Monday, 23 March 2009
When it comes to BOYS of all ages, action parties are the way to go. No matter the theme or location, if there’s a good round of games (and fun food), your monkeys will go bananas. Sorry girls––these GREAT ideas on decorating, food and a whole lotta action––are for the boys.
Believe it or not, having a theme makes parties a whole lot easier to coordinate. Your child may have already chosen one (superheros, pirates, etc) but if you have carte blanche, think outside the square and use squares––or triangles or circles, as your theme. Color is also a simple idea––blue, green, yellow––are all red-hot for boys, or even choose a favorite candy, like jellybeans. Using your child’s initial is fun––you can plaster it on everything from the invitations to the cake, for a cute, unified look.
Boys aren’t big on how things look, so prepping your party space should be easy. Paper chains are a great way to add color and festivity.
Cut strips (width-ways) from sheets of colored A4 paper and staple them together into conjoining loops. Forget about bunching balloons – leave them loose all over the floor for boys to kick and tumble with. Making signs out of letter cut-outs is an effortless way to make a party look fresh and fun. Print large letter outlines onto colored A4 paper and cut them out, then stick to walls and windows.
Again, think thematically. For a Monkey party, think bananas on popsicle sticks dipped in chocolate; for Outer Space––pop rocks candy sprinkled on cupcakes. Remember, boys don’t eat much at parties––they’re far too busy leaping in the air.
Chicken nuggets, mini sausages, cheese sticks and fruit pieces all go down a treat, as do simple bowls of chips and candy. For the easiest birthday cakes ever, ask for an undecorated cake at the local bakery––just iced or covered in shaved chocolate. Wipe down a thematic item (Pokemon figures, a toy horse or wooden train) with sterilizing wipes and plant it on top for a gorgeous cake made super-simple.
Here is where the fun really begins. Grab yourself a whistle or a loud-voiced dad, and run your wee men ragged. They’ll love it!
Toilet Paper Tumble
Group boys into two and have them sit with their backs together. Have a third person wrap the kids around their torsos and arms with toilet paper, fast, until the whole roll is used up (leave their hands free). The first pair of boys who can stand up after wrapping, wins (tip: they should use their legs to push their backs into each other). When the game is over, the boys should try to wriggle out of the paper (with the help of a third party) and then they must shred their toilet paper into a kajillion pieces and throw it all over the room. Don’t worry about the mess – if you let them do this, it will be the most talked-about party all year. Film it.
Give each boy a balloon, which they must keep afloat by kicking, batting or heading it upwards. If it touches the furniture or floor, or if they hold onto it in any way, they’re out.
Donuts on a String
Tie un-iced donuts to string and space them along a broom handle so they dangle at slightly varying heights. Line up the boys, hands behind backs, and have them attempt to eat their donut from the string first. Move the donuts around to make it harder… and no hands, please!
Set up relay teams of two or more, to complete a set course (around furniture, or to a point and back). Boys can either bat the balloon with their hands, nose it along the ground or waddle with it between their knees.
Make these games your own by blending them with your theme. Duck Duck Goose can be “Cow Cow Horse” at a cowboy party, Musical Statues can be “Mexican Jumping Beans” at a jellybean party, and Balloon Toss can be “Hot Potatoes” at a fireman party. Tie everything in with color, have lots of loud, blood-pumping music, and your boys party will be both simple––and simply smashing.
Let’s hear it for the boys!
First published, in part, in beijingkids magazine and on the beijingkids website. Photos by Tania McCartney and Luna Zhang.