Tags: birthday, children's party, music
For my son’s 4th birthday, we threw a rock-themed party (aka Jason Fest 4) for Jason and his friends. I haven’t come across a lot of rock-themed children’s party resources online, so I’ve compiled my ideas and inspiration here.
The ‘Mod Your Guitar’ Station
As guests arrived, we directed them to the guitar station, where each child was given a personalized guitar and strap. I provided crayons and a large assortment of stickers, and the kids provided the creativity. Here are a few examples of their creations:
I found the pre-cut guitar shapes at Michaels, along with the ribbon. I attached the ribbon strap to the back of the guitars using coordinating duck tape. I also covered the table in neon rock-themed stretchy bracelets so the kids could also decorate themselves a bit too.
The stage was the focal point of the party, and our plan was to set it up in the backyard under a canopy. Thunderstorms on the day of the party quickly put an end to that, and we had to create the stage area in the playroom. The stage included: a keyboard (which we already had), large speakers, an amp and an assortment of musical toys (microphones, tambourines, etc.).
I was very lucky in creating the drum set because I happened to find a Rock Band drum set at a thrift store for under $10. (If you don’t have such good luck, you can also check out this post on making a toy drum set.) I spray painted the drums and attached a large hat box for the bass drum, which was also painted silver and decorated with a large 4 made out of vellum.
The speakers were largely inspired by a window display at Crewcuts. I started with two large square boxes and two rectangular ones. Using posterboard and a circle cutter, I cut out holes of varying sizes to create an iconic speaker look and then used spray glue to affix to the boxes.
I also found a great post on rock-themed furniture that provides inspiration for additional props that could be incorporated into your party decor.
Food and Favors
We chose a pretty bold color palette – orange and turquoise – and we incorporated it into everything, including the food. In fact, nearly all of the food was orange: buffalo wings, sweet potato chips, cheese, carrots, orange slices and guitar-shaped cheese sandwiches. Most of our guests were in the 2 to 6 year old range, so we kept the menu pretty simple.
I also made a cake and ordered cupcakes from a local cupcake shop:
You can’t tell in this photo, but I made a fondant cut-out of a guitar for the top of the cake using the same guitar icon that appears on the invites.
I ordered the cupcakes from What’s Up Cupcake and then topped them with cupcake toppers that I made using the paper and guitar design from the invitations.
There are lots of ways to go with favors and lots of inexpensive music-related toys that could be added to a goodies bag, but I think most people either throw these away or use them for a very short time, so I went a simpler route and packed bags of guitar-shaped sugar cookies. I made the cookies myself using this cookie cutter.
Tags: birthday, music
Just starting to think about Jason’s 4th birthday:
Tags: art, jason, jenna, music
Anything music themed is a huge hit in our house. Jason loves to hit the ‘hi-hats’ and the ‘bass drum.’ At three-years-old, he can name more musical instruments than his mother. For today’s art activity, I created collages of Jason and Jenna using recent photos and illustrations found online. I think they were a little hesitant to color on the pictures.
Tags: kansas city, music, they might be giants
No! No! No!
These are my my two-and-a-half-year-old son’s favorite words – yes, ‘words’ plural. The word no seems to be three words in his vocabulary:
1. No, I’ve considered the options and I’m certain that I don’t want what you’re suggesting.
2. No, I have no opinion on the matter but my first instinct was to say no. That’s my final answer.
3. No, I really mean yes but I don’t want to give you the benefit of knowing that I’m agreeing with you.
So it’s no surprise that the They Might Be Giant’s song, “No! No! No!,” is one of his current favorites.
Last weekend, we found out that They Might Be Giants were playing live in Kansas City (the home of grandma and grandpa), so we piled the whole family into the car and drove 8 hours so that Jason could see one of his favorite bands live.
Here’s what he looked like when TMBG (or ‘be giants’ as my son calls them) took the stage:
We had driven 8 hours the night before and endured nearly an entire day listening to live children’s music, so we weren’t going to let him sleep through the main event. It took awhile, but my husband finally woke him up and directed his attention to the stage. I’m not sure if he recognized the musicians. I realized during the show that to him, ‘be giants’ are the puppets he sees on the “Here Come the 1, 2, 3s” video. But he definitely recognized the songs, and, of course, they played his favorite, ‘No!, No!, No!”
Here’s what he looked like soon after waking up (my husband looking almost as sleepy):
And here are They Might Be Giants at the JiggleJam concert in Kansas City:
Tags: jason, music, the beatles
My son is obsessed with the Beatles song ‘Yellow Submarine.’ Every time he gets in the car, he asks “Yellow Submarine?” which sounds both like a question and a demand. As soon as it ends he says “more time,” and we listen to it one more time while he sits in the back with a goofy smile, strumming on an invisible guitar. I know where his love of guitars came from – he wants to be just like daddy! – but I’m not sure what it is about this particular song that really strikes a chord (so to speak).
In today’s mail, we received a package from grandma containing a Yellow Submarine t-shirt for Jason. I can’t wait to see the smile on his face when he walks around wearing his Yellow Submarine t-shirt and strumming his invisible guitar. I’m sure I’ll have an updated picture to post soon.