Wish granted! Armed with some balloons, a tablecloth, drinks and chips, we made our way to the Parc de les Aigues which is near our apartment. However, when we got to the park, I immediately thought my biggest fear would be realized which was that no picnic tables would be available. There was a big party going on and all I could mutter under my breath was "shit, shit, shit!"... thankfully the party wasn't as big as I thought and there were still a few tables left...whew!! That's the risk you take having a party in the park - to my knowledge there is no reservation system to guarantee you a table (and if there is, I most definitely didn't do it).
This is the party that I saw happening from a far - lots of people, lots of decoration...
This was our sad little table, which by the way, Aidan could have cared less about...Liam was just happy there was soda and juice...
So anyways, the night before Aidan had two of his closest friends sleep over. They didn't go to sleep until midnight so I was rather surprised at their excited and energized moods when we got to the park. Of course that was after several meltdowns before we left the house because they were so obviously exhausted! But the bonus was instant party upon our arrival since he already had two friends plus Liam with him.
Aidan and some of his friends cooling down with some drinks...it was a hot day!
The kids enjoyed pizza for lunch and then a quick game of dodgeball (where Josh ended up falling into the shrubs - ooops!) before heading off on their scooters again!
Enjoying some pizza in the shade
Impromteu game of dodgeball
I enlarged this picture of Josh in the shrubs for everyone's viewing pleasure ;)
I realized I had no where to hang balloons and my "brilliant" idea of putting the balloons on sticks and taping them to the tablecloth was a complete and utter failure. However, the kids enjoyed using them as swords and hey who am I to get in the way of 8 year olds having sword fights with balloons? They used every single balloon and were pretty happy for it. Given I planned no party games (I'm super slacker mom these days as I didn't plan them for Liam's either), they did a pretty good job of self entertaining.
But what was even better, was that a few of the kids decided to take the sticks and make them into drumsticks with the balloons. Before you know it we had a whole group of kidding "drumming" on their balloons. Of course, the balloons didn't last that long but it was cute to watch while they lasted!
It startedoff with just two...
Liam lost his sticks and just decided to play the bongo ;)
One of the bonuses of living in Europe is that there is a general feeling of safety, especially when in numbers. Now, while I had no intention of having Liam's 5th birthday party in a park for fear of losing a 5 year old (most parents drop off the kids rather than staying), for Aidan's party, I pretty much didn't see him or his friends for 30 minutes at a time. They were all scooting around the park, having an absolutely great time. And I didn't worry at all that anyone was missing. That doesn't mean I didn't check here and there to see where everyone was, but it wasn't a panicked checking, just a hey, want to make sure everything is ok.
No, he's not wearing a helmet, but he's supposed to be... sneaky!
While playing the kids came across a domestic pig...
They followed the poor owner everywhere!!
So on the way to the park, Josh dropped the cupcakes (there was a cover so it wasn't dropped in the street). You've never seen such a livid look as the one I gave to him, especially given I had carted cupcakes up to school twice in the last week, an hour trek each time, and no harm came to a single cupcake. Josh hadn't even made it out the front door. However, in his defense, the sun melted the frosting anyways and they didn't look so appetizing... I think I "sold" one or two but the rest got dumped.
Worst looking cupcakes anywhere...
The kids seemed to really enjoy (which terrified me of course, since the majority of them did not have helmets, the norm here) going all the way up to the top of this hill and then flying down at full speed on their scooters. I still don't think my heart has recovered...
I think overall Aidan had a great party. He was smiling thru the whole thing and everyone got along great. This was a big turnaround from his actual birthday when he had that fight. So I was happy he got what he wanted - his scooter party in the park with all his friends! On another note, we put the kids to bed a just after 7 and they were out like lights!!