Posts tagged birthday party
What do you get when you take six adults and two kids, put them on a commuter train and head off to Boston for an adventure?
January 30th, 2013 | 5:57 AM
My husband and I take the commuter rail and then subway or bus to work, and my girls have always been infatuated with this form of transportation. The decision was unanimous to take our commute for a family day in the city, but only if their beloved Gaga would join in on the ride.
We are fortunate enough to live a mere two hours from my dad and stepmother, so when it came time to plan my dad’s 63rd birthday his request was simple: a day with his granddaughters. My daughters “Belly” and “Bear” were tasked with planning a birthday celebration worthy of their “Gaga.”
Despite a delay to our trip due to a poorly timed case of conjunctivitis (is there ever a good time?), we finally set out one blistering cold Saturday bound for the commuter rail station. Climbing up metal stairs to the commuter rail’s open bridge platform made for a blustery start, especially once the Amtrak train – that shares the commuter track – sped by. Both girls’ eyes widened to the size of saucers as they pondered exactly what they had gotten themselves into.
Belly, the oldest, has struggled with sensory processing disorder since birth so she was nervous about being on the train without seatbelts (my safety officer!), but Bear just smiled and stared the entire way. Thirty minutes later we arrived at South Station and made our way down the stairs to Boston’s Red Line so we could continue the trek to Harvard Square. Our destination: Boston’s The Curious George Store, the world’s only store dedicated to the curious little monkey who has enthralled my girls for as long as they can remember.
Once in the Curious George store, Belly decided she needed not one, but two, Curious George dolls (one Christmas, one birthday, fittingly enough) while Bear let all within earshot know she needed a new lunchbox because hers was “so old, Mommy.”No books requests. Much like the whirlwind in which we entered, our journey was complete. For those keeping track, after more than an hour commute we’d spend only 20 minutes in the store.
In total, the birthday celebration for Gaga lasted about six hours – half of which was spent aboard public transportation. Nonetheless, it couldn’t have been a better day or a more memorable one for all involved. Next up: traveling to New York to visit Aunt Stacey via Amtrak. Wish us luck!
Amanda Griffith is a wife to Patrick and mom to two young daughters, Belly and Bear (ages 5 and almost 4) and a one-year-old golden retriever Boden. When she’s not working as a PR professional she stays active chasing after her family and nurturing her not-so-secret addiction to Downton Abbey.
Cold, rainy weather doesn't have to ruin birthday celebrations with these fun, indoor children's party ideas!
January 25th, 2013 | 6:01 AM
Splashing in the pool, soaking up the sunshine and chowing down on barbecue are some pleasures that make kids’ summer birthday parties a breeze. But for those born any other time of the year, water parks are closed down, the air is a frigid temperature and soup partnered with cold medicine becomes a typical menu item. Don’t burn out on pizza and slumber parties, Mom. We’ve got winter-proof birthday party ideas that will not only be fun to attend, but fun to plan (any time of year)!
These cold weather friendly party ideas will keep the kiddos’ birthday spirits high, despite the conditions outside. Forget singing “It’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to“ another year - winter birthday parties will become something the kids will look forward to knowing you’ve got something new, innovative and exciting in the works!
A few of our favorite Girls’ Birthday Party ideas are chic, sassy and celebrate your little princess:
- Fancy Schmancy Tea Party: Invite guests to wear fancy hats and jewelry, or provide some costumes for dress-up and warm up with fruity tea or hot cocoa; serve mini sandwiches with your little lady’s favorites condiments and let your guests decorate cookies or cupcakes for dessert. Prefer to skip the mess? You can find elegant cupcakes from most bakeries.
- Pop Star Concert: If you aren’t near a local recording studio, send VIP rockstar invites with exclusive “Backstage Passes,” then make a playlist of her favorite songs to burn onto CDs for favors, set up a video camera and let them create their very own music video. Let them sing and dance to their heart’s content while the camera rolls and the tunes play, before decorating cupcakes with edible glitter – every pop star needs some sparkle!
Some of our favorite Boys’ Birthday Party ideas are playful, adventurous and celebrate your little dude:
- Indoor Campout: Let them build a fort with sheets and blankets. Send them on a scavenger hunt through the house for goodies and prizes, and improvise with a s’mores pie or cake. End the night telling stories and singing some tunes in front of the toasty fireplace!
- Science Laboratory: Turn your kitchen into a science lab with a couple science experiments of the birthday boy’s choice. Let each guest decorate their very own white lab coat, and decorate the house with bio-hazardous and radioactive signs. You can even find science kits that contain everything you need for an explosive party!
If you don’t have the space, time or energy to host at home, we love these indoor party ideas that you can find in any town or city:
- Head to the neighborhood ice rink or roller rink, lace up some skates, and take a few laps. It’s fun for all ages, and most venues offer party rooms and packages
- For younger birthdays, local children’s museums will offer fun, crafty and hands-on activities that will keep them busy and entertained for hours
- Bowling is great for all ages, especially alleys that offer bumper lanes and fun glow bowl nights where the evening is lit up with glow-in-the-dark balls and neon signs
- Head to the movies! With great, mom-approved flicks and awesome kids packs (or sneak in some of your own DIY treats!) send the kids to an entertainment center that’ll send their imaginations aglow
- The local library often has excellent entertainment on the weekends – from story time to reading circle – and for those inquisitive groups a storybook adventure might be right up their alley
- YMCA always offers affordable, indoor fun that can be built do meet your needs – with bouncy houses, pool time or active indoor play