Big Boo’s 4th birthday party was last weekend and despite all my stressing (I’m not a natural hostess) all the prep work paid off and we ended up with a really relaxed, enjoyable celebration. Last year’s dino party was a military procedure planned to the last minute with a whole host of games. It worked well but was hard work for me as I had to do lots of running around and organising of children. This year we prepped lots of activities that the children could do themselves and the plan was to intersperse them between free playing. Luck was with us and the sun came out so the children had free run of the house and garden.
The first activity was a fossil excavation in the ‘sand pit’ (which was actually a paddling pool filled with sand). Inspired by some pinterest searching I bought a T-Rex skeleton mould from ebay and filled it with plaster of paris. Then all I had to do was bury the ‘fossils’ just before visitors arrived and place some paintbrushes on top of the sand. Once our guests had all appeareWei sent them down to the garden to do some palaentological excavation work. Big Boo gave a huge exclamation of “WOW” when he uncovered the tail, and the they laid the pieces out on the grass to (almost!) create the T-Rex once they found them all. They then buried and uncovered them again, and again and again, 4 or 5 times before they got bored.
After some more sand play we got busy cracking open the dinosaur eggs that the children made earlier in the week. I’ve got a tutorial here for making them. The only disappointment here was that the children wanted to crack open more than we had, they enjoyed this a lot.
Due to the mid afternoon timing of the party I stuck to nibbles (monster munch a.k.a dinosaur footprints and bread sticks a.k.a dino bones) and sweet treats. The dinosaur nest cakes at the top of the picture were made with lots of help from Little Boo and you will find a tutorial here. The gingerbread fossil biscuits were made with these great cutters from amazon. They were pricey but we will use them with play dough too. Finally the cupcakes were piped with green grass buttercream icing and topped with a mini plastic dinosaur.
We finished with this piñata activity. These dinosaur eggs did take a few days to make (with stops and starts obviously!) but did end up looking great and were a hit (ha ha!). The children did need a little help to get started but they were all happy to become the baby dinosaurs hatching from the eggs by donning their masks.
Birthday wishes were sung as the candles were lit on the volcano cake and a “wow” even escaped from one little boy’s lips as the sparkler in the centre of it started to spark.
The children went home with their piñata dinosaur masks and a little thank you bag with some ‘dinosaur eggs’ (mini eggs) and a couple of toy dinosaurs, and we rounded the event off with a beer (my husband) and a Pimms (myself!) – perfect!
If you are planning a dino event for your little one, I would really recommend any of these activities, and you can find links to tutorials to do the activities above or below: