And an idea began to form...
We began birthday talks months ago around here. [
Ahhhh and then I began to research.... Thank goodness for Pinterest. I found lots of awesome ideas, and I began to make notes and lists. Pages and pages of notes and lists.
Now I do have to say, that Pinterest can do one of two things, when you're attempting to plan something like this. It can either make you go totally overboard. Or it can make you feel completely inadequate. As long as you're aware of this, you're okay.
You need to remember: that you will always come across something else that would be perfect for your event, the day before you have your event. There comes a time, you just. Have. To. Stop.
You have to have your party. No more research. I don't feel like I went overboard. Like I mentioned before, I'd been planning this party for weeks. So I did little snippets of things here and there, and to be honest, it never actually seemed too overwhelming...
What I love most about planning parties for my kids, is that they want to know very little about the details. They just want to show up and be 'wow'-ed, just like everybody else. They like the surprise. So aside from what flavour of cake they want, they're totally content to let me take the wheel. It's awesome.
And this year, was more awesome than usual. Last year I had a party for Madelyn, because I felt like she'd be scarred for life if I didn't. Last year we weren't exactly in a happy place, her and I. [I'm happy to report that things are much, MUCH better now] It's amazing what a difference a positive attitude can make.
Don't get me wrong. The day of the party, I thought I was completely insane. I'm pretty sure I even swore to the parents that arrived to pick their kids up, that next years party would take place at the nearest McDonald's Play Place... But as soon as the last party guests left, and Madelyn told me how awesome it was, the craziness of it, faded into the background.
Here is the Mad Science Party:
The poster on the wall, which evidently I forgot to take a picture of welcomed guests to the party, and they had to come in and 'sanitize' themselves and take an 'antibiotic' to ensure their safety. The were to Enter At Own Risk.
Each child had to sign a waiver before they could enter. It was a lot of 'have a lot of fun' rules.
Our antibiotics were Mike 'n Ikes, each guest had to have 3.
I drew lines on all the plastic glasses to resemble beakers. They're horrifically expensive in real life.
Once the experiments started, everyone needed their safety goggles and name tags.
I made 'lab coats' out of white garbage bags. They served the purpose just fine.
I used a plastic table cloth, cut into strips to create the green background. I did the happy birthday sign on the computer, cut it out an strung it up.
Each child had their name on the back of the straw. My attempt at keeping drinks sorted out.
Miss Madelyn's 'Atom Structure'
Set up for experiments.
The only major disappointment I had, was the weather. I'd planned to have all the kids around a big table at once, outside, doing experiments at the same time. But it absolutely POURED RAIN the day of the party, so I had to come up with plan B. Plan B was doing them in the kitchen, but I had to do the kids in groups, rather than all at once. That made it take 3x longer for each experiment. While the kids were doing their experiments, the others were watching Bill Nie the Science Guy. It worked out pretty well actually, thankfully Barry was able to reign them in when they got a bit bored.
The birthday cake.
We made slime. It was a highlight for sure.
Because the day was so dark and dreary, unfortunately my pictures were a bit on the dark and dreary side. And I didn't get as many pictures take of the actual party, as I would have liked but what can you do?
People thought I was nuts, for having a 3 hour party. And guess what, we did run out of time. There is one experiment we didn't get in, the volcano experiment. Perhaps it was a hidden blessing... I blame the weather, and the fact that I had to do kids in groups of 4 at a time. Had we all been outside and done the experiments together, we could totally have got them done. I also had 3 experiments, that they would have just watched me do, and we didn't get to those either.
I would recommend [of course, now that I've done this] to have one major experiment, that all the kids can do, like making slime. And then do the rest of the experiments myself, and have them all standing around the table watching. They were able to get 3 out of 4 experiments in, and everyone seemed happy. [That's also the bonus of having my kids not knowing what I'm planning. They're not disappointed if we don't get to something!] Ha!
The good news, I have some fun experiments to do with them this summer!