Monday, January 19, 2009

Calling all Superheroes

This should probably be, like, three separate posts. But I'm tired and it's late so it's just going to be one gigantically enormous entry.

Dash has been obsessed, and I mean obsessed, with superheroes for a couple of months, now. I have always been opposed to "licensed" birthday party themes, but I really couldn't figure out a way around this one. So I just went with it. Maybe next year we'll do a twigs and sky theme, just to even it all out.

The invitation. I found a picture of some cool superhero Pez & doctored it in Photoshop to make it look like a comic book. Then I added Dash's mug & voila. The invitation said, "superhero costumes encouraged but not required" and nearly every kid stepped it up & arrived in character.

Favor bags. Did you know that Pez lost the Marvel license? We ended up with "Klicks." I kinda can't believe Pez hasn't sued them as they're almost identical, but I guess that's not really my problem.

My only contribution to the favor bags. I found really cool vintage images of superheroes online & printed them onto label paper, then I used them to tart upsome plain notebooks.

The Friday before his birthday, we sent cupcakes to school. I used the same images from the notebooks to create cupcake picks.

Because I'm not a particularly nice person, I stuck the images onto lollipops. When I apologized to Dash's teacher for the extra sugar, she just laughed & informed me that the candy would be going home with the kids that night. Sorry, other parents!

We had an impossible time finding a cake design. Everything was either about just one superhero, or would require me to actually possess some cake-decorating skill (which I do not). So we designed the above image in Photoshop & had a comapny print an edible cake picture. We took it to the bakery & they placed it & designed around it. It was pretty cute in the end.

Apparently, three-year-olds require some entertainment in addition to cake, so we came up with a few things to occupy them. First, I bought some plain plastic "superhero" masks & glittery stars, letters & jewels to decorate them.

Then, I devised a scavenger hunt. I bought a bunch of trinkets & hid them all over the yard. Each kid got an illustrated list of things to find and was set off.

At first I hid everything in plain sight, but then Josh explained to me that although they are three, all the kids are perfectly able to see, so maybe I should consider actually hiding the stuff rather than just tossing it onto the lawn.

Worked out much better.

Also, ALSO! I came up with a game called "Heroes vs. Villains." I found pictures of bad guys online & printed them onto card stock. Then I glued the pictures into some boxes and tacked them onto a board.

Each villain had a corresponding hero, whose image I printed onto iron-on paper & ironed onto some cotton fabric. I then sewed beanbags (stuffed with barley because we're all natural, yo.) The idea was to throw the hero beanbag at his villain (ex. Batman is hucked at Joker, Superman at Lex Luthor.) Zero kids were interested until I started to bribe them with prizes of sticker books and Wonder Woman tin boxes. Eventually they came around to the idea that they were being encouraged to throw crap as hard as they could.

Of course I could have skipped everything and it would still have been the awesomest party ever because we had this:

So, you know, in the future, don't aggravte youself. Just spend the $100 and relax. They'll wear themselves out right-quick and have nothing but the fondest memories of your party. Oh, and the kids will enjoy it, too.

Pre-party set-up:

Yeah, that's right, Cheetos. At least they're the baked ones.

I tried to make shapes & letters our of the cookies, but my test batch puffed and swelled and was unrecognizable so I made circles. Still tasted good.

Eventually there would be mac & cheese & turkey wraps on these trays.






amy turn sharp of doobleh-vay said...

perfect! love it! so good!

vincent said...

What a wonderful party, what a great mom and what a lucky boy... That looks like a lot of fun!!! WOW!!! And your house is so pretty- I love your taste...

googler said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
bigdreamer8619 said...

Thanks for the great ideas! How did you get the picture on the gift bags?

bigdreamer8619 said...

Thanks for the great ideas! How did you get the picture on the gift bags?

Liz said...

Hi! I printed the image onto label paper & just cut them out & stuck them on. I used the larger Avery mailing label size (

Anonymous said...

Just found you via Green Jello and MAN am I glad I did. I love a good kids party and especially one for a little boy. I too fought the fight but lost and am facing a Star Wars party this summer for my 7year old and you have given me great ideas!!!

Thank you so much! :)

leah pagala said...


stumbled upon your post whhile looking for super-hero party ideas. your party looked amazing and your son is so lucky to have such a thoughtful mom like you!

i've been looking for super-hero images and i haven't found all of them. was wondering if you could point me in the right direction for the vintage superhero pictures? thanks so much!!


Laurie said...

i love this party! Im helping my sister plan a Super Hero party for her son. Can you please share where you found the vintage superheros?

Your Family's Friend said...

I found you through Green Jello! I am throwing my son a superhero party as well. He is turning 5. Do you have the vintage superhero pics still. Could I impose on you and ask if you can email them? My email is

Unknown said...

Can you share the link where you found the vintage superhero prints? My kiddo is begging for some superhero crafts. Thanks.

Carina miller said...

amazing party! what great ideas. would also love the vintage superhero images if you are sharing...