This past Friday our oldest son turned 12 years old! I still can't believe he will be a teenager next year... His childhood is going by way too quickly... He is such a great son, and we are so proud of the wonderful young man he is becoming!
For this birthday he requested a party based on one of his favorite games: The Settlers of Catan! We decided to have a game night and invite a few friends to join us. He does have the extension games for Cities & Knights and Seafarers, but for the party (since some of our guests would be playing for the first time) we decided to just play the original version of the game with the 5-6 player extension. We set up one game at the dining room table and another (my brother brought his game for us to use too) at the coffee table. It was such a fun birthday party... "The best birthday!" as my kids tend to say every. single. year! ;)
.: Catan Decorations & Games :.
I had all sorts of plans that I had hoped to pull together for decorations, but my time was extra limited this past week between doctors appointments and babysitting my niece. I made his "cake" the night before, and then the morning of the birthday/party (while the boys were at Mass with their Dad and the birthday boy received a birthday blessing from Father!) I scrambled to pull a couple things together starting with a "Happy Birthday Banner!"
Normally I use my Cricut to make banners, but I needed something extra quick and easy, so I created the banner using reddish marble hexagons with the font Garamond MT (adding black lines to the edges and gradient color) in yellow. I printed it onto white card stock, cut them out, and punched a couple small holes in the corners for the ribbon. You can download my document here.
As much as I loved this idea to decorate plates (and even purchased clear disposable plates) I ran out of time and just went with red plates and napkins. I did pull out all of my wicker serving baskets and trays, made up labels for our resource card inspired appetizers, and also decorated with all of our Catan game boxes.
.: Catan Party Foods :.
Oceanside/Harbor Drinks: Pacific Cooler, Coastal Cooler, and Surfer Cooler Capri Suns
Forest/Lumber Terrain: Broccoli Forrest with Dip and Pretzel Logs
Hills/Bricks Terrain: Twizzler Cherry Bites and Cheddar Cheese Cubes
Pasture/Sheep Terrain: Popcorn/Sheep in a Sheepfold and a Sheep Butter Mold
Fields/Wheat Terrain: Wheat Stalk Rolls & Wheat Cookies
Longest Road: Rocky Road Ice Cream
.: Game Time :.
Captain choose his brother, his uncle (my youngest brother), and three more of his friends to play at his table.
The girls and the adults (my brother, sister-in-law, husband, and a couple friends) all played at the other game table.
And Snuggles kept us all entertained, as usual! ;)
For prizes, I had a basket full of mini candy bars to hand out, one for every Victory point that was earned, throughout the game...
... and the winner at each table also won a KING sized candy bar as well!
.: Birthday Cake :.
Instead of an actual cake this year, we decided to make individual cupcakes representing the various hexes that make up the Settlers of Catan board game. Here is the link to the post about our "Cupcakes of Catan."
.: Birthday Gifts :.
Captain was blessed with so many gifts from his friends and family, including such thoughtful and loving birthday cards (and an extra funny one from Uncle Brian, of course, who is always so much fun at Captain's birthday parties!), Nerf Super Soakers, Gift Cards, and Playmobil toys!
Bud was so cute to watch as he crawled around checking out all of the gifts and playing with the wrapping paper.
Along with illustrating some beautiful cards for their brother, I loved that a few of his siblings had been saving up their tickets all summer to purchase him gifts! Twinkle Toes redeemed 25 of her Summer Bingo Tickets to purchase him the new Lord of the Rings Gandalf Arrives Lego Set, Rascal redeemed his tickets to get his favorite big brother a new model airplane kit, and even Chiquita picked a stick of beef jerkey (Captain's favorite) from the prize box, instead of something for herself! :)
Hubby and I surprised Captain with the City Police Forest Station, a tennis racket, and one more expansion to his Settlers of Catan game series Traders and Barbarians.
.: Birthday Campout :.
We rarely have sleepovers, but we decided to let Captain ask his friends to stay and "campout" in the backyard!
It was nearly midnight when I finally sent them to
Happy 12th Birthday Captain!