It was Aristotle’s birthday recently. We had it at the same jungle gym as we did for Hercules.
One of the ironies of being a parent is that you find yourself breaking every promise you made before you had children. One of those promises was – no birthday parties at jungle gyms. Now both boys have had one at a jungle gym. I blame Daddy for being the weak link because I held fast through all of Aristotle’s pleadings (for many friends from school had birthday parties at jungle gyms so he was desperate to have one, too). I think it was because Hercules missed out on a celebration for his first and second birthdays – the first because Daddy’s grandma had just passed away and we were in mourning; the second because Hercules fell sick. So when Hercules was turning 3, Daddy decided to make up for it with a special do at a jungle gym. And since Hercules got one at a jungle gym, we had to be fair to Aristotle and have his at a jungle gym, too. So that’s the long of the short on how we ended up with jungle gym birthday parties for the boys…
The plan is for this to be the first and last, but I have learned as a parent – never say “never”…
So I asked Aristotle what theme he wanted for his party and he said: Jurassic Park. So dinosaurs it was. Without going overboard, here are some of the elements we came up with to give the party that “Jurassic” feeling:
“Our little paleontologist will set out on an expedition [insert date, time and venue]. Please join him on this adventure to celebrate his [insert birth age] birthday.”
The concept was a dinosaur survival kit which included:
- dinosaur repellent (which is really bubble solution)
- dinosaur coprolite (in other words, fossilised dino poop – which is really a box of raisins)
- dinosaur fossil fuel (which is really a packet of Milo drink)
- play dough and dinosaur mould
- dinosaur toy
- chocolate crispy with dinosaur picture
- birthday balloon
Some of the party bags had different contents because we had a few late RSVPs.
If you have the budget for it, you can even buy dinosaur-themed party bags instead of making your own.
There are also quite a lot of other “dinosaur” themed party favours you can include in a party bag for dinosaurs if you have a bit of time to look around for them or order them online:
- Dinosaur Stamps
- Dinosaur Bubble Bottles (which simplifies the packaging process so you don’t have to print out your own labels)
- Dinosaur Rubber Duckies
- Dinosaur Tattoos
- Dinosaur Masks
- Inflatable Dinosaurs
- Dinosaur Finger Puppets
- Dinosaur Sticker Books
- Dinosaur Eggs with Toy inside
- Pass the Dinosaur Egg (which is really “pass the parcel”) with dinosaur books marks as mini prizes
- Dinosaur Statues (which is really “musical statues”)
There were other games that we contemplated, such as the dinosaur piñata and pin the head on the dinosaur, but since the kids were young, I figured we should keep the games short and sweet so we didn’t lose their attention.
Our party MC was T-Rex (my SIL who kindly dressed up in a dino costume for the kids when I went to her in tears because I didn’t have an MC). She did such a fantastic job, she was almost hired on the spot for another birthday party.
When it comes to parties for little kids, a good MC can be the difference between a party success or flop.
We managed to find some dino music from Youtube, including some of our favourites:
- I am a Paleontologist – They Might Be Giants
- Dinosaur Trains Theme Song
- T-Rex – Dinosaur Train
- Dinosaur ABCs – Dinosaur Train
- Hungry Herbivore – Dinosaur Train
- Dinosaur Dance
- Dinosaur Song
- Perry the Parasaurolophus – David Cagle
- Quetzalcoatlus – David Cagle
Hercules’ new favourite song to sing is now Dinosaur Dance.
What’s a birthday without the cake? Our resident chef made this beautiful Jurassic Park Theme cake complete with chocolate chip dinosaur eggs (which were simply scrumptious!) for our birthday boy:
If you aren’t lucky enough to have a chef for a relative, some budget alternatives might be:
- dinosaur candles with a regular cake
- dinosaur cupcake sleeves and cupcake picks, or just use this dinosaur cupcake kit
- dinosaur party plates, napkins, and cups
It was a lot of fun planning for the party. Execution, on the other hand, is clearly not my forte. Nevertheless, the kids did not notice the hiccups and appear to have had a great time. Well, you can’t really go too far wrong with a party at a jungle gym when you have a bunch of 6 year olds.