Both my boys were stuck with birthdays that coincide with major winter holidays, and last year Bear started noticing that his friends had birthday parties with, well, other kids.
So, last summer I put into play the plan I'd had on the back burner from the moment I saw two lines on the stick and did the math... a summertime half birthday party that his friends could actually attend because they're not driving to Aunt Ethel's for the divorced side of the family's turkey dinner that Saturday.
Now I need to be clear about something. This particular event did not live up to my normal Martha Was Here standards. I was struggling with an autistic, behaviorally regressing 4 year old. And a new baby I was starting to suspect had sensory issues. And I was just starting to work again.
It was slapdash at best. I suspect some of these concepts will end up on someone's Pinterest fail post. But the ideas were all mine, so I thought I should at least share them to give someone else the chance to do it better.
This one definitely gets filed under "Hey, the kids were happy."
Obviously there was more food than this for a party of 20+ people, these were just the themed items I managed to work out.
I used a basic meatball recipe and rolled them out on a sheet pan lined with plastic wrap, then used a ruler and pizza cutter. I baked them on a foil lined cooling rack over a sheet pan. In hindsight, I should have measured the depth of my hammer handle toothpicks before rolling out the meat.
Obviously the toothpick holding these together is a problem for toddlers, something we quickly realized as the younger siblings of the boys the party was for enjoyed these muskmelon and red grape snacks.
My son was so enamored with these he continued to ask me for them months after the party.
Yes, I do realize my cake decorating teacher would be mortified. Thank you for asking.
(Whadaya want me to say? It was nearly 100 degrees, the frosting was a melty mess and I did it with a baby hanging off my legs.) The shield was courtesy of Bear's Captain America action figure.
This party was in 2012, when you couldn't set foot in a big box retailer without tripping over a display full of Avengers schwag. You can still find plenty of Avengers items at party stores. I found a bunch of these cups in a Walmart dollar bin and snagged enough for each of the kids to take one home. Their moms saw through my clever plan and I was left with a pile of Avengers cups, which Bear is perfectly happy about.
I should note that I did not buy the Black Widow one and I immediately regretted the oversight. The lone girl at the party is one of my son's best friends, and she was genuinely upset there wasn't a girl super hero cup for her to use. This summer I found a Wonder Woman cup and added it to the collection just for her.
(And yes, I am aware Wonder Woman and the Avengers are from different comic 'verses. Trust me, my husband will not let me forget it.)
That was pretty much it. Oh, we did make limeade and called it Hulk Juice. And forgot it in the fridge and the kids never really drank it. But later on the adults declared it delicious with vodka.
I'm On Pinterest! Shocker, eh?
Still haven't had time to sort out embedding a Pin It button, so here's a link to my Pinterest board with these Avengers party ideas.