Saturday, February 19, 2011

Jaden's Birthday Party

For Jaden's fourth birthday, he requested a Toy Story party. I tried talking him into a more general, less commercial theme, like monsters or cowboys, but he didn't go for it, so Toy Story it was. We had his party at the house, and planned to have most of it take place in the backyard, which we are fortunate to be able to do in January in New Mexico! But just as his party was about to begin, the wind started picking up and we ended up having to move a lot of the activities (and what seemed like 20 kids) inside. It was crowded, but fun nonetheless!

The decorations are one of my favorite parts about planning a party. I loved being able to use lots of different colors with the Toy Story theme. I recruited the help of my mom, sister, and sister-in-law and we made the banners, party poms, cupcake toppers, and adorable alien favor bags! (And I promised that I would have my Cricut Machine up and running by the next party :).

Isn't the cake adorable! One of my student's moms made it and I thought she did an amazing job! Sam was in Florida the week before the party and went to Downtown Disney to get this set of Toy Story figures to use on the cake. Jaden was so excited!

While looking up ideas for a Toy Story party, I came across a great idea to serve food like the Toy Story restaurant, Pizza Planet. We had a variety of pizzas for the adults, and the kids got to make their own personal pizzas.

In the backyard we set up a little jumping balloon, a sand and water table, a playhouse, playdough, and a table with Toy Story games (Kerplunk and Buckaroo). The kids had a hard time trying to play with sand and playdough in 60 MPH winds; but the jumping balloon remained a hit! And we also played several rounds of musical chairs, which proved to be a hard lesson in losing for some little ones. We knew that everyone was a winner, but they weren't buying it. And I know what you're thinking -- as a preschool teacher, I should have known better and shouldn't have taken out any chairs so that everyone really was a "winner" each round; but in my recent studies, I've read that it is best for kids to learn at an early age about being good sports and that they can't always win; so call it what you will, but I like to think that I was helping them grow and develop :o). And once they got the hang of it, they were all smiles!

These mammas did not want to brave the windy weather!

I found the cutest Toy Story candy necklace kit that had a package for each child to make their own necklace. They were really focused and had so much fun making these!

Time for the Pinata! I think this pinata was holding at least ten bags of candy! It was so heavy. As soon as they strung the rope through and lifted it, the weight of the pinata made it break right through the rope. My dad had to do some reconstructing (which is why there is a towel taped across the top of it!).

Time to sing "Happy Birthday!"
I regret not getting a picture of Jaden with all of his little party guests while they were all still there, but I got a couple of really cute ones with the few kids we could round up at the cake.

Surprisingly Jaden wasn't asking me if he could open his presents the entire party, so we almost forgot about this part! He got so many thoughtful and wonderful gifts from so many thoughtful and wonderful family and friends! What a lucky, loved little boy!

Happy Birthday Sweet Jaden!

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