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Friday, March 19, 2010

The Home Brewed Birthday Party Scene

When I was a new mom, I used to go all out when it came to my children's birthday parties.  Organizing them was close to becoming a contest between me and some other moms I used to work with.  We'd fill each other in on who could come up with the most creative or innovative location for a party.  We would never hesitate to steal ideas from one another, or locations.  

Lately, however, I've shifted toward home birthday parties.  Rather than spending a small fortune renting out a place to do rock climbing, bowling or laser tag, my whole family gets in on the action and comes up with games or mysteries to make a home party. 

Recently, one of my daughters became a huge fan of the book series called "The 39 Clues".  This series consists of seven books so far, and was created by Rick Riordon, the author of the Percy Jackson series.  He's now collaborating with a variety of authors who each take to writing one book in the series.  So along those lines, and since my youngest daughter just turned 12, we're calling her party, "The 12 Clues" party.

While it is more work compared to having it at an "off-site" location, it can be fun, cost effective, and hopefully memorable.  Key is keeping the timeframe simple. 

One fun thing we are going to do is set up a "Candy Bar" with loads of jars filled with an assortment of candy.  We designed a bag tag and as a goody take-away, the will each get to fill their bag to the brim.  We'll also make tie-dyed T-shirts using simple plastic bottles filled with various colors of Rit Dye.  The T-shirts were a bargain, I picked them up for only $2.00 a piece.  Buying individual Rit dye is also less expensive than buying a prepackaged Tie Dye kit from Michaels. 

So, while more of the workload is on the family (I do get the husband involved for sure), it is fun, we're all participate and I think my kids appreciate the effort.  At least they'd better!

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