For Nate's fifth birthday party, I had a tough time figuring out what to do. Everyone does jumpy house parties (which I totally get because the kids love them and the places do the setup and clean-up). But we wanted to do something different.
At first, I toyed around with the idea of doing tennis lessons for a group of his friends. But the arrangements were difficult to make and I nixed it afer a smart colleague pointed out that the idea was a gamble (think: five-year old boys hitting each other on the head with racquets.)
So I asked him where he'd like to have his party and he said at home. Inspired by my friend Amy's old school field day games party at Railroad Park a few weeks ago, I set out to do the same thing.
My good friend Karin Fecteau, a local artist, designed the old-school cool invite:
Then, inspired by a neighbor's use of Etsy decorations for her daughter's party, I turned there for decorations. I like supporting small businesses, and having decorations that don't just come off the shelf of Party City. For $10, I ordered a PDF of carnival-themed decor from Dimple Prints. They emailed me the file and I printed it off and started cutting ad gluing. (They recommend that you use card stock, but I went the cheaper route, printing paper to poster board from The Dollar Store. Two for $1.)
I filled vases with candy from The Dollar Store too, and decorated the table with Dimple Prints cutouts. Did the same for the utensils that are wrapped up, below:
(That Elvis painting is always in our dining room. Joining it are a few of Nate's favorite things: Toy Story, Disney ears, and of course, goodie bags for his friends.)
Only five children came (that's an entirely different blog post about people not RSVP-ing). But it was the perfect number for egg toss, pin the tail on the donkey, water balloon fun, and of course, sack races:
Everyone was a winner. (But here's a tip: when awarding prizes, make sure that everyone gets the same thing.) Birthday boy had a great time. Here he is sporting his field day medal:
Pizza is a sure-fire hit for five-year-olds (and takes time out of food prep).
It was a great time. Plus the decorations did double duty for Dad's birthday yesterday, which we celebrated with a family dinner. Perhaps we'll just keep them up year-round?
Here's a video of the day, including an exclusive interview with a pretty cool group of five year olds. Now, next step: Megan's baby shower. (Which will be another Etsy decorated project!)
I love to plan a party. Would love to see pics of yours, especially if you used Etsy decoratios. Please share!
For a full set of photos, click on the photo stream to the right.