I still can't quite believe it, but Aesop turned seven last week.
As you may or may not know, Aesop that lovely, slightly nerdy, type of boy. He adores all things science, Starwars, superheroes and, mostly importantly, LEGO. It seemed only fitting that he should have a LEGO themed birthday bash this year.
There is something else you should also know : in our house we only have parties every second year. I'm not sure if this makes me a meaner Mum than most, but so far it seems to work for us.
(I should assure you that we do not restrict birthday celebrations as such, simply the actual throwing of a party. On alternate years we have an outing and family dinner etc. I'm not thaaaaat mean!)
Aesop's 5th birthday was a Starwars party, and we had so much fun planning every last little detail. This year, being a month off having a babe, I had a little less energy (and cash!) to spend but still wanted to make it every bit as awesome for him. I wanted to keep it all quite low-key, but not make him feel like he gave anything up, if that makes sense.
Aesop chose 4 friends from his class (this, I think, was the hardest part! Only four!) and delivered hand drawn LEGO head invites to them. Abraham whipped these up, and all the Mums commented on how simple and effective they were. The rsvp's came back very quickly!
I spent a bit of time scouring the net and compiled some ideas on Pinterest. We planned a few simple party games ( a hunt for little LEGO heads around the house, a tower building competition and a Starwars LEGO game..) but on the day the boys were happier to just scramble through the mountain of bricks we laid out in the lounge, and to play with Aesop's other toys. We didn't plan prizes for any of the games, because that always adds to the expense and the kids soon forget about them anyway!
The food was kept very simple, too. We had the usual party faves : cheerio sausages, sausage rolls, mini samosas, mini pita pizzas, burger ring chips, malteasers and a GIANT bowl of lollies. I'm really glad I kept it straight forward, because in the end they would have been happy with just sausage rolls and lollies! They were even so full that they weren't interested in the cake/cupcakes when they came out!
The cake (which is mostly still in the fridge, anyone fancy popping round for a cuppa and cake?) was baked in a square tin, and iced with four upside down cupcakes on top. It was not my finest show of decorating, but I'm glad I didn't spend more time on it - the kids hardly looked at it!
The cupcakes were plain vanilla with coloured icing, topped with some very cool brick lollies I found on Trademe. They didn't get eaten either! Madness!
And, finally, the goodie bags. These contained more of the super cool LEGO lollies (they actually stack! And taste good! Bonus!), a wee colouring book we printed out (from here) and a minifigure. I popped them into a yellow sandwich bag and drew a face on with vivid. Voila! The kids were stoked.
I learned a very valuable lesson at this years party - sometimes less really is more.