Sunday, April 15, 2012

Birthday Bash!

   This year to celebrate our little Monkey turning 3, we decided to have a family party at our home.  When I asked what type of party she wanted, Monkey kept insisting on a Toy Story theme, so that's what we went with.  From the cake to the decor, it was Toy Story all the way, and I want to share all the fun ins and outs with you.

Let's start with the games, shall we?

First we had a Make-Your-Own Potato Head station.  I used adhesive craft foam (found at Michael's) to cut out various bodies, eyes, mouths, noses, ears and hats.  The kids seemed to enjoy this station the best.

Next up was a Paint-Your-Own Snake-in-the-Boot station.  The idea was to decorate these before using them in a Snake-in-my-Boot Toss, but we never got around to that part of it.  But, I only paid a dollar for these snake at the Dollar Tree, so it's all good.

I think my brother-in-law enjoyed this next game the most.  Each kid was given their own Mini-Marshmellow Blaster (found in the dollar section of Michael's), and was instructed to shoot the various villains from the three films.  Monkey ended up going on a rogue shooting spree after she had enough practice on her targets.

"Say hello to my little friend."

Last, but not least, here's an oldie, but a goodie.  Pin the tail on the donkey, but instead of some nameless donkey, it's that lovable horse, Bullseye.  I found the template and instructions for this game here.

 I knew there would only be four kids at the party, which meant I could squeeze more games in.  These were really good for keeping them all entertained, for the most part.  Plus they were fun for me to put together.

Next up: the food!

In addition to the normal spread of fruit & veggie trays, chips and dip, and hot dogs, I found these online and loved them!  They're supposed to look like Jesse's cowgirl hat, although I've been told that they look more like sombreros (Thanks, J!).

And of course, I had to try my hand at cake-decorating.  This was supposed to look like the bed in Andy's room, and considering that I threw it all together the morning of the party, I think it came pretty close to the mark

...unless you compare it with the elaborate sketch I had made before hand.

  To be fair, if I had used fondant it would have looked more like the sketch, but I don't like the taste of fondant so I try to steer clear of it.   Instead, I used a Buttercream icing with a Nutella Buttercream Filling.  Here is the recipe for the filling, or for the icing just omit the Nutella:

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup solid shortening
1 tsp vanilla
4 cups sifted powdered sugar
2 TBS milk
3/4 cup- 1 1/4 cup Nutella (It varies based on how chocolate-y you want it.)

In large bowl mix butter and shortening.  Add vanilla, combine.  Add sugar, one cup at a time.  Add milk, beat until combined.  Add Nutella.

 Now, on to the decorations!  J and I had fun staying up until midnight the night before putting all this up. (So if it's crooked, blame it on lack of sleep.)

We found the banner and streamers at Part City, but almost everything else came from Wal-Mart.  We even got one of those helium tanks to blow up our own balloons.  Oh, and those stickers of Woody and Buzz are re-stickable (is that a word?), so we just removed them and put them up in Monkey's room after the party.

I also made a Buzz Lightyear box and Etch-a-Sketch out of cardboard for the kids to take pictures in.
To infinity, and beyond!
Monkey was hiding.
My lovely little sister modeling the Etch-a-Sketch for me.
My favorite part of the decorations was actually this small detail in the "Happy Birthday" banner:

Doesn't it look like Rex is threatening you with a knife?  "Give me my presents, and nobody get hurt!" Or maybe it was just my midnight brain playing tricks on me.

Anyway, last but not least I wanted to share Monkey's outfit.  I found it on Etsy, at this cute little shop.  The boots, I found at the Disney outlet store.

Opening her Mrs. Potato Head from my dear friend, Tessua :-)

My pretty little cowgirl.
All-in-all it was a great day.  Monkey racked up on presents, so much so that her daddy and I are contemplating turning our guest room into a second bedroom just for her toys, but that feels a little too Dursley-esque.  I think a good time was had for all, and now I just have to come to terms with the fact that my little Monkey is three!!!

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