Posts Tagged ‘themed birthdays’

Cowboy Birthday

Monday, March 5th, 2018


My son Nathaniel had a fun cowboy birthday theme. His favorite thing to do as a 6-year-old was to shoot off caps guns, wear a cowboy hat, and watch The Lone Ranger. Because of his love for westerns, he even wrote a story that was a cowboy western, with the main character and the villain having a shootout showdown at the end of the story. This is one of the perks of homeschooling. His writing assignments can actually coincide with what he is excited about.

How to Make a Paper Cowboy Vest Craft

For his birthday party, we had the kids make a paper cowboy vest. First you will need some paper bags from the grocery store.We cut them down the middle until we came to the hole for the head, which we also cut out beforehand. Then we painted the vests with tempera paint. We wanted the painted vests to be ready to thread with twine during the party.


On the day of the party, the kids cut a fringe on the bottom of their vest. They also used a hole punch to punch holes on the two sides of the vest down the front for the twine to go through. Depending on the age of the child, you might need to punch the holes for a 3-year-old, for example, so that you don’t end up with random holes.


Then the kids threaded the twine through the holes, making a knot on the bottom and the top on the back where it couldn’t be seen. We attached a sheriff badge to each cowboy vest. We got a package of these at a party supply store.


The kids loved how their cowboy vests turned out!

How to Make a Horse Cake


Making a horse cake isn’t too difficult. Just bake a rectangular chocolate cake, and shape it into a horse head. The triangle cut from the bottom of the neck will be used for the ear at the top of the cake. We frosted the cake with chocolate frosting and white frosting for the mane. We used black frosting gel to make the bridle and other details. A sweet tart was the eye.


We also found a horse piñata at a party store, which was perfect for this cowboy birthday theme! My son had a great time and smiled from ear to ear.

Army Tank Cake

Monday, January 16th, 2017


We created a fabulous tank cake to celebrate modern history. We lit it up with a sparkler in the barrel of the tank. It looked cool all lit up! This army party was perfect for my teen son’s birthday.

How to Make an Army Tank Cake

  1. We baked three rectangular cakes because we wanted the wheels to be the height of Oreo cookies. It depends what recipe you use for your cake, but we used two regular cake mixes for the base of the tank, stacking them after they were cooled off. Then we cut a square out of the third cake and placed it on the top of the tank.
  2. We frosted the whole thing with chocolate frosting. I’m sure we used at least two tubs of frosting from the grocery store. Don’t scrimp on the frosting.
  3. We placed Fruit Roll-ups along the sides of the tank cake, to make the tracks. Then the Oreo cookies were placed on both sides, on the edge. The barrel was a Pirouette. I wanted to be able to stick a sparkler into the barrel, which is why we didn’t use a Twix chocolate bar like we originally brainstormed. If you are not lighting the barrel with a sparkler, you could easily use a Twix chocolate bar.


How to Create a Centerpiece for an Army Party

I threw down a black bed sheet onto the table and sprinkled some sand in the middle of the table. I placed a LEGO tank in the sand, and I sprinkled toy soldiers around like confetti. For more instructions on how to make this centerpiece, watch my tutorial: LEGO Tanks of World War II.


Grenade Balloons for Decorations

We decorated the room with grenade balloons, which I must say were extremely difficult to blow up. That’s because they were water balloons! If you are celebrating this army party in the summer, you could have outdoor activities involving grenade water balloons.

You can have your guests dress in camouflage if you want to make the experience even more authentic.


Tank Piñata

We also found a tank piñata, which was the reason my son chose this theme. (He saw this tank piñata hanging at the party store and wanted it.) Whacking a tank is very satisfying, especially for boys, making this a fun activity to end this army party!


For more hands-on activities for modern history, check out my modern history unit study!

Old-Fashioned Movie Birthday

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2016


If you want to throw an old-fashioned movie birthday party, you have come to the right place! I will show you how to make a cake in the shape of an old movie camera. I will also tell you about some activities you can do for a movie party, besides watching a movie!

How to make an old-fashioned movie camera cake:

Let’s start with the cake. You will need to bake three cakes; the first two will be rectangle cakes, and the third will be divided between two circle pans. You will assemble the pieces this way:


I trimmed the sides of the first rectangle cake for the center section of the cake. I cut the bottom and side trapezoids from the other rectangle cake. (You can eat the cake leftovers while you work!)

I wanted the circles on the top of the cake to be smaller than a cake pan, so I used a round plastic container as a cookie cutter.


The finished cake is at the top of this post. I found some large letter stickers at a hobby supply store, and I stuck them down on white card stock paper and taped them to toothpicks before stabbing them into the cake.

Decorations for a movie party:


You can tape curtains to the sides of your television. We used the curtains from our puppet theater, but you can just hang some cloth and tie the sides. No sewing is required. I found a movie gadget that opens and closes for the scenes being filmed. I bought it at a party supply store. We used it for the skits described in the activity below.


I also found some Hollywood decorations at a party supply store, which I hung from the chandelier, but you could just cut out a silver star out of card stock paper. I had silver star confetti and silver streamers. I placed a black bed sheet on the table, and the silver streamers ran down the sides. A camera was placed in the middle of the table on top of the confetti.

Movie party activities:


Grab a basket or dress-up box and place different hats, scarves, glasses, and other accessories into it. (We found some stick-on moustaches at a costume shop!) The kids can break into teams and practice a fun skit with the materials in the basket. Then they can present it to the audience. You can film the skits.


During the second half of the party, we watched an outdoor movie. If you don’t have a projector, you can watch the movie indoors on your television. We hung a sheet outside and used the projector from my speaking engagements, and we watched “The Princess Bride” outside. We had a great time at our old fashioned movie birthday party!

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