Camping Party

dont-feed-the-bears

(archived from Mar. 10, 2013)

Time to blog while I can still feel the Dirt Cake inspired sugar rush coursing through my veins.

I’m not usually the creative birthday theme type of mom.  Actually I’m more the “what can we do to make the day special without me having to pay to entertain all your friends” type, but thanks to Pinterest, this year’s party was a hit.

set-up-camp

March in Texas is typically rainy, so I decided a camping theme would be perfect.  We could pitch the tent in the backyard if it was warm & dry, or upstairs in the gameroom if the forecast called for rain.  Gameroom it is.  I strung Christmas lights along the ceiling for stars, pitched the tent and filled it with sleeping bags, and hung a CAMP banner for the birthday boy.  Even made a “Don’t Feed the Bears” sign just because it was too adorable to pass up.

dont-feed-the-bears

The boys cooked hot dogs and s’mores over a campfire, then we each grabbed a flash light and headed out for a “flashlight hike” to the park.  This turned into quite an adventure, as our 3 teen boys plus one friend decided to run ahead and hide along the trail.  Then as I and 7 youngsters passed they jumped out to scare us.  About the time we arrived at our destination it started raining, so by the time we made it home everyone was soaked.  That’s one thing I love about boys, they’re always up for an adventure.

I must add a side note here that I was worried about the fact that my 7 year old step-daughter was with us this weekend.  I was afraid she’d pester the boys or in some way take away from the enjoyment of the party.  I even wondered if we should have her sleep over with grandparents.  Then I asked myself, “Would you be worried about this if all the siblings were 100% blood related and she lived here full time?  Or would you just let it flow?”  I quit worrying and let it flow.  She was great!  She got along fine with the boys and was fun as my partner on the hike.  I’m learning!

CampingParty_collage

All the kids enjoyed the picnic style dinner, complete with “Bug Juice” and “Lizard Spit” to drink.  After the hike and everybody was in warm dry jammies (one kid even had footie pajamas!) we lit candles on the Dirt Cake and opened gifts.  I’ll link the recipe because it was loved by all.  And it’s really good on graham crackers too.

DIRT CAKE RECIPE

Here are my favorite things about a camping themed party…

–       Disposable cups and plates fit the theme

–       $1.50 flashlights for hike go home with the guests

–       Dollar store plastic snakes and bugs also go home with the guests

–       Starting a party in the evening gives all day to get everything ready

–       Nighttime flashlight hike turns a simple walk to the park into an adventure

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