Bethany in Maple Park IL USA
Moving Party I came up with this idea for my 5 year old niece as a way to say good bye to her friends when she was moving across the country. Start off with invitations made out of brown paper bags, cut out a rectangle to be folded in half, making sure it will fit in an envelope. Fold in half, crinkle for added affect,on the front, with a black sharpie write "(Child's name)'s party" and "fragile", on the inside include the party details, I always print them off on the computer & double stick them for ease. For this party use "Let's get moving...(Child's name)'s leaving!! Time to ship her/him off with a smile!! Shipping date, Time, Duration, & Confirmation Number. Decorations were extremely easy, make sure that the moving boxes are stacked decoratively & safely labels out would add to it. Use newspaper to cut streamers, make newspaper hats, & bubble wrap bows. Put up a yard sign that says "(Destination) or Bust!" Upon arrival have a card table set up with the hats, an address book, & copies of your new address. Also a stretched canvas painted in the new room color with white circles, labeled with friend's names underneith, put washable markers next to the canvas & when people come in they can write or draw a memory or thought for the child to carry on to his/her new home. In the center I wrote "A friend stays with you in spirit". For the food, make it simple to stay within the theme, pizza & juiceboxes. For the cake I tried to stay within the theme by using small 3\*3 cardboard boxes to serve cupcakes. Just be sure to use new boxes that are clean, I found white cake boxes on-line. Games were easy to set up and cheap! Give each child an egg (do this one outside or on plastic!) one piece of newspaper, and 15 seconds to wrap up their egg, then we drop them to see which one made it through the "move". The only thing with this game was we weren't sure how many would win so giving everyone a prize for playingis easier. Another game was to have teams try to pack a box as fast & as neatly as they could. Each team has a box the same size along with a uniform size item i.e. blocks or cans then give them 30 seconds to fill up the box but it has to close too. The team with the highest count wins, if there is a tie, go on the neatest. Now that the fragile items are wrapped, and packed, it was time to back up the moving truck to load it up. Have a powerwheels/ or bike set up on the driveway, decorated as a moving truck, with cones lined up behind it. Each child has a turn to see who could back up the fastest, & if you hit a cone there's a 2 second penalty. Instead of making the kids load up the "moving van", set up the garage as "Movingland" make tunnels out of boxes and add things for more fun. We had a "sunroof" in one box, bubblewrap & tape balls on the floor of another. Bugs & spiders would be great too, as long as it's not scary for the kids. To try and teach children distance make one end of the tunnels the old and the other the new address, have one child at each end,then have them race to the middle! Everyone leaves with a goodie "box", we found these on line for about $.04 a piece. Fill the inside with 2 stamps, 2 envelopes, 4 pieces of stationary (make on the computer 1 piece of colored paper, split into 4 by a border & cut), a personalized pencil with "(child's name)'s friend" found at oriental trading for $3.95/24 and a freindship bracelet found at oriental trading for $2.95/12. Make sure to take pictures of the guest of honor with each friend to include with the thank you notes later.