So, in the spirit of fun and perhaps too much of New Year's "spirit", we invited 15 small children over (ranging in age from 2 to 10) for an unplugged New Year's Imaginarium Party...
You know, using your imagination to play. Like dressing up. Or fighting imaginary dragons, or Sith Lords.
It was replete with dress up centre - craft table - decorate your own cupcake (although according to Owen the cupcake on the sign for it more closely resembled the Taj Mahal, not a cupcake. And here I thought he was being nice about my dangly silver and gold ornaments all over the living room....uh, no) board games for all ages - face painting - and Naomi's own creation - "Naomi's Play Centre" with groovy girls, magnets, cars, etc. cordoned off in the living room. NOT for big kids.
We even had pin the hat on the wizard....really. i was into it. hand drawn.
So, by now, I am sure my sage friends are shaking their heads...Kate, Kate, Kate. You turned off the wii? you banned the DS-es? Are you insane? Well, yes, apparently. To be kind, kids usually come to a party that has, well, a purpose. A birthday, Christmas, Hannukah. Anything. This had an unidentified, probably never been to one like this before, my parents dropped and ran kind of feel to it. So bless their little hearts when they shared wary glances at each other - is she for real???
I saw their internal dialogue going something like this....
Uh, you want me to put on a COSTUME!?? and make a play? or pah, play a BOARD Game?? it was writ large:
Lady, give me some direction here, for cryin out loud. Ok, face painting, I can line up for that....
Wow, they are giving me quarters to put into the gumball machine...heaven. How many can I shove in at once? uh oh. broke it.
Why is that lady screaming at me to not throw stuff in the basement? Yeesh lady, calm down.
Who plays moustrap anymore???
Cupcake station is an excellent distraction while the under 6ers actually hide, when we said "hey let's play hide and seek..."
I have to be honest, as Hitch says, in well, Hitch - I saw it going differently in my mind.
But if I am also being 100% truthful....the wee ones who had their faces painted roared around like a pack of imaginary wild animals led by none other than Wild Nate the Great himself. And somehow, the older ones of both genders gelled into the team vs the little people. Too bad they are not as loud or agile.
So my basement saw some stuffy throwing action - and seriously, almost every kid cheated at the Pin the Hat game. But -all left sweaty and rosy cheeked, fist tight around a randomly selected grab bag. Unless you had that final 10 seconds to root through for a better one...And there were was no blood or tears.
So - an excellent start to 2010.