Oliver's Party

Sunday, June 15, 2014
Nothing inspires you to get a place cleaned up like having a party. Since we moved into the house and had the barn sheet rocked, we haven't really touched it since. The kids go in to play and the race karts and cars are housed in there, but it was generally a mess.

When we started making plans for Oliver's 5th birthday, it only made sense to have the party at the house. We finally had the space, why not use it. We ordered shelves and storage for the barn to store tools and all the other items necessarily kept in a garage. We're super-lucky to have a "party" barn so we wanted it to be presentable and usable for 4 and 5 year olds.

We scheduled Oliver's race car party on June 13 at 4 p.m. We don't really like weekend birthday parties because it interrupts the typical weekend day and we decided late afternoon so big sister, Chloe, could attend.
Oliver's invite. I had these made on Etsy. There are lots of cute race car invites you can have customized and print out. Oddly enough, the shop I ordered these from is no longer on Etsy.

But, as is typical of the weather in the northeast in late spring, rain was fore casted. Not just sprinkles, but heavy rain forcing us to alter some plans. The original plan was to have a really large interactive bounce house but with rain and thunder in the forecast, we opted to rent a simple and much smaller bounce house that would fit in the barn.

I ordered much of the party decorations on-line. The big box party store had some race car themed items but they were all Hot Wheels related. I wanted more generic race themed items and ordered it from two different online retailers.

Above: The inside set up. We raised the two garage doors into the barn. We had a table for the kids to eat at on the left, the bounce house in the back of the barn and I made a little raceway with cones and balloons for the kids to drive three R/C cars. The racetrack design lasted about 15 seconds after the kids arrived.

Above: Matt before the party started in front of the refreshment table. I had a large drink dispenser filled with lemonade and two tubs of water, sodas and juice boxes. It was hot and humid when the party started and we went through lots of drinks. The balloons on the floors were blown up and had Hot Wheels cars in them for the kids to pop and get a car. Cute idea and the kids liked it...a little too much. It sent them on a frenzy of popping all the other balloons at the party (hence the  racetrack's demise).
Playing with the R/C cars.

The bounce house was the BIG hit, but the kids often switched between the trampoline and the bounce house. If the girls at the party were in the bounce house, the boys were on the trampoline and vice versa.
The play set wasn't as popular. We tried to hide the ride on toys but they were "discovered" and caused a little ruckus amongst the kids. We had to step in and put the ride-on toys away.
Oliver had first swing at the pinata.
The pinata was also a big hit (literally) and all the kids loved having a go. I found this race car pinata online and it was perfect.

Big sister Chloe wanted to give it a whack too.
We had pizza and cake.

Oliver's cake was chocolate with chocolate pudding filling.

The party was fun and the rain held off until the last few minutes of the party. Oliver declared it "the best birthday ever!" in his long history of birthdays and that's good enough for me.

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