Saturday, July 16, 2016

The Nugget's Camping Party

The Nugget wanted a camping themed party this year!  This was my 3rd party in a row, so I was trying to make is special yet simple.

Invitation - Shutterfly

Montessori Birthday Shirt - made by drawstring, Etsy
If you don't get it, here's a description of the song children sing all over the country at various Montessori schools.  There are many variations.  At the Nugget's school, they start at their birth month and walk carefully around, matching their path around the sun to the tempo of the song so they wind up at their birth month again for each verse.  I love that it contains a built-in science lesson too!

Paracord Bracelets - easy tutorial here.  These take awhile, so I put them first in the party line up.  I wouldn't try them with younger kids unless you plan to weave them all, but for this age group, they worked great.  One party-goer even made two!

Pitching a "tent" - provide clamps and sheets, and see what happens!  This dome climber was the boys' gift from Grammy and Grandpa.  It's so wonderfully versatile, and the kids were on it and in it all morning.

Straw and mini marshmallow game - challenge kids to use only straws to move mini marshmallows from the table to a cup!  Time them for a minute, then count up the booty!

Roasting marshmallows at the gas stove for S'mores.  I used fondue forks for safety.  Since we did s'mores instead of cake (the Nugget really loves sharing a non-traditional dessert for his birthday parties), I was floundering on how to blow out the candle.  The Nugget came to the rescue by suggesting we would light a sacrificial marshmallow on fire and wish on that!

Trail mix bar - raisins, dried cranberries, Crispix, Rice Chex, pretzel sticks, goldfish, Unreal chocolate candies (hippie m&m's for us crazy people trying to avoid Red 40, and no they don't taste as good).  I set this up at the end so it could be a favor to take home.  Kids scooped their preferred ingredients into paper bags.  This is a fun and cheap party trick we have done before (cowboy party), and it gives you a chance to empty out your pantry!

Mess Hall Menu

Firewood - Pretzel Rods

Wild Berries - Fresh blueberries and strawberries.  It helps that the U-pick blueberry farm opens around the Nugget's birthday each year!  I found that plastic berry basket at Target a few years ago; it's my favorite!

Catch of the Day - Goldfish crackers

Walking Tacos - taco meat in the crockpot, and assorted toppings in a bag of Fritos!  Gosh, partying with 8-9yos is a dream.  They have manners, they squealed over the food labels, they help themselves with serving utensils (mostly), and can ask if they need something!  I love partying with preschoolers too, of course, it is just a bit more...effortless with the bigger kids!

Bug Juice - Limeade and ginger ale with lime sherbert on top

DIY trail mix
The paracord bracelet
Mini camp button - Distinct Designs Unltd.  This seller was fantastic, willing to take out the RV designs and make a custom listing with the exact number of buttons I needed!  I made little paper labels, "Thanks for camping with us!" and glued them to the leftover scrapbook paper from the food labels.  I didn't have enough to mat them, so I just had them trimmed so a little bit of scrapbook paper peeked out from the left side of the label, like a mini flag.

Welcome to Camp Nugget sign - I simply wrote fat letters on posterboard and hot glued twigs from the backyard around the edges.  It was too wide to hang with a single string, so I punched two holes at the top corners and made long yarn loops.  I then attached two 3M hooks upside down on the opposite side of the door to hang the sign flat.

I ripped up some corrugated cardboard and used a Sharpie to make an Outhouse sign for the restroom.

Food labels printed in Dionisia.  We also rounded up all the woodland critters, both plastic and stuffed, as well as raided Spork and Tater's camping kits for decorations.

I borrowed my school's wonderful log holders for signage.  Others I taped to clean bamboo skewers and stuck in the food dishes.

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