We're back to the birthday parties. As I have mentioned once or twice (or fifty
times) my five year old's birthday party was a Dunkin Donuts Carnival. And as
part of the carnival, he really wanted to have some sort of game that involved
darts - sounding, to me, very dangerous. Josh didn't think so, he thought it was
an awesome idea. And then I came across this Balloon Pinata and it
helped me realize how all my boys can have their dart game and I can keep my
sanity - and the darts - under control.
We started with a huge piece of mdf. I want to explain what mdf is, but I am not
sure what it is exactly. It looks like wood, it acts like wood but it's not wood*. Also, we already had it in the basement so technically, it was free which is what we were going for. Balloons were to be blown up, filled with candy and attached to the board.
There were about 15 kids coming so Josh made a good 25 balloons, not so much
because he thought they'd pop before they were attached to the board, but more
because he likes candy.
Days before the party, my kids had painted the "wood" and we let it dry, leaning
it against the wall in the basement because the party was only a few days away
and what could happen, right? A lot. Hurricane Irene happened. And the basement
flooded. And the party was postponed - twice. And we were so busy doing
hurricane cleanup we weren't paying attention to the huge board in the basement.
And the whole bottom of the board got moldy. Of course, no one realized that until
Josh went down there during the party to attach the balloons to the
board and had to stop and saw eight inches off the bottom. It still worked out
well but it wasn't as huge as I thought it would be.
The goal was to fill balloons with candy and have the kids throw the darts
and pop the balloons - each kid getting the candy that exploded from his
balloon, thereby avoiding the need for a first aid kit after all the kids bump
heads, trying to grab the candy that falls from a regular pinata. But the whole
dart thing didn't really sit well with me, and in the end, I forgot to get darts
anyway. No really, I did forget. So instead of darts, Josh mc'ed the game by
using one clean, new nail. No tetanus shots needed. The contestant was given the
nail as he came up and it was promptly taken away from him as soon as the
balloon was popped.
It all worked out very well and the kids had a blast. But I think Josh had
the biggest blast of all. You see, in the original instructions for the balloon
pinata, the author did not indicate how to fill the balloons with candy, she
only alluded to her husband being an engineer and having great fun with a rented
wet-vac. My husband, who, in his heart of hearts, will always be the MIT trained
engineer that he is, heard this and right away, it was a competition. With a guy
he doesn't know. And most likely will never meet. But the gauntlet had been
thrown down. Or the PVC pipe, as the case may be. And in this case, it
was PVC pipe. Because that's what Josh came home from Home Depot with.
Some PVC pipes, some black thing he screwed on top of the PVC pipe - and a
borrowed electrical air pump (which reminds me, we must return that...) I didn't
stick around for all of it because it was taking a really long time with all the
candy eating breaks (one for Josh, one for the balloon) but he did it. He got
the candy - we used fizzers because they were long and thin and fit through the
PVC pipe without getting stuck - into the balloons. The laffy taffys, not so much. And the lollipops, forget it, I don't know what I was thinking. They have sticks, of
course they would pop the balloons.
Anyway, I can't give specifics on the hows of the balloon making, but if
you would like the instructions, just leave a comment and Josh'll get back to
* So I guess that old saying, "If it walks like a duck and talks like a
duck, then it's a duck" ain't all that true...
Are you a Mom?
Of course you are,
your shirt is dirty :)