Sunday, April 22, 2012

Ninjago Party

Ryan's 6th Birthday - Ninjago Party

My son really wanted a Ninjago party for his 6th birthday.   I don't think they sell Ninjago party supplies yet so we made our own. has posters of all of the characters to download that we used to make a sign and some other decorations.  He wanted to make the invitations himself so I let him draw a picture of the 4 ninjas.  I searched online for a few ninja fonts and added the information to his picture.  I scanned them and printed them on cards.  He was so proud of them.  They also had our address and rsvp on the bottom which I removed before posting this picture. 

I made all the kids ninja headbands with what I hope was their names on them.  I searched for websites that will translate your name into Japanese.  I have no way of knowing if they were correct, but the kids loved them.  I made the headbands out of white broadcloth.  I used the entire width of the fabric so that I didn't have to sew the ends.  I started with 6 inch strips of the broadcloth.  I folded them in half and sewed them into long tubes.  I flipped them right side out and ironed them flat.  The finished headbands were about 2.5 inches wide and 45 inches long.  I printed out the names and cut them out.  I slid the paper inside the tube of fabric the traced them onto the fabric with fabric markers.  The boys had a red circle in the center, their name on one side and the symbol for ninja on the other.  The girls had their name in the center and some branches and flowers I drew around them.  I was really glad that they all decided to wear them.  

We also had swords for all the kids that I got in the dollar spot at Target.  We got lucky there.  We blew up lots of balloons and had the kids try to keep them in the air with the swords.  I found some great instructions to make oragami throwing stars at  I made about 40 of them in lots of bright colors, and the kids tried to throw them into a bucket.   We also got these great chopsticks for the kids to eat with and then take home from  

 Because all of the favors were being used during the party I decided to make the favor bags a craft.  I used yellow duct tape and some paint pens to make the faces on white gift bags.  I set them out with some crayons and let the kids create their own ninja gift bags. 

I also made some ninja sugar cookies to give out as favors.

Here is what the favors looked like all together.

For the food we had potstickers, mini spring rolls, grilled chicken on a stick and a really good Asian Noodle Salad that I found on

I found some really good ideas on Life, Right Now for candy sushi and dipped fortune cookies.  I thought they came out really cute.

I always have some sort of fruit tray at my parties, but I wanted it to be the color of the Ninjago ninjas... white, black, blue and red.  I couldn't come up with anything white so I added some mini marshmallows to my tray of blackberries, blueberries and strawberries.

We had ninja cupcakes and a Sensei Wu cake.

 I had planned to make a ninja head cake, but at the last minute my son wanted the Sensei Wu.  I have only made a few cakes with fondant and kind of make it up as I go.  I could really use some lessons on the proper way to do it.  It took about 8 tries before I came up with a way to make the hat.   I rolled out the fondant in a big circle.  I cut the circle like a pizza into 8 triangles.  I laid each triangle on the edge of the one next to it and formed the hat.  I had to put tall cups all the way around the cup to make the brim of the hat flare out while the fondant dried.  It was the only thing I had that was the right height.  It was a lot of work, but my son was so excited when he saw it.  He said it was perfect and way better than he expected!

The party was so much fun. 

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Robot Party

Ryan's 5th Birthday - Robot Party

My son Ryan couldn't decide between transformers, R2D2 or Wall E for his 5th birthday.  We decided to just go with a general robot theme.  We had so much fun planning this party.  We used lots of stuff that otherwise would have ended up in the recycling bin.  Our favors were empty cans that I hot glued different metal parts to.  It was a good time to clean out the garage and find extra nuts, bolts, washers, picture hangers and anything else I could find. 

I was determined to have robot cookies, but I couldn't find a robot cookie cutter anywhere.  I took 2 old cookies cutters and used them to make the robot cutter.  It took about an hour of bending with pliers to get it the way I wanted and some hot glue to hold it together.  In the end it all worked out.

I decorated half of the cookies to be part of the favors.  The other half was for a craft/snack at the party.

I made 2 big robots out of boxes and silver wrapping paper.  Some "junk" hot glued on for decorations.  The kids loved them.

Ryan came up with a game idea.  He wanted everyone to wear a robot costume and use a robot arm to get candy out of a box.  We ended up making 1 costume out of a box and mask out of another box.  We covered the boxes in wrapping paper. The candy they had to grab was packs of mini twizzlers which we called wires.

