Kids Day 2021:Under the Sea You Are Treasured Pool Party
I have fond memories of the excitement my best friend would get every year as Kids Day arrived. She never knew the date as it changed each year. But that made the excitement so much better.
Her mom, honestly one of God's gifts to the world, created Kid's Day. She thought we have a Mother's Day, a Father's Day, why not a day to celebrate the kids!
Kid's Day involved a day filled with fun, their favorite foods, presents and activities. What kid wouldn't love that? I remember it fondly and I wasn't even the recipient of it! So I vowed someday I'm going to do that for my children! As I made plans it quickly grew. My other friends liked the idea so much we put our heads together to create ONE BIG KID'S DAY!
Kid's Day 2021
Under the Sea "You Are Treasured"
Everything Under the Sea! This theme was planned months in advance. After the ups and downs of 2020 I wanted the kids to feel treasured. Stress has continually compounded on itself during the pandemic and often we just get by to the next stressor shuffling those we love into the mix. This theme was also to remind me of what is important!
Do you know the ironic thing? (Although is anything ironic with God?!?) The Vacation Bible School theme of this year was You Are Treasured! A local church let us borrow their decorations a week prior to our event! Who would have thought.
Party Planning Tip: Decorating does not have to eat up your entire budget! Get together with your mom friends and make things! We compiled all of the stuff we already had laying around and created most of our decor!
Under the Sea Creatures!
To Make Tip: Cut Cardboard Boxes into fun sea creatures. (Check Buy Nothing Groups people are always moving and giving them away FREE!) For the "water" we taped up blue table cloths from the Dollar Store.
Shop local thrift stores, buy nothing social media groups (most towns have them. You will be AMAZED at what people give away!) And of course the Dollar Store.
To Make Tip: Set up paper lanterns (I've used the same ones for numerous parties over the years. You can find them at the Dollar Store, party stores, Oriental Trading Co and so on!) Then tie strips of ribbon, yarn, tulle or all three. We hot glued a "tutu" to the base of some of them to make them more authentic. These were hung throughout my back deck so needed to be quite tall. Yours can be however long you like! Ribbon can get expensive so use coupons and check local craft clearance racks! I found the purple and blue sheer ribbon in Arkansas for 50 cents a huge roll a few years ago! Sure came in handy.
To Make: Unfold a plastic table cloth then cut strips 2-4" wide. We did a variety. I cut my strips as long as I could but you can alter to your preferences. Then take a strip and gently stretch the table cloth pulling just enough so you don't tear it. This gives you the rippled effect. We found if you place one hand higher then the other opposite it (so essentially diagonal) and tug it causes it to look more like seaweed or kelp! Then just tape up. We attached 3-5 strips to a 6" piece of clear tape and hung them in segments throughout the deck. My deck has vinyl throughout so the clear tape worked well but I'm sure you can use what you like. The dye from the cloths will start to stain your hands as you work but washes out.
We had every type of weather that day, but the decorations still held up well :)
To Make: Cut Croissants horizontally and fill with your favorite sandwich fixings. Hot glue craft eyes (Dollar Store) to toothpicks and add two completed eyes to each croissant :) We prewarned and helped each of the children to take their toothpicks out prior.
Coral Crunchies (Veggie Straws)
Star Fish Sandwiches
"Shark" fruit salad (it turned out fabulous!)
Seaweed Rolls (Various Pinwheels in Spinach Tortillas!)
Crab Cupcakes on a sandy beach
To Make: Bake cupcakes in any flavor you like. I baked orange cream cupcakes. Frost with frosting when they are cooled. I used a cream cheese frosting to make my "sand" look more realistic. I then dipped each cupcake into my "sand" (crushed Graham Crackers. - put inside a large zip lock bag and smash with a rolling pin) the crabs are made from orange wedge gummies the ones covered in sugar. I found a tub of them in the bulk food area of our local grocery store. I put them together with toothpicks. The eyes are candy eyes found in the baking aisle of our grocery store. I used a little frosting and added them to a cut orange wedge. For the arms I cut a peach ring in half. The peach rings were a little tricky to get the toothpicks through but we managed. It was fun making the eyes wonky. You can push your toothpicks in at different heights to achieve this effect. Then I added a few more toothpicks to the base of each crab and squished them into the "sand" of the cupcake.
It sounds complicated but absolutely went fast. I'm not a baker and had these, my "clam shells" and dipped marshmallows done with the help/ unnecessary assistance ;) of 3 kids under 6! So it's doable.
To Make: A few of us moms each bought various candies for our outdoor drive-in movie. Unfortunately, it started to rain right as this part of the evening was going to happen so our outdoor movie quickly became an indoor event!
For the candy station I had some of the taller canisters left from a previous party then bought the smaller glass ones from the dollar store. I wanted it to be an authentic "drive-in" for the kids so they could get their candy and popcorn prior to the show. We like to do "Treat Popcorn" in our family which is essentially a bunch of candy mixed into the popcorn.
We set Kid's Day up so the kids would have an opportunity to do different things throughout the day. We had a craft station where they decorated treasure chests. We later filled these with goodies and presented them to each child at the slideshow. An Under the Sea Scavenger Hunt.
A chalk mural where each child was able to draw out sea creatures contributing to one big ocean scene.
Beach Themed Minute to Win It Games
Including: The sponge race- teams race to fill up a bucket with q sponge transferring water from one bucket to the next.
Goldfish Cracker Race: Using a straw and paper plates kids had one minute to transfer as many Goldfish Crackers from one plate to another.
Ping Pong Goldfish Bowl toss: Land a ball in a bowl to win.
We also had a Graham Cracker cookie craft in which the children were able to make their own Under the Sea treats.
Kids that weren't doing one of the many activities were also playing on the trampoline, swing set or swimming in the pool.
We gathered all the kids after a few hours of fun and had them quickly decorate their drive in cars a.k.a cardboard boxes. A rainstorm was doing its best to ruin our fun. We got the kids settled on the porch and started dinner.
This type of party was extra rewarding as so many parents contributed to its success. Friends pitched in on every aspect so it ran smoother. The kids were beyond elated! As the kids were eating dinner and dessert we read stories of course ocean themed.
One of my VERY favorite moments of the evening came next. I believe fun should always incorporate a bit of humor so with the help of some absolutely wonderful moms we pulled off our version of a Helping Hands skit. In our skit "Grandma" was late to the party as she was stuck beyond a sea turtle! We all know how slow they are. She had wanted to bring the children Under the Sea Ice Cream sundaes but ran out of time! So she gave us the quick recipe.
For those of you unfamiliar with this skit. You typically have one person asking question or helping the other person along. The person being helped does not have use of their arms. There is a third person in this case it was me! I was hiding behind "Grandma" helping make the sundae. But... I could not see a thing! The kids went wild and loved every minute of it. Adults were equally cracking up. And Grandma was a fabulous sport :)
It had begun to rain at this point. The kids were eating their Treat Popcorn so we quickly finished and headed indoors for the slideshow.
The slideshow featured every child (all minus one who joined in at the last minute- but we included her even without her photos.) It had a photo and short bio of each kid. The bios talked about the special traits, likes and a memory of the child. As each photo came up that child's parent would talk about how special they were then we would give them their now full treasure chest. It was very meaningful and although embarrassing for some of the older children it touched many hearts. We ended the night with Jonah a VeggieTales movie.
Kid's Day is absolutely going to be an annual event so stay tuned for details on next years prep. The moms and I decided to cycle through themes every few years so we don't have anything go to waste.
If I can help you start this tradition in your own town please let me know by emailing or commenting below :) I don't think there is a wrong or right way to celebrate our kids.