The Groovy Birthday Party

Temperature? About 100 degrees. Humidity? Higher than we're used to. Yesterday was Charlie's 11th birthday party. Since his birthday falls at the end of August, the hottest time of year, we planned an early evening soiree to beat some of the heat, with projects to keep the kids and adults busy. A good time was had by all...

If you've never made a treasure stone, you really should. The very clever folks from Kid Concoctions came up with an ingenious method of mixing sand, salt, used coffee grounds, flour, and water to come up with a "rock" that you can put a prize inside (hence the name "treasure stone"). Our young friends were happy to do the mixing for me. You really have to get your hands into the mixture to form the "stones." The end product looks surprisingly like a granite rock, and after it dries for a day or two, the kids can break it open to get the prize inside. This is a very cool project (and the adults were happy to make theirs too).

Watch Kid Concoctions "Treasure Stones" video.

Our other groovy project was tie-dyeing tee-shirts. Husband found a great link to an easy, minimally-messy method of tie-dyeing (though Husband's hands are still tie-dyed) involving a simple twisting of the shirt and squirting dye on both sides. You then put the shirt in a bag, let it sit overnight, rinse it out, wash, dry, and you're ready to go. We tie-dyed about 30 shirts throughout the evening; and, of course, all the adults were the first in line. A couple of Charlie's friends came over in their new far-out tie-dyed shirts today and they looked, well, groovy.

Kick yourself back in time and try on some groovy tie-dyeing for size. Watch Jonathon Stewart's "How to Tie-Dye" video.

We've found that kids really love projects and games at parties, even the most simple. Limbo contests are a big hit, as well as frisbee tosses and three-legged races.

Kudos to Violet's amazing crocodile cake. A very long, green beast made out of cupcakes with expertly-shaped frosting scales. The kids all wanted a piece with claws. Very impressive. All that effort; gone in mere seconds.

Today has been recovery day. The house seems to have birthday gifts in every corner and I feel a year older (even though it's not my birthday).