We had lots of activities for the kids.  First, I bought some robot cutouts at Michaels for the kids to decorate with foam shape stickers, glitter glue, crayons and eyes.

Our second craft was to make their own robot mask.  I found some silver square paper plates.  I cut out the eyes and a flap for the nose.  I punched holes on the sides and attached some chenille stems.  They twisted them together behind their head to keep the mask on when they finished.  We used more of the foam shapes as decorations.

Our last 2 crafts were also snacks.  I had some mini and large marshmallows and some pretzel sticks to make little robots.  I also put out some food markers to draw the faces.  I guess I forgot to take some pictures of the creations the kids came up with, but you can use your imagination.  They were very cute!

Our last activity was to use the left over cookies. I put out the cookies, squeeze bottles of gray icing and a cupcake pan filled with sprinkles and candy for the kids to decorate their own robot cookies.  This seemed to be the most popular activity. 

I found the cake idea in the book What's new, cupcake?   I love this book along with the first book Hello Cupcake.  They both have super cute ideas. 

We had lots of people so I also made some cupcakes with gray frosting and silver sprinkles.  We have lots of robot toys in the house so they because decorations for the party.

I made some robot brownie pops from the cake pops book by Bakerella which took a lot of time, but we so cute.  I was so happy I made them.  I'm not sure that I will make brownie pops again.  They were really hard to work with because of all the oil in them.  Cake pops are much easier.

I tried to make the food robot themed.  There was nuts and bolts snack mix which was pretzel sticks, fruit loops and some other cereal drizzled in white chocolate and topped with silver sprinkles.  We also had computer chips which were blue corn chips.

We also had loose screw pasta salad, fruit salad and a robot made of fruit.  I got the idea for the fruit robot online somewhere, but I can't remember where.  Post a comment if its yours and I will add a link... sorry!

I made a candy tray with silver sixlets, brown chocolate twizlers,  some kind of gummy coils, and long flat sour gummy strips.

I filled the tin can favors with robot stickers I found on ebay, robot pops from Oriental trading, the decorated sugar cookies and wind up robots from Target.    I put some silver duct tape around the top edge of the can to cover any sharp edges.

It was a great party.  All the kids had lots of fun and my son loved it.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Carnival Party

Owen's 2nd Birthday - Carnival Party

I really wanted to do a carnival theme for Owen's 2nd birthday.  I searched on Etsy, and found lots of great party printables.  I decided to use this Circus Carnival Printable Party by Dimple Prints.  The set had lots of signs for my games and food, plus all the other paper goods I needed to make.

I found some red and white polka dot wrapping paper at Hobby Lobby to use as a backdrop, and to cover the tables.  I saw the circus frame while I was there, and thought it would be a good centerpiece for the wall.

I tried to make lots of carnival food.   We had mini funnel cakes

mini pretzles

carmel apple slices on a stick

carmel popcorn with and without nuts...  I made the printable cupcake wrappers that said popcorn.  I used double sided tape to attach a real cupcake wrapper in the bottom, and then I used them as serving cups to hold the carmel corn.

You can't have a carnaval party without cotton candy

cake pops too...

Finally a big pitcher of lemonade to wash it all down....

I made the cake myself.  I saw the idea for the cake and giant swirl pop in the center somewhere online.  I can't remember where.  This party was actually a year and a half ago.  If it's yours comment and I will link you... sorry.  I cut all the shapes out of fondant and added them to the white cake.  It came out better than I expected.  I just wanted it to be really colorful.

For the games we had pin the trunk on the elephant

a clown bean bag toss... I searched for clown coloring pages online, found one and drew it really big on a cardboard display board.  I cut holes to look like balls and made bean bags with some fabric squares stuffed with dry beans.

a fishing game...  I used another cardboard display board.  I painted it to look like water and fish.  I attached a small bucket to a play fishing pole.  My aunt was kind enough to sit back there and fill the bucket with prizes (stickers, bracelets, silly straws & tattoos) when the kids caught a "fish"

Everyone got clown noses and silly glasses

The favors were elephant shapes sugar cookies in red striped bags.  I guess I didn't take a picture of the cookies.