A Tale of Three Kids’ Birthday Parties

IMG_7047My birthday boys (not the guy in the middle!)

April is a month of birthdays for our family – my own two kids were born in April, 2 years and 8 days apart – and many of their friends celebrate birthdays in April, too. I still make my boys celebrate their birthday at the same time, whether we have a big birthday party or take them on a fun trip. I’m not sure how long I can get away with that, but I’ll keep trying.

Treasure Hunt

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This year, my kids wanted a scavenger hunt for their birthday. I took that idea and changed it up a little devising a clever but easily solved treasure hunt for them and a few of their friends. It was hardly Pinterest-worthy, but I did craft a pretty good hunt. I limited the kids to just a few friends each, and sent them off in two teams in opposite directions around the block. Here are some of the weird and random locations:

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The goal was to find the treasure, and there were 10 clues that led them to it. To find the next clue, they had to solve a puzzle or a riddle which would tell them the next location. I planned this thing for two full days. It took them 30 minutes to complete. During the rest of their visit, they had an epic squirt gun fight and some birthday cake.  Done.

Socks Mandatory

IMG_7087My boys stealing some poor kid’s thunder

The next day, we attended back-to-back parties in Simi Valley. The first was at Imagymnation, a warehouse-turned-gymnastics center for kids. The helpful young party workers led the kids through games and jumping around. Not even an hour into it, both of my boys were sweaty and happy. The parents sat on the sidelines, chatting or checking their smartphones. The party ended with pizza and cupcakes.

The second party was on the other side of Simi Valley at Scooter’s Jungle, a relatively new indoor playground that has giant inflated slides, bouncers, a climbing structure, and mini scooters. Again, the kids were let loose to climb, jump, and slide, and they did it over and over again. At one point the party leader had the kids grab their parents to go down the giant slide with them, but I was spared, because my kids ignored me. If I hadn’t tweaked my back I would have made more of an effort to join in, because it looked like fun!

After the frolicking, we all went into a cafeteria-style room for munchies, vegetables, and pizza (again) and birthday cake. The whole thing lasted about 3 hours. I thought the children would fall asleep on the ride home, but it was me who was bushed! I noted, however, that both locations, aside from being great for kids’ birthday parties, have free play hours during the week, which will be perfect on hot summer days when I have to get the kids out of the house to burn up energy!

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