- Monday ~ Masters, library, grocery shopping, other errands & Taekwondo.
- Tuesday ~ 1880s & Taekwondo.
- Wednesday ~ Masters, Taekwondo & homeschool co-op potluck.
- Thursday was jam-packed with last minute preparations for Sweetie's 5th birthday. Yet, I did manage to get a quick 3.5 mile recovery run in - although it served more as recovery from the stress of 'party planning' than to recover from strenuous workouts... I skipped both of my 'hard' workouts for the week (2x3 miles @Tempo and 4x800 & 4x400 @SI).
- Friday ~ prep for garage sale, homeschool park outing, grocery shopping, errands and Chamber dinner.
- Saturday ~ garage sale, 2 trips to Goodwill, re-organized my school stuff in the garage, moped around the house in frustration of not running & poor result of garage sale
- Sunday ~ long run (9 miles, 5 shy of plan due to time constraints - I really need to stop slacking; At the rate I'm going, I'll be lucky to PR let alone BQ), kiddos and I met Mom, Richard and my niece and nephew at Crescent Lake for a picnic.
As I eluded to in an earlier post, Sweetie wanted a fairy themed party and so we jumped online to gather ideas. We came across several that we liked bits and pieces of and so we decided to take the best of each and create our own, using the movie The Last Unicorn as our storyline.
Most of the children at the party were girls and thereby came dressed as fairy princesses. The boys came as they are and so we imagined them as wizards and elves.
Sweetie long ago informed me that she wanted to be Sunburst from the Fairytopia movie, Magic of the Rainbow. I managed to put together her costume with minimal investment. She loved the end result and looked adorable. Twice, I attempted to make orange wings but failed to obtain the right gauge wire. When I informed Sweetie of my struggle, she said, "That's okay. Some fairies don't have wings. The other fairies that have wings carry them when they fly. That's really cool. I don't need wings. They just get in the way anyway." What a trooper!!
As the kids arrived, they played on the play structures and a few worked on creating their talisman pendants (plastic shrink film). Shortly after everyone arrived, I asked the kids to join me near the gazebo or 'Cave'. I then introduced myself as the 'Wise Butterfly' and read them the story of the 'Red Bull and the Last Unicorn'. I informed them that the creatures of the enchanted forest were relying on them to help save the unicorn, whom was locked away in the cave. They would have to work together to solve problems and battle the bull's minions.
I assigned tasks or roles to everyone and the quest was underway. (Upon arrival, I had also assigned roles for the adults - most of whom facilitated an activity station so that I could lead the kids along the course and keep everyone on task and motivated.) The kids were very engaged throughout the entire 'quest' and all reported they had a good time.
There were 8 activity stations each with a unique challenge or task that required the kids to work together. The most exciting challenge was encountering giant spiders in the forest and crawling through the sticky web. Just as the kids got through, they met up with a scary dragon (Buddy dressed in his dragon costume from Halloween '06). The kids asked the Fauns for help to lull the dragon to sleep by playing music on imaginary instruments and singing. Another favorite was the battle with the Swamp Monsters (the dads) to win back the Dwarves' tools. We needed more time to decorate our weapons but alas we had to move quickly. Another favorite for the kids was getting escorted across the river on Pegasus (piggy back on a dad) - but aiding the foals (balloons) to a protected cave proved more tricky than anticipated (it was rather windy and the foals didn't want to stay sheltered).
The quest was completed in about an hour and we then converged back to the gazebo for birthday cake and the obligatory singing of "Happy Birthday." I had brought candles along but by the time they all got seated, the kids were eager to eat. Sweetie and others and already begun to eat their cake before I even had time to think of the candles so we skipped that part.
To create a more magical, fairy-like ambiance, the party began just before dusk with twinkling lights adorning the gazebo. It was beginning to get chilly though, so as the kids were finishing up their cake, I handed out goodie bags (Tinkerbell cards, Tinkerbell craft activity, and Pixie Sticks for the girls / the boys' bags were slightly different) and thanked them for coming. They were also allowed to take home their champagne flutes (with which they were served Mango Nectar for strength by the Tree Spirits upon capturing the trolls) and their enchanted weapons (girls - flower wands / boys - plastic bow, rubber-suction tipped arrow & shield).
We cleaned things up quickly (Thank you, Deb & Steve - you guys are awesome!) and were home in our PJs by 8:30. Of course, Sweetie wanted to open her gifts immediately when we got home. It was nice to slow that part of the celebration down and to really appreciate each gift, the giver and the thought that went into their choice of gift. It was so fun to watch her expression and to r wereecord actual quotes of excitement and appreciation.
side notes ~
Submitted to Giveaway: Party Time! at Crazy Hip Blog Mamas on the 14th of November 2007; sponsored by Projector123.com.
If you are interested in knowing more about the Fairy Party - I'd be happy to share. :D