My biggest boy is 7. How on earth that happened, I simply don't know. But it did and to celebrate the awesome kid he is, we threw his very first ever birthday party. With the ulterior motive of getting to know as many people at his new school as possible, we invited his entire class, plus a handful of select friends, to share a day in the woods. 23 kids arrived on Saturday afternoon ready to celebrate the awesomeness of Ellis.
With 2 other birthdays and final book edits all happening in the 7 days before the party, I simply wanted something with as little stress as possible that would not break the bank. We bought a truckload of sausages from Costco, decorated one of the outbuildings with random festive bits from the house and hired an awesome local business, intrepid:scotland, to run an outdoorsy birthday party in the woods.
intrepid:scotland is run and staffed by rangers who work in the National Park. Clare and Callum were just great with the kids and lead fun activities we just never would have had the skills or confidence to manage. The kids got to roast marshmallows over a campfire, make journey sticks and charcoal pencils, run all over fields and forests and generally explore this amazing area we live in. If you are local, I highly recommend them! It also meant that Kevin and I could actually hang out and talk to people, meet Ellis' new friends and not have 23 seven year olds destroy the house. Plus, we had fabulous friends make cake and handle sausage cooking for the hard working kids and adults. It was *almost* relaxing!
For party bags, we bought some sweet little less-than-a-pound pots from ikea and split up some packs of wildflower seeds for a mini nature reserve. I used my normal post office (4 to an A4 sheet) sticky labels and designed an instruction note to put on 9x15cm envelopes for the seeds.
Easy, stress free and fun. And awesome. Just like him.
* the party invite is just a photo I took (inspired by Kat who was inspired by Catherine) with directions to where we live added in photoshop on the bit where the moleskin is. We just printed out colour copies and sent them to school. Easy, peasy.
** the chickens freak out every time someone comes in and out of the door, running up to the gate to see if we have anything for them. Ellis is their favourite because he brings them left over porridge.