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    • #240361
      BiggerPiggyBank
      Participant

      check out this website…
      http://familyfun.go.com/parties/birthday/
      I am a firm believer in NOT hiring the carnival stuff. The last 3 years we have
      had my son’s bday parties at the park or at home, with homemade carnival stuff
      and the kids had as much or more fun than the parties with the inflatable
      jumping things and slides.
      We did Harry Potter two years ago. I spray painted a ball with gold glitter
      paint and had a relay race with it as the Quidditch thing.

      I got a large box
      and painted it to look like a secret chamber, cut the door out and my husband
      even rigged up an old doorknob we had (complete with the skeleton key face
      plate) and put it on the door. I had an older cousin to sit outside in raggedy
      (peasant witch) clothes with a grab bag (made out of bandannas). The grab bag
      had all kinds of metal things in it and lots of keys.

      If they pulled out the
      key that matched the key for the chamber door, they got to get things out of a
      treasure chest (dollar store prizes). I probably spent $50 with the cake–which
      I tried to make but it fell apart the morning of the party, so I had to run to
      store and buy one! Last year we did a nascar thing.

      I got lots of grocery
      boxes, cut the bottom out and sprayed each a base color. I set a course in our
      yard and split the kids into teams. Each team decorated
      their car with tempra paints, stickers, markers. We went on and played some
      other games and ate.

      Then went back to the cars (dried) and had relay races.
      The kids “wore” the cars, had to run the course, come back, the next person in
      line did the same. First team complete wins more $ store prizes. I gave each a
      bag with candy and a hot wheel (the ones that come in the large box with many
      for few $$$) in it as a goody bag.

      An earlier year, we did Thomas the
      tank…again I used a huge box and drew Thomas on it, with holes for bean bags
      to be thrown it. I left the box complete, except for the bean bag holes, so the
      kids could go in and play inside. They were 4 then.

      I bought ticking material
      and made goody bags with bubbles and whistles inside.
      I can’t remember what else we did, but it was all train related. The cowboy
      party, I made goody bags out of cheap denim with hemp/twine as the drawstring.
      We had relay races with little red wagons full of straw. We tried to rope a
      bale of pine straw.

      We painted faces (branding animals). I borrowed some stick
      horses for races. Although I later found idea to use old brooms or dowels and
      make horses out of them.
      A neighbor had a cute party for her daughter.

      The kids did crafts….the girls
      decorated capes (scraps of cloth) with glitter glue and sequins. the boys made
      shields out of poster board (pre-cut) they just decorated them with markers.
      Mom hid gold play coins in the yard as well as a toy dragon. The one who found
      the most coins won a prize.

      The one who found the dragon got to keep it. Each
      child was given a “goody bag” before the “search. She had just taken some purple
      inexpensive fabric and sewn them up and used gold string as drawstring.

      The
      kids got to keep their gold coins, as well as some bubbles and the boys got
      “swords” made of poster board and the girls got wands (poster board) also before
      the “search”. It was cute and fun…and really little $$$. I always like to
      see imagination used instead of spending a fortune on amusements.
      Are you inviting boys and girls?

      If just girls, a Barbie thing is always great.
      CHeerleaders and football players. Or a princess diary theme. Tell them to come
      dressed as princesses and do some stampin’ stuff–make picture frames or
      something.

      Make some bead jewelry. If she likes spiderman and you are inviting
      boys and girls, tell the boys to come as spiderman and the girls as his
      girlfriend. Use some halloween crafts to do spider things.

      What about spy
      kids? have a mystery and let them find clues to something. scooby doo?
      catwoman?

      Personally, I love Rocket Power cartoon and Thornberrys…so I am
      trying to talk my son into a jungle safari thing or hawaiian surfing thing for
      this year. Will probably do spiderman!
      Sorry I got carried away, but I love doing birthday parties and halloween
      costumes!

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