Friday, April 15, 2011
His Knight Clothes Can Be His Birthday Suit (ah, kidspeak)
Time is passing and I’m beginning to think of Sasha’s 4th birthday (OMG, it’s so hard for me to think of him this old!). Yes, it’s a little over 2 months away, but knowing how he likes things that are a bit difficult for me, I thought I’d ask him about it. And lo and behold, he picks a theme that is not the easiest: Knights. Now, given his fascination with all things Arthurian lately, I’m pretty sure this will last into June. After all, he still likes pirates and all but the swords and arms of ye olde knights of the realm are far more fascinating and varied. After a quick search through the party supply catalogue, I noted I was a tad screwed. You’d think that as classic a little boy fascination as that is, there would be a TON of items available—rivaling cowboys and pirates. But no. Apparently knights aren’t cool right now. I have, though, come up with some doable ideas. I just need to *DO* them. I plan to use my non-existent cake decorating skills (I’m excellent at creating lumpy and uneven looking messes that taste delicious) to make an excellent birthday cake. One that will make my inability to make anything look pretty into a positive. I shall make the Sword in the Stone. I’ll make a horridly lumpy and uneven layer cake from a variety of pan shapes. Then I will crush vanilla and chocolate cookies into crumbs and mix them. Then I will coat the frosted cake in crumbs (so it looks like a giant rock) and put a small plastic sword in it. Ta-da! Next is the activities. I do plan on a piñata, but given that a dragon would run about $20-50 (yikes!) I will make my own. I’ve had a lot of experience with papier mache and have done dragons before so I know I’m capable. I will make it using garbage and junk mail and a bottle of laundry starch (it works better than flour in my opinion). I think it’ll be fun! Not to mention thrifty coming in at about $2 (not including the prizes inside). And I can make it the pull-apart kind so no need for a hitting stick (not the best plan for preschoolers). I also think the kids would enjoy a simple art project where they decorate their own shields. A bunch of stickers and crayons will be all that are needed in addition to the paperboard shield shapes. There is no “wrong” and the kids can do whatever they want. I did consider swords, but I already know some of the parents of kids we’d like to invite are anti-toy-weaponry. To the point their kids aren’t allowed to play with them at OTHER peoples’ homes. So we’ll stick with shields. And masks (I found a place that sold paper knight masks for under $2 for 6! We shall not be using party hats now). And since this year it’s supposed to be unseasonably cool and dry, an outdoor party would be great. I could reserve a pavilion at the park (in case of rain and to give us a grill and tables). That’d free up the burden on me to clean and would give the kids an automatic something to do—race around like maniacs. If anyone’s done a knight party and has ideas, feel free to share them!