Monday, August 6, 2012

an Olympic birthday party

My sweet girl turned seven yesterday. Seven! After our trip to the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs earlier this summer, she decided she wanted to have an Olympics theme for her birthday party. And since her birthday falls right in the middle of the London Summer games this year, I thought this was a great idea. We brainstormed and searched the web, and came up with a party to remember.

As the "athletes" arrived, each was given their official team uniform, which I made with inexpensive white t-shirts, and printer transfer paper. I combined a clip-art of the olympic rings and the motto, "Go for the GOLD!" for a great take-home for the kids (beats a goodie bag!). Here's the girlie modeling hers:
 The party started with Opening Ceremonies. I downloaded the John William's recording of Summon the Heroes, which has all the music you would certainly recognize from the Olympics, and we played it as we said an athlete's oath, talked about the Olympics and had a torch relay.
 Then we went into a variety of track and field activities, ranging from water-balloon shot-put, to running races. (If you look close in this picture you can see the outdoor podium and rings garland, before we had to move everything indoors!)
We did a  javelin ring toss (taking an idea from Parent's magazine and adapting the rings to look like the Olympic symbol). This game was harder than it looked!
 The idea for the "hurdles" came from that same Parent's magazine article...
 At that point, we had several other activities planned (water gun target shooting, soccer ball relays, balloon table-tennis, etc) but storms were being forecast and the kids were getting hot!!! Flexibility is the name of the game and so we ditched the rest of the "land" games and headed for the "Aquatic Center".  We had diving contests full of canonballs and a few dives, lots of free play...
 ...and this was our "kayaking" relay, where they had to move the float across the pool without getting out of it.
 The birthday girl looks ready for her mama's sport, synchronized swimming!
 And then the storms came, we hustled everyone out of the pool, and indoors for their Olympic feast! I got some of the food ideas from the blog at A Small Snippet, including the popcorn-filled ice-cream-cone "torches" (I adapted my t-shirt idea from her's, as well). We had fruit, and veggies and dip, and corn-dogs. Kid food! The paper goods were picked up on clearance after July 4th...perfect! Go, Team U.S.A.!
 And here's the cake!  I had gotten a red, white, and blue funfetti cake mix around July 4th, and decorated the top for our theme.
 We gathered around the medal podium (moved indoors as well) for the Closing Ceremonies, where we recognized that each athlete is part of a team and a country, and so everyone got gold medals. We sang "Happy birthday", the girlie blew out her candles and we dished up cake!
 The kids then had fun taking turns posing on the podium while they all had cake and ice-cream. Here's my little guy looking like a winner:
A good time was had by all! This was a fun party to plan and the kids all seemed to have a great time. And now we are back to being glued to the T.V., watching the real games in London unfold. 

Happy birthday to my sweet seven-year-old girl!!!

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