Thursday, May 7, 2015

Minecraft Birthday Party

Our Neck of the Woods is now pinnable!
If you see something you like, feel free to pin it!

I hate Minecraft. In all fairness, it's nothing personal. I really don't have anything against it except my kids are addicted to it. I guess it could be worse. They could be consumed with something more annoying like - well, off hand, I can't think of anything. But the point is, they love Minecraft. As do most kids people over the age of four who know how to turn on a computer or iPad. I will say this - it's somewhat creative. Brack builds businesses and hotels and bridges, and is becoming quite the engineer/architect! So, I guess I'll let it slide for now. After all - a fully charged iPad battery only lasts what? Four hours or so? They have to come up for air sometime!

Brack's favorite holiday is his birthday. He starts talking about it and planning his next party the day after his last party. Yep. We finally made a rule that he couldn't talk about it until January 1. That gave us plenty of time to recover from the last party before planning the next! He decided he wanted to have a Minecraft party this year, so I got busy scouring Pinterest and found lots of stuff. There's a lot out there, and it gave me lots of good ideas, but I wanted his party to be original. I combined some ideas I found online with some of my own, and I think it turned out just right!


I found the invitation on Etsy. It was a free download! I was able to have 20 copies printed for less than $5 at my local copy shop. Can't beat it with a stick. Postage ended up being more than the invites, but don't get me started...


I don't know much about Minecraft, but I do know that everything is formed using blocks. And there's a lot of green and black. I also know that the kids create and save lots of different "worlds". That was all I needed to design Brack's Minecraft World! (I love my chalkboards. This one is slate and I thought it was the perfect signage for my tablescape. It came from Hobby Lobby last year, but I think they still have them. And, they go on sale 50% off every couple of weeks!)


Jewell was a big help and decorated the china hutch and chandelier with crepe paper and balloons.

Apparently my UN-professional photographer (that would be ME!) didn't get a full shot of the table, so I'll show you each side separately.


The party was late afternoon, so I wanted to feed my guests, but I kept the menu REALLY simple. We had hot dogs, chips and dip, cupcakes and lemonade. Using my extremely limited knowledge, I renamed the food to represent elements of the Minecraft game. We had "dynamite dogs" (hot dogs are shaped like sticks of dynamite - get it?) and "cake blocks" on one side of the table. I had regular length hot dogs which I placed in a copper-colored container I already had, and we also served mini hot dogs which were corralled in a black wire basket. (Sometimes you can find the mini hot dogs at places like Sam's Club, but we ordered our's through the cafeteria at Faulkner.)

You can also see in the picture above that I used a black tablecloth (purchased for our Halloween party) and placed some green cloth napkins that I already had down the middle for a splash of color. I picked up black square plates and green and black napkins at Dollar Tree. Square building blocks, square plates...see where I'm going with this?


On the other side of the table you can see "iron ore chips" and "party dip potion". Pretty creative, huh? I thought so! 

Part of the tablescape was a Minecraft papercrafting set I found at Toys R Us for $15. You can find it and the other sets here. Brack absolutely loved it, and he helped me put it all together. I had to convince him to quit playing with it so I could set the table! The set is made of sturdy cardboard and he has enjoyed playing with it along with his Minecraft Legos and action figures. Like I've said before, I don't mind spending a little money on decorations when they can be used again.

I placed the food containers on the table early that morning and then Jewell set up the mine track and blocks around it. The cupcakes are on two black mini Wilton cupcake stands. I picked these up after Halloween several years ago for 75% off. They were $2.50 each. Go me! The chips were in a black wire basket lined with another green napkin. I have a million of the square glass containers I used for the onions. They came from Dollar Tree and I use them for everything from condiment containers to holding cotton balls in my bathroom. More mini chalkboard stands from Hobby Lobby round out the decoration. I got these half price (.79 - .99 cents each) and use them all the time.


The "citrus elixir" (lemonade) was served on the island. Black and green cups came from Dollar Tree as well. I also had a big Gatorade dispenser on the deck along with disposable paper cups for the kids to wet their whistle while they played outside.


Except the Minecraft papercrafting set and the paper goods and food, everything came from my stash. No extra expense! 

I used to plan all kinds of party games, but I have learned that the kids would rather just run around and find something to do! So now, we just let them go. They found plenty of things to keep themselves occupied.


Some (too many at one time!) played on the trampoline.


Several of the girls had made their way to the front pasture to the big tree swing.
The boys stormed them with Nerf guns. You can imagine what happened next!


Not quite sure who Brack is supposed to be,
but here he is swinging off the jungle gym with shades and a Nerf gun!


It works out beautifully that most of our kids' friends have siblings the same age as ours,
so whether it is a party for Jewell or Brack, the other always has friends to hang out with!

After playing outside for about an hour,
I called them inside to sing "Happy Birthday" to Brack and fix their plates.


Brack loved his Minecraft party and enjoyed having his cousins, friends from church, taekwondo and homeschool co-op, all together to celebrate his birthday.


It's hard to believe my baby is 10.
But they grow whether we like it or not!
So the only thing to do is...celebrate!

Soon I'll share with you Brack's birthday dinner...

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I'm so glad you stopped by my neck of the woods!
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