Time to break my hiatus from blogging. Would you believe life has gotten busier with 4 kids?!? Who would've thought... I spend so many hours a day toting around a heavier-than-she-looks 5-month-old and anytime my arms are free I find myself frantically catching up on housework or half-asleep on the couch watching reruns of Duck Dynasty...
But now I'm ready for an update. And I'm going to rewind a couple of months back to Keziah's 7th birthday party. Every year the party theme is a subject of great debate. My daughter has some over-the-top ideas about what she would like and she also has a stubborn streak. But, if I'm strategic, I can convince her (every once in awhile) to go with one of my ideas. This year, in light of our upcoming trip to Disney, I convinced her to go with a Minnie Mouse theme, which turned out to be one of our simplest themes yet.
One nice thing about this theme is that you can find tons of Minnie Mouse birthday paraphernalia in all kinds of stores. We did buy some Minnie Mouse plates and balloons, but we also did a few crafty things to add our own personal touch.
We wanted all the party guests to have Minnie Mouse ears for the party so that was our first project. I traced circles on black cardstock (I think I used a plastic kids cup for this size circle) and drew a tab on one side before cutting it out. My dollar store glue gun came in very handy and these were done in no time. I just folded the tabs on the ears and glued them to the underside of the hair band. I used the ribbon to make small bows and glued them to the top of the headband.
Minnie Mouse ears complete!
I used more black and pink cardstock to create simple goody bags.
One thing that Keziah had her heart set on this year was having a pinata at her party. I really didn't want to buy one so I decided to see if we could create our own. It was actually pretty simple and I think it turned out really great!
Then I cut strips of cardboard to make my head 3-dimensional and started creating my shape with lots of painters tape.
Half-finished and ready to tape the other side on.
My 3D pinata shape is finished. I left a flap at the top where I could add the candy in later.
Keziah was pretty pleased with the Minnie Mouse shape and next it was time for the fun part - paper mache!
We made a mixture of some white glue and water to make a sort of runny paste and then dipped in our ripped up newspaper - tons of fun for the whole family :)
After we felt it was sufficiently covered in glue and paper, we left our soggy shape to dry and harden. If you plan to attempt this, give yourself a few days. It took a day or so to dry and then I did about 3 coats of black paint (crayola craft paint) to get good coverage - leaving it to dry in between coats.
When it was finished I packed that baby full of leftover Halloween candy. (Side note: I decided to divvy up the candy into snack-sized ziploc bags - one for each guest - to avoid a crazy free-for-all where some kids might end up with a ton of candy while others got none.)
Lastly I taped the top flap closed with packing tape and added a pink bow, which I made by adapting the instructions I found here.
And after we were finished, it was time to destroy our hard work! Erik drilled a couple of holes in the top and hung the pinata from our plum tree in the backyard. I wasn't sure how it would stand up to the baseball bat test - I didn't want it to come apart with the first hit but I also didn't want it to be an indestructible fortress either. In the end it worked out perfectly - each of the kids got a couple good whacks and then we let Keziah go to town on it until it broke open completely.
Overall, pinata-making was a pretty simple process and could work with all kinds of shapes - like a number for the birthday boy/girl's age or the first letter of their name... I think I may have inadvertently started a new birthday tradition... :)