Tuesday, June 28, 2011

biking in the sun

We spent some time in the driveway biking and scootering a while back. I love having a gigantic driveway so the kids can play and stay off the street. In the winter I hate having a gigantic driveway because I hate shoveling the whole thing. But in the summer, it's great!

Could she get more pink?
riding the scooter a bit
a little break from biking

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Star Wars Birthday- the crafts and costumes

What is a party without costumes and crafts? To some people these are not essential party elements. To my kids they are a must.
I copied many online sources as well as some brilliantly creative real life friends and made light sabers from pool noodles. The real life friends suggested letting the kids embellish their own light saber. It was great and I never would have thought of it but that part was a huge hit!
cut noodle in 2
cover the bottom with duct tape
once around with the duct tape
then 2 more layers to make the base
then release the children to add buttons etc.
I had a drop cloth laying around so I cut it up to make easy no sew vests for the little jedi friends coming to the party. Here are some pictures in case you can't guess how they were made just by looking:
cut a rectangle
slit up the middle
small V at the neck
and one skinny piece for a belt

And since I was trapped at home with sick kids for the TWO WEEKS leading up to the party, I made a jedi pouch for each boy, while my sick kids were watching movies. Fabric scraps from dropcloth and old drapes. Twine from a coffee sack project I did a while ago.

Then I made a costume for the birthday boy and for me and Daddy from old drapes. I love that kind of sewing because you don't have to finish the seams. It is so much quicker that way!

Birthday boy as Luke
note the highly decorated lightsaber
Mommy Jedi
Daddy Jedi
More Jedi vests

Ok, I think that is every thing I can possibly say about the party!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Trooper Cake Pops

Since I don't really make anything fancy in terms of food, I have decided to channel that latent creative energy 3 times a year into the making of birthday cakepops. Really, they are the best treat to make for a classroom. We figured out the transport issue this time. But the teachers love them because the mess is very minimal. A few of R's classmates even demonstrated how they eat the cakepop in one bite. Nice, boys. Nice.

These particular cakepops were going to be death stars. Easy right? A ball with lines on it? I bought an edible marker for the task. I would have preferred grey candy melts but I couldn't find any so white seemed close enough. Except it wasn't. The marker didn't work. It doesn't play nice with candy melts.
And with icing the 'death star" attempts looked terrible. Yikes!Since we aldreay had a few dozen plain white cake pops awaiting decoration... we needed a plan B. What is white and roundish and relates to Star Wars? Storm Troopers. Ok, Clone Troopers if you are 7. My artistic Hubby took over for a bit...
Ok, the body kinda helps it look more like a storm trooper, sort of...A red Clone Trooper? Captain Rex (I think)? No it looks more like a bloody blob. Not the idea really... How about just plain black and white faces and cartoonish bodies? Much better! Yummy treats for the class, with left overs for the party and family party. And you can even tell what they are supposed to be! I hope.
The preferred method of transport is a board with holes drilled in it. Then spray painted black because I always have some spray paint lying around! Worked great and looked good too!

Another few lessons learned in our 3rd attempt at cakepops: make them small. Make sure they are really cold before dipping them. Thin the candy melts with shortening. Much less 'mistakes' this round. The kids were sad as they are the designated mistake eaters.

Cakepop info here. Thanks to Bakerella for the idea.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Star Wars Birthday- the food

I am not really a food person. If you know me you know that. I eat the same breakfast every day. I eat the same 2 meals every night shift I work. I hate putting energy into something that just gets gobbled up and is gone. But I do like to eat. I do like cake:) Every year my sis and bro-in-law put tons of energy into making a beautiful theme appropriate cake for my kids' birthdays. This time- R2D2! Delicious!
For R's party we stole some ideas off the internet and blatantly copied other people's genius and devotion to cool food ideas. I bought plates and napkins at the party store.
Dominos made lunch for everyone- despite what the sign says. Two points if you know that movie reference. Maybe 2 point off, it's kind of a stupid movie. The kids were a bit too busy playing to eat much pizza or much cake. (We are having pizza for lunch all week now.) The sprite + lime sherbet was cool and went over well. Unfortunately, Superstore makes white lime sherbet so it wasn't as yoda-y as I had hoped.
Jedi juice was really apple. They liked it too. The pretzel sabers were yummy and easy to make. I melted candy melts in a mug in the microwave. Then I watched TV and individually dipped each one. Took a few shows but it was easy.
There you go. Snacks, drinks and cake. That's everything right? Oh no. There were cake pops too! I will write about those next time. There were a few epic failures before we came up with cake pops that looked like something (sort of). Stay tuned!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Star Wars Birthday!

For some reason my children consider birthday's akin to Halloween. "What am I going to dress up as for my birthday mom?" Hmm. Not sure how they got this idea, but the theme parties continue around here. This time my big R turned 7!
This was the invite backdrop.
The party details were written on top in a free star wars font.
We just printed the pictures from home!

The idea of a Star Wars party was decided on and the imaginative play and dressing up began almost immediately. Quite conveniently we did Star Wars for Halloween last year. This Vader costume was hanging around since then. He chose to be a Jedi for the actual party. Little princess Leia is in a pillowcase and my belt!
My friend also did Star Wars last Halloween and lent us a genuine Leia costume so my daughter didn't have to wear a pillowcase to the actual party! Blaster from the dollar store.

Birthday boy wanted to be Luke. I got him a blue pool noodle and made a costume from old drapes left over from our apartment when he was first born.
We invited all the boys from R's class and some from last years class. 12 including the birthday boy. Wow. 12 is a lot of boys!!!
After getting Jedi vests and decorating lightsabers we tried them out a bit in the back yard.
Gotta have a balloon popping game. They loved it. It took 2 hours to blow up the balloons and 2 minutes for these dudes to destroy them.
Then we had a scavenger hunt for Star Wars figurines attached to clues that Yoda left us...
And we did attack Vader. Let's just say the spoils of this particular battle were sweet.

Check back later for a post about the food and projects for this party:)

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Bowling Birthday

My clever sis and mom decided to celebrate my birthday by going bowling as a family!
the teams
I wasn't sure how it was going to be- but I loved it! I would definitely take the family back again. The kids had so much fun bowling for real- as opposed to the Wii. K actually beat the other 2 kids (and his dad)!

I think I got the best score of everyone, that makes it fun too. They probably let me win because it was my birthday!
And in my opinion every party should include ice cream cake, YUM!
K picked what to have written on the cake. Isn't he the cutest ever!