Oswald Party 4yr
Megan in Lincoln, Nebraska USA
INVITATIONS: I designed Oswald invitations on regular printer paper using the internet to find a picture of Oswald and his friends that I pasted" on the invitations at the top with the message reading something like..."Please join Oswald and his friends for ___________ (insert child's name) 4th Birthday on _________ (date) at _________ (time). There will be lots of games snacks and fun! Come comfy and ready to play!" I included sizes for clothing and items my daughter currently enjoyed as gift ideas (because many people were wondering and had asked me). I also included brief directions to our home (for anyone who didn't know) as well as RSVP information. I printed two per page (using Microsoft Word) as length-wise invites (a little smaller than #10 envelopes...so they'd fit in nicely). And we always address the invitations to the child specifically because they absolutely love getting their own invitations! DECORATIONS: The house was decorated with bright-colored balloons and streamers...our daughter loves anything bright. We didn't put too much effort into decorations this time because the focus was on the activities cake and birthday girl (since the activities were spread out where we were at and it would look too cluttered). But the guests didn't seem to even notice the lack of "a lot" of decorations because we made the home a nice shoes-off "cozy" feeling..."laid-back" really seems to set a fun atmosphere for everyone to get comfortable in rather quickly. ACTIVITIES/GAMES: first we played Oswald Twister (like regular "Twister"). To accomplish this I bought a large piece of plastic (about 9ft.x 13ft) from Wal Mart for about $4 dollars and some different colored permanent markers (Wal Mart $4-5). Using a larger round plate I traced circles on the plastic sheet (the sheet was trimmed down to about 4ft. or 5ft. X 6ft) with the permanent markers (6 circles across and 4 circles down = 24 circles total). Then in the first row of circles I drew Oswald the second row I drew Daisy the third row was Henry the penguin and the last row was Oswald's dog Weiney. I made a homemade spinner with an 8X11in sheet of white paper "divided" into 4 sections (labeled "right foot left foot right hand left hand") with each character in each section then put a toothpick right in the middle of the paper and made a paper arrow spinner...putting it down onto the toothpick (so it could spin). We spun if it landed on "right foot Daisy" they put their right foot on Daisy's circle. First the kids did it and had a blast. Then the parents got down and did it too! It was amazing that this game went over so great for both parents and kids! It also was a great ice-breaker game! Everyone was really relaxed now and having lots of fun. Then the kids played Pin the Petals on Daisy. To make this I used construction paper and cut out her head (just the center circle inside the petals) and her body (with green construction paper) then cut out petals (yellow construction paper) all the same size and shape. Using rolled-up tape on the backs of each petal we spun the kids around blindfolded the number of their age (4 years = 4 spins) birthday girl first. The third game we played was Hide From the Rain Cloud. Inspired by an episode of Oswald where a pesky rain cloud kept following him and his dog and they tried avoiding it so they wouldn't catch a cold. The person "it" (like in Hide-and-Seek) was the rain cloud and while they counted the parents helped their kids find a spot somewhere in the "designated" areas of our house to hide. Whoever was found became sick until everyone was found. We played a couple rounds. The kids (and their parents!) got really creative with their spots! It was a lot of fun! After all that we took a little break. The kids (and parents) grabbed some drinks and snacks. Then we sang happy birthday and had cake and ice-cream and opened presents. Afterwards we played one last game (saved the best game for last...a prize game)...this helps the people stay there through the end by putting a prize game last :-) We had a Penguin Race (for Henry's character). First we divided into two groups (because we had older and younger kids there). The younger kids went first. We tied their legs with yarn (or use rope ribbon whatever) around their ankles and they had to waddle like a penguin to the finish line with their hands at their sides. The person who won got a prize (anything simple from the Dollar store works great for both sets of kids...we however bought $5.00 gifts from WalMart for each group to be a little nicer rewards). Then the second group went. It was a blast as well. COSTUMES: everyone just came in comfy play clothes...again the theme was "comfortable" and the focus was on eachother and having a really genuinely fun time! PARTY SNACKS: We had healthy snacks like a vegetable tray consisting of carrots broccoli cauliflower etc. Then another tray of fruit...grapes apples etcetera. We had Sun Chips of various flavors and Capri Sun (kids love this because it is just their size and is for the most part mess-free). And lastly some pizza from the Bakery at WalMart (the take and bake kind) about $5. CAKE: I love baking and made a homemade cake. I bought one cake mix (Betty Crocker for about a dollar) frosting (WHIPPEDE white vanilla...whipped is really nice to spread and isn't too sweet) food coloring of different colors and candles. I made the cake in a 9in round pan a 7in round pan and the rest in a 12-mini-cupcake pan. When all that was done cooking and cooled I used the 9in round as the body of Oswald. I lined the 12 mini cupcakes up at the base of "Oswald" to look like legs. Then with the 7in round I cut out a 5in (diameter) circle from the middle of it to be a balloon and the "outer ring" was cut in half and put together from the balloon to Oswald to look like the balloon string that Oswald was holding. I mixed up two separate frosting colors in two separate bowls (pink....for the balloon and blue...for oswald). Since the cake was chocolate I didn't color the "black" balloon string. I generously covered the cake with frosting overflowing down over the cupcakes (so there was no interruption between Oswald and his legs) and covered the balloon. Then I used the food coloring gel to make two eyes and mouth on Oswald and his famous hat to the side. I put four candles in the cake balloon and wrote Happy 4th Birthday ___________ (child's name) on the balloon. PARTY FAVORS: we sent home a bag filled with all sorts of boys and girls "goodies" (from the Dollar store) to each kid gender appropriate. And made sure to get out Thank You cards as soon as possible for the gifts (which we kept track of during opening them). This OSWALD party turned out really well...I would recommend it if you want a neutral party appropriate for boys and girls and older kids as well as younger kids. Oswald is also a wholesome character which can be harder to find these days with the gap from toddler party stuff to 8 or 10 year old party stuff with not much in-between. Plus it was a different not overly-done party theme as unique as or beautiful daughter! "