Life is sooooooooooooo busy as a working momma of THREE kids... but, life is also full of so many "little" things...you know, those simple pleasures that really bring so much joy... I'm mostly thinking of the dopey things that my kids say and do that make me laugh... but also the little adventures we have or the day trips that we do... you think you will remember them all, but those memories really do fade over time. I am hoping to sit down once a month (ideally, once a week, but being that I hardly manage one decent shower a week, we'll aim for once a month for now! LOL) to detail those quotable quotes or beautiful little actions (or those not so much) as well as our family activities. I hope you enjoy!! :)

Monday, March 18, 2013

Birthday Party - Angry Birds Style! - Part I (Setup)

I guess now that I'm in my second year of blogging and it is no longer my New Year's Resolution, I shouldn't PANIC that it's been about six weeks since my last post... Right?  Right?!?  RIGHT??!?  I do have two posts currently floating around in my head, and that's without even thinking, it's just finding the time to get them from my head and onto the blog that's the trouble.  In any event, I am going to go out of chronological order in my postings... so, all of you OCD followers out there (which, is probably about 99.9% of you... funny how I seem to become besties with, heck, even married, type A'ers) will just have to take a deep breath, shake your head, and find that smile in your heart knowing that I just am who I am.  LOL.  I haven't even started and, yet, I digress...

So, just over a month ago, when driving Patrick home from one of his buddy's birthday parties, I figured I'd best determine what his plans were for his own impending birthday since, at that point, it was just 3 weeks away!  I asked him where he wanted to have his party--boy, was I surprised by his answer:  at HOME!  Now, if I think about it, I  shouldn't be TOO surprised.  He is a homebody, after all.  I wasn't quite sure, however, how I was going to break this news to John who, I knew, would be having nightmares each night for the next few weeks in anticipation of a dozen or so kids running amok in his house.  ;)  But, being that Patrick and John, if you think about it, are peas in a pod (besides the OBVIOUS physical resemblance!), John shouldn't be too surprised that Patrick would be happiest at home!  And, if I was really telling the truth (Ha, ha, ha! Now I'll see if John actually READS my blog by embedding this little nugget), I was a bit nervous about how to entertain a bunch of 7 and 8 year olds.  But then, it came to me...ZAAP!  We could do a Friday night pizza and movie night!  Suddenly, an idea was born... I even got John's stamp of approval!

Patrick was THRILLED with the idea and we set to work getting invitations ready.  I had to, of course, incorporate Angry Birds into the invites... I was slightly put-off that Rovio hasn't come up with an Angry Birds MOVIE yet... I mean, really?!  Then, I'd have the PERFECTLY complete theme.  Instead, we had to settle for Wreck-It Ralph! which was a new release and age-appropriate... totally random, yes, but, what are you going to do?  As it turned out, the kids didn't actually sit for the whole thing anyway.  So, we started with a little Angry Birds picture on the front of the invite, but, of course, I couldn't let it die there.  I then decided to use some of the sticker paper we'd gotten for a project somewhere along the way and actually do a WHOLE Angry Bird on the other side.  Then, once the invites were done (special note... last year I'd say we invited almost as many girls as we did boys... this year?  Not a ONE!  Seems like the gender line has been DRAWN... wonder at what age we'll be inviting them back, again... Anyone up for a wager?), I couldn't WAIT to get Patrick to bed so that the REAL planning could begin... ha, ha, ha... well, guess I'm not really kidding... in my defense, however, Patrick LOVES surprises, so that's my excuse.  That's right, that's my excuse... he loves surprises... it's his day... I must surprise him.  To Pinterest?  To Pinterest!

