Yo Ho Ho and a Happy Birthday

Will turned 3. We had a party. By request, it was a pirate party, yar.

I did my creative-Mom thing by: sending out pirate-themed invitations, putting up a “get your pirate on” station on the porch for party-goers to pick up their gear (eyepatch, do-rag and stickers) and choosing their pirate-name. I was Pirate Holly Barbarella. Others chose from things like Barnacle Breath —, — the Rope Slasher, Reeking Flora —, and Jelly Legs —. Some names were simply obvious:
A few nights before, I stayed up WAY late cutting out foam and felt to make this game:
The Birthday Cap’ain was in to it. He stood, flag in hand, ready to tell passers-by to “shiver (his) timbers” or “walk the plank.”
Kate, on the other hand, was just thrilled with all the excitement and flew around the house all afternoon.

I made the Ahoy Matey banner, used the Happy Birthday banner from last year, and got the pirate pendants and flags used on ebay. We bought the disposable helium tanks because apparently there is a helium shortage in the area and stores are not able to rent balloons or sell inflatables.
We had lots of help from my Mom and Dad, who picked up the cake and food (even buying extra “just in case!”) and put time and effort into helping us set up.
In addition to making the pirate game (a hit, at least with the parents, who jokingly suggested I plan pirate parties professionally) I burnt my fingers off making jewel stickers for the kids to put on paper towel rolls (painted black by Paul) to make pirate telescopes. I also had cool paper ships from Ruby’s Diner with sticker sheets (another ebay find). As I probably should have guessed, the kids loved the pinball machines, Will’s legos and bristle blocks, and random Baby Kate equipment. I did my best to not be a complete control freak… the kids did do the crafts I’d prepared. Even though Will had done both crafts at least 12 times in the past week, he even got involved. Aya made my day by making a totally decked-out ‘scope.
I may have stayed up into the night making cupcakes for Will’s class, but the birthday cake came from a bakery. O’Delice, a bakery a short walk down Magazine, supplied the beautifully-appointed sugary treat… and oh my goodness. One could find religion in something that good.The big finale was a treasure hunt. While we were going to have a step-by-step find the clue arrangement, we ran out of time in our preparation and instead did the direct approach to treasure hunting: “Do you all see a treasure chest??” It took about 4 seconds for them to point out the one and only chest clearly visible in the room. We opened it up… and helium balloons popped up with the kids’ goody bags, coloring books, and bubbles inside.Will was showered with wonderful gifts from party-goers, family, friends, and neighbors. Too much to mention… although much in pirate theme… legos (Granna and PapPap), t-shirt (Gwen, Mario, and Clare), book (Emily and Skip), puppets (Amy, Kevin, and Brayden), and more… musical instruments, tub toys (pirates), Melissa & Doug birthday cake (Nana), tool set (Grandpa George), and puzzles (Aunt Julie).

He had a GREAT birthday thanks to all the caring and thoughtful people in his (and our lives!)