Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Dacian is 7! (Beware of the long post)

My little big boy... Recently I remembered a funny experience when D was little and said hilarious things on a daily basis. I didn't write them down just like I seem to not write down the funny things Lavi is saying. (she's at the funny stage).

I had to rush Dacian to the bathroom at a grocery store. I think he was about 3 years old. I sit him on the potty and we hear another person in the stall next door. He says to me: "Mommy, is that a bad guy?" We were of course in the ladies restroom. The lady in the next stall bursts out laughing. "No, sweetie, she's a goo' guy," I said.  Dacian saw the whole world as goo' (good) guys and bad guys. Of course, now he's all growedz up and I find myself missing the goo' and bad guys conversations. I know it's cliche to say time goes by oh so fast but I sit down and look at him and I can hardly remember him as a toddler or baby. He's changed so much. He's lost three teeth so far. He's still got a little boy's innocence which I adore but I also know it's also on the go. And the sad part to me is knowing Lavi's fun stage will also pass so I am totally soaking her all up.
 I know one thing for sure, I don't really know how I'll handle the teenager-hood  Scared to death of that. I guess I have to brace myself and go for the ride that most parents also have to make at some point. I do realize it's not that close but not that far away either.
I can understand why many women have many kids, I bet they miss the baby stage, toddler stage, etc and can't imagine themselves without that fun in their lives. It's tempting but then again, not in the cards for us and I feel quite at peace with it.

But the reason why I'm writing again is to put the fun pictures of the most recent birthday party and document all the fun we've had. I'm also on spring break so I have no excuse for not having time to write. 

Last time I did a big birthday party for D. I said I wouldn't do another big on until he turned 8. Well, I realized that this year would be the perfect year for a fun party and I didn't want to wait. Crazy me, huh?

I started planning early, rented the cabana where my parents live and everything started to come together quite nicely. I again had tons of help. My mom made the boys jedi vests and helped braid the Leia buns.

Dacian loves Star Wars and I saw cute pictures of a jedi party on the internet and started imagining how cute it would be do to that for Dacian. I realized that the older he gets he won't want some silly themed party. I am sure when he's older he'll just have a few friends over going out to a movie or something.

Shane made the invite which was amazing, I must say. It's nice to have a husband who is a pro with Photoshop. He also made all the signs for the party, for each challenge. Hopefully I can post them here to show you all.

We had amazing weather. The best since Dacian's has been born at this time of the year. The kids were in short sleeves. As the kids arrived, they had to sign in for Padawan Registration and each got a card that had spots to put a star sticker for each challenge completed. After all challenges they would become certified Jedi's.

They also suited up after "registration".  See table with vests.
Boys wore the brown felt vests and girls had Leia buns.These were their gifts when they left.  We had a total of 17 kids and we separated them in groups of 4-5. That way they were more easily managed. Most of the kids were boys except for girl cousins and two other good girl friends. :) 

The challenges were:

Create your light saber using pool noodles. I was so grateful my brother in law, Scott manned the table and helped the kids decorate their sabers with duct tape. After they made their sabers they went ahead to train on how to use them on the hill. For sure a favorite challenge.

Lava Walk- My sister in law, Noel helped with this one.

Save Princess Leia- I supervised this one. Little picture of Leia placed inside of black balloons (death star). Kids had to sit on the balloons to pop them and save Leia. The balloons were a challenge to pop and I caught kids trying to pop the balloons with a chair leg. :)

Laser tag challenge- Shane manned this one and explained to all the little kids some story and then had the kids go fight it out on the lawn. The kids loved running around with laser tags. Shane has quite a few of them and is glad to use them any chance he gets.

Kill the death star- I had asked my brother in law, Michael from Walla Walla to bring his cool bubble machine. I had seen on FB a video he posted of the machine filling the bubbles with smoke and I thought it would be cool to have the kids pop the balloons with their foam sabers. It was indeed a big hit. It was fun to see their reaction to these smoke filled balloons. This and the Leia challenges were inside so I was there for both. 

The last challenge was to Face your fears. In a little hallway behind the main room, where the restrooms were located, Michael placed his strobe, they turned all the lights off and my 12 year old niece, Alexis dressed up as Darth Vader and Shane dressed up as Darth Maul came from each of the restrooms and "fought" the kids. Of course the kids won and wounded both bad guys. Some kids were too afraid to go in and that was just fine of course.

My husband had a blast and came out of there super sweaty. :)

Most of the decorations were brought up from Walla Walla and also my brother in law brought his dj equipment, lights, mic for a party later that night since we had the cabana 'till midnight. They had spring break that week and it was nice to have them come up and spend a few days with us. Many thanks go out to them for all their help and work so we could all have so much fun.

Food wise- I got smart and saw that food is rarely eaten by kids- either they are too picky or they just want to play so I only had cake and ice cream. My mom made the Millenium Falcon cake (total surprise for me) and I made two Pit of Carkoon cakes.  It was the easiest to make. I don't even know which one of the movies this nasty creature appears but trust me Dacian and I am sure quite a few kids knew as well. We had Yoda soda (lime sherbet with sprite), light sabers (pretzel rods dipped in different colored chocolate). Saw these idea on Pinterest of course, where else? Dacian screamed in the middle of cake eating that this was the best party ever!!!! Thank you son, I think I would've cried had you not said that. :)

 After cake, kids were called one by one (cool, celebratory Star Wars music included) and were awarded their Jedi certificates. The kids thought they were in heaven I think. It was so cute to see their faces. 

I got several emails from different parents thanking me for inviting the kids to such a fun party, that their kids won't stop talking about it, etc. I was of course hoping the kids had a lot of fun and I think we achieved that.

While waiting for all parents to come the kids fought on the grass, in the SUN with their foam sabers.

Unfortunately we ran out of time to open presents in front of everyone. Since we had so many kids it would've taken us another 30 min for that so we just opened them with just our family later. Kind of lame of us but I thought it's better than to force people to stay there late. He got way too many presents, almost an embarrassing amount. Thank you, everyone! He built all the legos in a day and there were lots of sets. He is absolutely crazy about building stuff. He didn't want to go to bed because he didn't finish making his stuff.

Grandma and Grandpa Stringam

I think for the most part this was the party. If ever I am to do such an intricate party I learned my lesson and will invite less kids. It was a little chaotic at times due to some challenges that lasted a short time so there was a little waiting to get to the next challenge.

I am grateful though for how nice and well mannered they all were. Dacian is such a friendly kid and has kept in contact with some preschool and kindi friends, and of course we invited church and school friends plus cousins.

I am grateful for my mom and dad and all their help, for my awesome husband and all his work on all the signs and his party help and for all the aunts and uncles, the other grandparents and an awesome neighbor who made this day for sure memorable.

And believe it or not, we had a family pot luck pre Easter dinner after that and a dance at 7 pm. Happily and surprisingly many people I invited came and we had a blast. We had some Romanian friends come and we danced on some awesome Romanian music.

And to top it all off the next day it was Easter. But that is for sure for another post. If you read until the end I truly congratulate you.

Please excuse any and every spelling mistakes I may have. I am way too tired to re read this thing again. Will come back to fix my mistakes.

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