I'm a little behind on my posts, but that is ok ... I've been having lots of fun!
We celebrated a birthday in the Jackson house recently. My beautiful little girl turned 6 in March. She wanted a Harry Potter birthday party. Her wish is my command :).
I had a very limited budget. We wanted to get this pretty little talented girl a new piano, since she has done so well with her lessons over the past 6 months and shows clear talent. I told her she could only invite two of her friends along with their sibling, so we had a total of 6 kids (including my two kids). We did it on a Wednesday after school in the park, so I didn't have to worry about reserving anything or crowds.
The fun part of having a small party is that I have more chance to get creative and make cool stuff for the kids to really get into character, be creative, and imaginative with the party theme.
As I mentioned, my budget was small, so this entire party was brought to you by the 99 cent store and Mom's elbow grease.
First, every Witch and Wizard must have a wand. I found this cool tutorial for how to make a wand using chopsticks and hot glue. I added some jewels for an extra cool touch and also to make each persons wand easily identifiable, to avoid any squabbles.
We needed some game ideas, so of course I wanted to try to do something with Quidditch. I wanted to try to make a cool broom stick like this. I was going to go hunting for cool branches like these, but there isn't a whole lot of drift wood on our beaches like there is back home. I ended up finding mops at the 99 cent store that would work perfect!
I bought 6 of the zebra striped mops, plus one blue polka dot one for me, so I could use the extra 6 mop heads over time to clean my home. :) Bonus! I had a neighbor cut them down to 28" long, so the kids wouldn't take each other out with the long sticks.
I cut some black felt to look like this. Two pieces for each broom.
I started by laying the first piece under the broom stick with the stringy ends facing the opposite direction (toward the stick).
I used a staple gun to fix it to the broom stick.
I rolled the loose end around and stapled that to the broom stick.
Then with the second piece of felt I did the same thing.
Wrap around and staple again.
Then fold the stringy ends down over the staples. Now it looks more like a broom.
I cut some small strips of white felt, wrapped them around the broom part and hot glued them into place.
Here is what it looks like finished.
No Quidditch game is complete without a Snitch! I used some of my white felt and gold fleece and hand sewed it together, then stuffed it.
At first I was going to separate everyone into the different houses at Hogwarts, but with the young kids I thought it would be best if we were all in the same house. Aubrey and Bayne love Gryffindor, so I made red and gold scarfs for everyone to wear.
These came in handy because it was chilly that day!
For invitations, I made these cute little parchment paper scrolls. I used nice water color paper and painted it with coffee to give it an aged look. I think I wrote on it first and then painted it.
I did a separate sheet for the back side and glued them together, so the ink wouldn't show through on the back.
Then I rolled it up and tied it with a hair band and attached a ribbon.
I loved the idea of delivering it via Owl Post, since that is how they do it in the Wizarding world. I was only passing these out to two homes, so it wasn't too hard for me to make two owl balloons. The kids loved it! I copied my owl from someone else. I found the image on pinterest.
My dog loves balloons. Not sure she knows what to do now that it's staring back at her.
As luck would have it, her birthday fell near St. Paddy's day, so they had pots of gold for the holiday. To me they looked like perfect cauldrons for the party favors. I grabbed the wiffle balls to act as Quaffles. I got the little plastic containers for their sweets from Honeydukes.
Here is what went into each of their cauldrons.
We also played a game with plastic insects I got from the 99 cent store. I never got any pictures of that, though. I threw the insects out all over the grass and had them search for each kind of bug. For example, I would say find the beetles and they would all run around looking in the grass for beetles, but they were only allowed to bring one back to their parent at a time. It was an easy game, but fun! They had to collect them to make their "potion". Each kid got to take home what they found in their cauldron.
I also picked up 6 hula hoops and some twine to make my Quidditch arena.
I hung them from the trees and created a race course. I separated 3 on one side and 3 on another and put the snitch in the middle on the grass. Each kid had to ride their broom stick and throw the quaffle through each hoop and race the other rider to the Snitch. It was fun, but there was a little fighting and crying with the young ones, so I switched it to a time trial where they went individually, trying to get all six hoops and get the the Snitch. Eventually, they just played on their own however they wanted. Everyone walking by loved it. Even the police officer must have thought it was cool because it is apparently illegal to hang things from the trees at the park. He let me off with a warning and let us leave them up for the remainder of the party. :)
Our little set up! I brought chips, kettle corn, carrots, apples, and cupcakes.
It truly was a magical party complete with a real rainbow!!! Can you see it?
It was a great day and a big success!! The kids loved that they got to bring home so many fun toys, too.
We also just finished our 3rd Harry Potter book!!!
Which means MOVIE PARTY!!!
Since I went so crazy over the birthday party, I didn't do much for the movie party. I did, however, want to try this Butterbeer Recipe I found.
Aubrey liked it a lot. I did, too, but I went into a sugar coma after. It was a bit too much!
Bayne and Pops didn't like theirs much. Again .. way too sugary!
Next time we will just use plain old Cream Soda for our "Butterbeer" :).
We just started book 4 - Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. It is a whopping 750ish pages long, so it's going to be a while before our next Harry Potter movie party. I love how much these books have inspired their imaginations .... and apparently mine, as well!