Idea No.


Construction -4yr- Hammer, Hammer, Nail (duck,duck,goose)



October 2005


Jennifer in Rome, GA

Special Mention

Construction Party

CONSTRUCTION PARTY FOR 4 YEAR OLD AND 2 YEAR OLD  Both of my boys have summer birthdays a month apart. To conserve money and everyone's time, we had a joint party for them between their birthdays (two weeks after one's special day, two weeks before the other's). We are also building a house beside my mother-in-law and to commemorate this time in our lives and our boys' interest in construction, we decided to have a construction party.  Our party site was my mother-in-law's house (she has a great 2 car covered carport) and the plan was to have it next to the house being constructed. What a great backdrop that would have been. Due to construction delays there was no construction going on at the time of the party, but the idea might work for someone else!

For invitations, I found solid color orange blank cards with clear vellum envelopes at Hobby Lobby. I then bought the yellow and black striped caution sticky tape that is usually put on the foor to mark stairs and changes in walkways. I cut the tape and taped it around the borders of the front of the card. Inside the "frame" created by the tape, I attached a poem I did on the computer which read, "Swing the Hammer, Paint the door, John Mark is turning two and Gabriel is now four . . ." On the inside I pasted all the party information from the computer. The info used construction lingo like "come join our crew for a construction birthday party. . . clock in at 5:00 pm, clock out at 7:00 pm. The party site was the "job site," etc.  I used black, yellow, and orange as our color scheme.

For decorations I got cheap black plastic tablecloths for the tables. I cut yellow "dashes" out of construction paper and taped them to the cloth to simulate a road. I then put out some of the boys' dump trucks and bulldozers to decorate the tables. Tableware was simply solid color yellow and orange plates, napkins, cups, bought inexpensively at Walmart. We also put black, orange, and yellow balloons around. I also got the yellow tape with the word "caution" printed on it in black at Home Depot and draped it around like you would streamers. It was wrapped around support columns, bushes, the tables, and a wheelbarrow which we used to hold the gifts. We also acquired an orange construction barrel (long story) which we set out in the yard.  From Birthday Express, I acquired cute cardboard signs that looked like road signs. We attached them to stakes and put them around the yard. 

The cake was the most simple and fun birthday cake I have done yet. I cleaned one of their dump trucks and then made brownies from a mix. I cut the brownies in chunks and stacked them in the back of the truck. I then poured/smeared chocolate icing around the pile and put crushed oreo (with chocolate filling)type cookies on the top to look like dirt. I found candles that were made to look like orange construction cones from Birthday Express. I put them on top of the pile and Voila! a construction birthday cake for two boys! 

For the kids, I got tool aprons from Home Depot (the ones with their logo on it). I have read from this website that some stores will give them to you. Ours would not, but you can't hurt trying! I also purchased (very inexpensively) little yellow construction hats for the kids to wear from Oriental Trading. They looked so cute and the adults had fun wearing the extras!  The activities were so easy to put together. I set out all of our blocks, legos, etc.

We had some small babies coming so I set out our plastic swimming pool with no water in it, put some toys in it they couldn't choke on and the moms just set the babies in it. That is great because the babies are contained and not getting trampled and they can't get to any toys they don't need to play with! We also had some play tool sets. The kids loved just playing with those. I had some styrofoam beams (another long story) which I spray painted black. We put some golf tees in them to act as "nails" and "screws" and the kids loved whacking away at them!

 We came up with some easy games. I filled ziploc bags with dirt to make "dirt bags." We then set out our boys' play wheelbarrow and the kids had a dirt bag toss into the wheelbarrow. I got some inflatable hammers from Oriental Trading. Each kid got one in their goody bag. We also used one for a game of "Hammer, Hammer, Nail" which is really Duck, Duck, Goose. They would bonk each other on the head when it was their turn to run. Cute!

We also had a wrecking ball pinata. It was really a soccer ball pinata spray painted black. The kids loved it! The most favorite party activity was our lawn mower/tractor ride. It has become a party tradition. We have a pull-behind trailer for our lawn mower that easily sits 5-6 toddler/preschoolers at a time. They take turns having rides around the yard. What fun! 

Food was simple sub sandwich, chips, type fare for the adults. Each kid had a brown lunch bag (since they were "on the job") with a pbj, raisins, chips,etc.  Goody bags were clear celephane bags with a construction motif found at the dolloar store.

Their goodies were their construction hats, aprons, candy from the pinata, and an inflatable hammer.   This was the easiest party I have done. It was also the least expensive (all the activity stuff was from stuff around the house!). Because of the age group, even the girls at the party loved it!

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