Woodland Creature’s Birthday Party
Aly informed me the other day that she wanted to be a party planner when she grew up, because I’m a party planner. Ha! While it’s technically true that I plan parties, I certainly wouldn’t take that title on myself. I like to take a bunch of ideas, and then whittle them down to what is reasonable, inexpensive, EASY, and fun.
This year Aly went with a Woodland Creatures birthday party theme. We didn’t really have the theme solidified until after the invitations, so I have no cute invitation idea to offer.
The star decoration of the party was the cupcake holder that Jake made.
It’s so creative and was a total hit.
Six year olds are always hungry, no matter what time of day (we had the party from 9:30-11:30), so I was sure to have lots of snacks on hand- many of them healthy and a few of them being treats.
Acorns: hershey kisses with a dab of chocolate iciing to connect a mini vanilla wafer.
Twigs: pretzel sticks
Pebbles: Chocolates (so, this is not like, yummy chocolate, just regular cheap chocolate. But the kids were so amazed that it didn’t really matter what it tasted like. Most of the kids had never seen these and were a little alarmed by them at first. :)).
Ants on a log: You can see them way in the background in the above picture; apparently I didn’t take a picture of those by themselves.
“Wild” Berries: blueberries, strawberries, blackberries and raspberries. Hands-down the most popular food of the party. So proud of those health-conscious 6 year olds!
Finally, the cupcakes. I made them this year, just from the box :). Vanilla cake with dyed red iciing and white chocolate chips (it’s supposed to look like a mushroom) and chocolate cake with chocolate chip iciing.
Thankfully the cupcake holder was also a big part of the decorations, so I totally saved a lot of money by not really having to buy many decorations.
I bought plates, a flag banner, and napkins from Birthday Direct. They have a super cute woodland creatures set of supplies. I just got my cups and tablecloths from the dollar store.
Cupcake decorations were tricky. I thought I could find some free printable, but we couldn’t find any we really liked. So, I bought these images from Pink Pueblo and then printed them out, stuck them onto thick scrapbook paper, and taped on a cake pop stick. I also used these images to make the food signs. I just imported each image into picmonkey and wrote on the bellies of the animals.
I also printed these cute little guys out and placed them on the tables for little decorations that the kids could also take home.
As kids were arriving, I had some coloring pages at each seat, with crayons, markers, and colored pencils laying around. It was good for the kids to have something to do while we waited for all of our friends to get there.
Painting a Birdhouse
I got these cute wooden birdhouses at Joanns for $1ish each, and the kids painted them. Yes, I know, I didnt really think how crazy this could have been beforehand, but the kids did awesome and there were no paint accidents! I had a gazillion plastic paint palettes (also $1 each from Joanns) from Aly’s art party last year, so we just used a few of them at each table.
Jake read a book or two to the kids while Grandma and I cleaned up the paint and the tables. We read The Nuts! to the kids and it’s a GREAT read aloud book. The kids got to join in the reading and it’s just a silly book that every parent and child can relate to :). Here’s a fun video in case you’re interested:
Once everything was clean, the kids got to eat their food. They spent about 15 minutes eating and talking.
Once the kids began to get finished eating, we had Aly start opening up her gifts. Last year we didn’t open the gifts at the party because it made Aly nervous. This year she really wanted to, I think because she knows how much the kids like to see their friend open their gift! While they were opening gifts, the adults cleaned up the remainder of the food trash and got ready for our last activity.
Making animal masks
We used these templates to make mask parts, but I ended up not having the right colors, so we went with more “imaginary” forest creatures. The foam masks I gave them had sticker backs, which was REALLY helpful in getting everything to stick well (also from Joanns). I gave them masks of various colors and shapes, along with pipe cleaners, glue, tape, foam pieces, gems, and cake pop sticks. They made some really cool masks!
Most of the kids just went outside and ran around for the last 20-30 minutes of the party. Other kids worked more on their masks, played with the woodland fairies sensory bowl I made, or looked at books in the little reading corner I made up (I always do this because some kids just get overwhelmed by noise and lots of stuff going on, and will totally regulate themselves if you just give them a place to do so. Reading corners with bean bags and interesting books is a great environment to just take a break for a few minutes).
There are a gazillion ideas that we didn’t use, and you can find some of those on my Woodland Creatures Birthday Party Pinterest board.