Sunday, April 22, 2012

To Infinity and Beyond!

Liam turned two earlier this week and his birthday party was today. It was wonderful! So many of our amazing family and friends came to help us celebrate a huge milestone in our son's life. In preparation for this day, I have been getting crafty! For the past few weeks, I have been working on project after project to help make his big day a special one. In this blog, I will share all of the fun ideas that I had, borrowed, and just plan stole from friends and the creative geniuses of Pinterest.
My first assignment was to create signs that would not only reflect the Toy Story theme of the party, but also inform guests of activities, food, and where the party was taking place. I started this project with the cardboard that was left over from our closet/bedroom renovation project (we were lucky to have so many boxes). I used graphics found on the internet and Toy Story products to draw the words on the cardboard, then I used a box-cutter to cut them out, and painted them using the colors shown on the logos.
The door to the playroom
Over the island in the kitchen

Welcoming guests at the front door

Next, I used felt to create a "pin the body parts on Mr. Potato Head" game. I bought one small sheet of felt in each color needed, then cut out the body parts. Last, I glued the prickly side of a velcro strip onto each feature. They turned out great, and the kids loved it!

I also made a beautiful collage of all my favorite pictures of Liam, shaped in the number two. I started by drawing a large, block number two on a large piece of cardboard. Then I used a box-cutter to get rid of the edges. Finally, I was able to tape each picture on to the cardboard, being mindful to keep the shape. This is my favorite project for sentimental reasons.

The most time-consuming, yet most rewarding project, was the gift bag punch box. I once again, started with a large cardboard box. I used a box-cutter to create 15 holes on either side of the box. I didn't care if the holes looked nice, they would be covered anyway. Then I had to use another box to create shelves on the inside. I used one piece that was large enough to go width-wise and top to bottom, to create an anchor for the shelves. Then I cute four pieces that had the same dimensions as the inside of the box, cut them in half length-wise, and taped them to the anchor piece. Next I put two pillars between the holes to divide each bag from the others and to support the shelving.

Once the inside of the box was complete, it was time to make it look pretty. I chose to cover the whole box in some balloon wrapping paper I already had. But I needed to create the nice, neat holes first. I measured the distance from the bottom of the box to the first hole, then measured the same on the wrapping paper. I used a tupperware lid to trace the circles, then cut each one out. When I was done with this, I taped tissue paper onto each row, covering the holes. I highly suggest doing this after creating the holes on the paper, so that you can see the holes on the box, and can check your measurements.

I realized when I had finished, that there was a pretty good-sized space left where you could see the box. Instead of going out to buy more paper, I created a mosaic from the scarps cut from the circles. It turned out really nice. I chose to create the punching holes on both sides of the box. This is not needed, but we had more than 15 kiddos at the party and I decided to use it to dole out the prizes for the games as well. The kids LOVED this! It was a great way to make the gift bags even more fun.

My last project was to make stary sky play-do. I have never made play-do before, but it turned out awesome! I used black and blue food coloring and silver, white, and blue sparkles. It went great with the Buzz Lightyear theme.

There were also some projects that I did not necessarily "do", but had a part in. My husband's step-mom is a wonderful baker and is amazing at cake decorating, so I designed a cake and she made it for us. Once again, I was happily surprised when my idea turned out better than I thought (quite possibly due to Clair's fantastic skills). The food we chose was also well thought out. I watched the Toy Story movies to find snacks that would go along with the theme. We ended up with chips (cool ranch and BBQ), cheese puffs, and pizza (of course).

I have to say, that putting this much effort and time into one event was exhausting, but well worth it. Liam's smile and comments from our guests, told me that all of my effort was noticed and appreciated.

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