Pig Juice:
Drink at Your own Risk
TNT Box Center Piece I
Of course Pinterest didn't fail.  What I love most is that it simply started the juices flowing and then it all started to come together so seemlessly (well, except for that one link which had Angry Birds "freebies" to print which I SWEAR has killed our computer's productivity... you still reading this honey??!)!  http://pinterest.com/ladylennox10502/patrick/  Not sure if the link will work, but that's the board I pinned to so that I can properly credit everything and not try to pass all of the ideas off as my own.  Well, except for the pig juice.  Pig juice was my own idea.  Yes, you read that right... the pig juice!  Or, the centerpiece TNT boxes (and John said we had no use for all of these Angry Bird plush toys!)...my idea, too... that were actually the four new birds/pigs he was getting that, as luck would have it, were packaged by Amazon in the PERFECT sized boxes... best part?  Patrick didn't even know they were his presents and played with them for DAYS before hand!  

My favorite ideas from Pinterest were the bird feed (come on, what 8 year old boy isn't going to want to eat bird feed??!) and the Poppin' Mad Popcorn bags as they were the PERFECT snacks for the movie (word of warning, more of each probably ended up on the FLOOR than actually in anyone's bellies!).

A Collage of the Boys'
Angry Bird Art Work
      And, I even let the boys help decorate! ;)  Ryan kept insisting on doing the popcorn bags with me and I did let him stick on the label, but he was ITCHING with a marker which, being a bit OCD myself in this kind of situation, had me twitching.  But there is a method to all my madness AND, being that the kids were home for a snow day and I had a doctor appointment for Katy that I wasn't sure how I was going to get through with the boys with me, we dug out the Angry Birds coloring pages!!  I tasked each of my fellows with the job of "helping" me decorate.  I even then remembered this cool poster frame that has been under the same bed in probably all three of our last houses, being moved each time, that FINALLY had just the right use for it (see, John?  This is EXACTLY why we can't throw things away too soon!).

     The goody bags were a conglomeration of Pinterest suggestions.  The cups were at Target (or, if you want to spend more, Party City!).  I filled the bottoms with Easter grass (thanks, Patrick, for a March birthday!) and found a great multi-pack of Angry Bird goodies that mostly filled the cups.  Add in an Angry Bird pencil, stickers, and fruit snack, and we were almost done.  I did add one bit of the homemade goody Pinterest suggestions-- the coveted Golden Egg (yes, just like the Pig Juice, it's not REAL, but FUN, nevertheless, especially if your name is Patrick Lennox!).

     And, of course, there was the cake.  Any of you who know me well, know that one of my FAVORITE things to do is decorate cakes!!  I figured for this venue, I'd do a simple cake and then cupcakes.  I got the cupcake topper from the free download site.  Not sure if it was meant to be mounted on a toothpick, but that was the only way I figured I could use it without interfering with the frosting (umm, the best part of a cupcake... DUH!).  As for the cake, I would have LOVED to have done fondant, BUT it is outrageously expensive (one day when I have free time, I'm going to see if I can hunt down a recipe and attempt to make my own) and I was also looking to be kind of quick, anyway.  So, I googled cake images and had Patrick hunt around the house for all his little birds.  It was a simple frosting job.  Bird and pig placement, however, became much more technical as I (1) had to figure out a way to hold everything down without the structure falling if someone walked by too quickly and (2) had to battle OCD Patrick (OCD mom vs OCD Patrick) in proper figure placement.  Although the cake did begin to sag a bit, which wouldn't have happened with fondant, the cake was a HIT and most of the boys wanted a piece of it rather than a cupcake. :)

     I had a great time pulling this party together!  Of course, by far, the BEST part is that Patrick is SOOOOOO incredibly easy to please and gets so excited by the simple things in life.  Every time I added another element to the planning, his eyes would sparkle and he'd give me THAT grin!  And, when he came home from school (yes, early, because he THREW UP, a story for Part II... decided to break this one into two posts) and saw it all pulled together, he was THRILLED (well, as thrilled as someone who'd just thrown up in front of his classmates could be).  So, we conquered the SETUP of the at-home party... you'll have to stay tuned to see if we survived the execution (interesting word choice, no?)...

Kimberly, John, Two Boys & Our Little Rose

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