Don’t tell Levi, but his birthday party this past Sunday was a very last-minute affair.
Between the stress and chaos of moving, his fourth birthday sort of snuck up on me. And so, Paperless Post invitations were emailed to a small group of family and friends just two weeks before the big day, while the actual location of his outdoor celebration wasn’t confirmed until two days prior.
Thank goodness my parents’ out-of-town family friends offered us their backyard, otherwise I would’ve eeny-meeny-miny-moe’d a playground on the parks and recreation website that, most likely, wouldn’t have had any bathrooms.
I’m also grateful that Seedling happened to send me party supplies to try out at just the right time. Their Jungle Safari decorations, crafts, and party favors inspired an afternoon of exploration and creativity with minimal effort on my part.
Here’s how Levi’s fourth birthday party came together at the last minute:
Saturday afternoon: My mother-in-law and I drove to Costco, where I bought plastic utensils, snacks, and bottled water and ordered the cake and pizza for Sunday pick up. Then we stopped at Party City and found green plates and leopard-print napkins that perfectly coordinated with the Jungle Safari theme.
Saturday night: After Levi and Asa were in bed, I went to Target for juice boxes (because we didn’t need 40 from Costco!). I thought playing with dirt would be a fun and outdoorsy Jungle Safari activity, so I drove over to A.C. Moore for plastic pots to decorate and to The Home Depot for soil and seeds.
Sunday morning: An hour before the party, Jordan and his mom were picking up the food from Costco and filling up the 36″ giant balloon from the Seedling decoration kit with helium at Party City.
Back at our family friends’ house, I was hanging garlands and pom poms from trees and arranging centerpieces with Seedling’s pre-assembled favor bags. Since there were only six children at the party, I made the quick decision to use the gems and plastic animals from the extra party favors for our outdoor scavenger hunt.
Party time! We kicked off Levi’s Jungle Safari birthday party with the craft kit from Seedling. Instead of making spyglasses, however, each kid made a pair of binoculars to use on our scavenger hunt. Whenever a treasure was found, one of the grown-ups would discreetly toss it back into the grass and leaves to keep the search going.
Back at the table, the kids colored their DIY pots, and after lunch, they helped fill them with potting soil and an assortment of random seeds. We started our big experiment, Seedling’s Dinosaur in a Volcano toy, right before we sang “Happy Birthday” and passed out cake. I’ve never seen kids less interested in birthday cake; they just wanted to watch the volcano explode!
And then the party was over. Two hours had passed, and the kids were hot, happy, and tired. The backyard, though simply decorated, still looked lovely, and we had plenty of leftover Costco cake to enjoy for days to come.
Build, imagine, play! Seedling helps bring kids’ ideas to life with beautifully designed, all-in-one projects that encourage children to follow their own creative initiative. Enjoy 30% off at Seedling when you choose your own adventure using the code Seedling30. Offer valid one per customer; discount does not apply to past purchases, packaging, applicable taxes, or shipping and handling. Expires July 17, 2015.
This post is in partnership with Seedling, a company I admire and support. Thanks for supporting the brands that help me keep A Girl Named PJ up and running.