and worked in so well with the very woody design of our home.
It was a fantastic book launch!
Any excuse for a party ....