My little Trevor isn’t so little anymore. Only 2 pounds lighter than his sister, who is 2 years older. And he’s catching up on her height, too. He turned 4 last week, which is still a bit surreal for me.
He loves the PBS show Word World, so it was a no-brainer that for his birthday party this year, that would be the theme. The possibilities with letters and animals is pretty endless. Which is good and bad! Sadly, Pinterest did not come to my rescue. I searched and searched for ideas, but nada. Apparently nobody has ever thought to host a Word World birthday party. OR nobody has ever thought to write about it. So, I’m going to!
First, start with your invitation. Duh. PBS’s online toolkit is awesome, with all the images, colors, backgrounds, characters, and logo readily available for download in high resolution format. SCORE. I played around with all of it, and this is what I came up with.
From there I started thinking about the food. Of course. I went with cupcakes because of their pre-packaged serving size, and eliminating the need for knives and forks. I searched for cupcake liners that matched the Word World colors and then bought primary food coloring to match them – this took a bit of math to come up with the correct number of dots per color to get the WW colors (and when I say “took a bit of math,” what I really mean is, “I had Paul figure it out.”)
I think he did pretty good.
At this point you can leave your cupcakes plain, simple, and in my humble opinion, pretty.
Or you can take it one step further and buy sugar decals from this place. They do all kinds of images.
Then I used my bucket of alphabet cookie cutters to make cookies.
…and then burned them. *sad trombone*
But I had a back-up plan, thank goodness. (This is where it helps to start prepping at 5:30 in the morning.)
I made little sandwiches with those same cookie cutters. I almost went with sunflower butter and jelly, but bologna won out because Trevor loves bologna. And so do I. Not gross. Hush!
And what would little sandwiches be without crackers sitting next to them, I ask? LONELY. And have you seen these alphabet Cheeze-Its?? PERFECT.
I got the table set with an orange cover, green plates, and purple napkins.
And then took an awful picture of it, because our dining room gets NO natural light. Booooooo.
Okay. So, what would a party be without games? Especially for a bunch of 4YO’s. Not occupied=chaos. Occupied=peace.
I used a cardboard box to cut a bunch of 7×7 squares, then printed out the letters in Trevor’s name (plus some other random ones), in the Word World colors, cut to size, which I then glued onto the squares. Easy peasy.
I used them for 3 games. So resourceful! *pats self on back*
Game #1 - Letter Scavenger Hunt. I hid the letters for Trevor’s name in our backyard. Then I showed the kids what Trevor’s name looks like, and what color the hidden letters are.
Whoever found the most letters, won a prize.
Game #2 – Musical Letters. I placed some random letters in a circle on the floor and each child stood on a letter. When the music played, they walked. When the music stopped, I called out a letter. Whomever was standing on that letter was out. The last one remaining won a prize.
Game #3 – Name that Letter! I chose a child to identify a certain letter, asked him/her to name an animal or thing that matched it, and then all the kids had to act it out. Lots of giggles with this one!
As important as the cupcakes are, I would say the goodie bags are a close second. I found some cute polka dot paper bags at Target – the colors were similar enough that I didn’t sweat it. I filled them with some random kid stuff like kazoos (sorry moms!), erasers, dot-to-dot, and straws. And then included some letter-related treats, like alphabet stamps and stickers.
I got some tiny cellophane bags for the stickers and included the letters of each child’s name. For the stamps, I chose to spell out some fun words, like…well…F.U.N. I also did W.O.W. and X.O.X. (for kiss/hug) and Y.A.Y., but you could also just include one stamp for the first letter of the child’s name.
And on the way out, they got a balloon. And fought over who got which color. I knew I should have stuck with all red!
My family and a bunch of close friends stayed long after the party ended, which I loved. Because, let’s face it, the party is as much about your kid as it is about you. I did notice nobody stayed to clean up, though… hm. ;-)
This morning at 6 am, we heard Trevor get up and go to the bathroom…and then go back to bed. My boy is growing up!