I love a good party. From designing the invites to making games, themed food and quirky party bags, I always throw myself into it. For the last three years I’ve held my son’s birthday parties at home. His fifth and sixth birthday parties were perfect, the last one may well have put me off for life!
The Bug Party – Age 5
For his fifth birthday we hired BugsnStuff to come and entertain 12 teeny five year olds. Guy ran the party and he had them all entranced for over an hour. His knowledge was amazing and the kids loved it. They got to touch, feel and sometimes hold the creatures. There were spiders, bullfrogs, millipedes, salamanders, tortoises, chameleons, giant stick insects and snakes. One by one they came out of their boxes and the kids all loved it. He did let a couple of them climb the curtains. The stick insects that is, not the kids! But I did make sure they were all safely boxed away before he left! I’d recommend him to anyone for a party or event.
The Ninja Party – Age 6
This was my favourite party. Ben invited his friends to be trained in the way of the ninja. I think I got a bit carried away with this one.
After designing the invites I set about spray painting cardboard letters for decorations. I made ninja belts out of a £3 red blanket cut into strips. The children were all supplied with black t-shirts, ninja belts and a training card on arrival. They spotted the balloons hidden around the house. These were just helium balloons with eyes stuck on, really easy to do.
They had to complete a series of challenges to become a true ninja. Eating Eyeballs (small rice biscuits from the chinese supermarket dotted with food colouring pupils). Searching for treasures with chopsticks in the Chopstick Challenge. The Ninja Chop involved breaking breadsticks with their bare hands! They worked in teams to Wrap a Ninja and finally they had to avoid the lasers in the Laser Beam Corridor (crepe paper strips).
They all worked up an appetite with all the excitement. They tucked into Dragon Veg, Sushi Sandwiches and cakes. All made from jelly babies, swiss roll, madeira cake, jelly beans and strawberry laces.
My mother-in-law is the chief cake maker, I can’t claim credit for that!
Party bags consisted of chinese takeaway boxes, chopsticks filled with goodies.
As I said, I think this was my favourite one!
The Movie Party – Age 7 – AKA the one that tipped me over the edge.
A movie party, he said… my friends will love to just watch a film, he said… well it might have been ok had it not been the last day of term and the guest list mothballed into 17 kids in my house!
It all started well. There was a red carpet with Walk of Fame stars, I rearranged the living room as a cinema room, cushions and blankets everywhere, curtains closed. Food was simply hot dogs, chips and popcorn. The film chosen was How to Train your Dragon 2. I organised colouring sheets, word searches and a movie quiz incase they got a bit bored. What could possibly go wrong.
Once they’d finished their food someone must have flicked a switch as they all turned feral. Cushion throwing, popcorn everywhere, noise levels to scare the neighbours. They spilled into the garden, pulled everything out of the playhouse, tried sliding down the slide on scooters, lightsaber fights. I think maybe the start of the summer holidays went to their heads a little bit too much. It was only a matter of time before they tuned all Lord of the Flies and ate one of the group.
I was still proud of my efforts though, named water bottles, popcorn party bags with fake tissue paper popcorn, paparazzi Photo Booth. My mother-in-law supplied the movie themed Toothless cake and sheep-tossing cupcakes, which were demolished in seconds.
So after three years of home parties – I think I’m bowing out. I have loved being creative for my son’s parties, but time to think of other ways to do it I think!
Any one got any good suggestions for venues next year?