September Seuss Spectacular

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“Today you are you! That is truer than true!

There is no one alive who is you-er than you!”

For all of our September birthdays we partied Dr. Seuss style!  This month’s theme in particular is near and dear to the Beverly’s Birthdays staff.  As Dr. Seuss once said, “You never know the true value of a moment until it becomes a memory.”  Through our celebrations, we hope to create moments that turn into lifelong happy memories for our children and families.

In providing birthday celebrations for homeless children and families in need, we interact with lots of people who are facing tough hardships.  Because of their circumstances, both parents and kids feel constant stress which results in negative health outcomes including higher risk for anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem.  We aim to relieve them of some of their worries while we take a moment to pause from daily life and just party! Seuss Invitation

Research indicates that healthy self-esteem exists when we believe that we are valued, competent, worthy, admired, and accepted. Through our programs, the children we serve gain confidence and feel worth because of the attention Beverly’s Birthdays party staff gives them.

One question we get asked a lot is why do birthdays matter?  As our Co-Director Josh likes to explain, think back to your childhood and tell us what your typical day looks like? We bet you can’t, but if we ask about your favorite birthday memory, most of us can come up with an answer.  As one of our kids reasoned, “the great thing about birthdays is that you get one just for being yourself.”  You don’t have to earn it in any way, everyone is special and deserves their own special day to feel like they matter because they do. Birthdays matter, smiles matter.

Party Activities

“Fox In Socks”

If you are looking for a fun craft to do with kids of all ages, then this Dr. Seuss craft is a great option!  You only need a few supplies, and by the end of the party your little foxes will be able to rock their own unique socks.

Creative opportunities are not only fun for kids, but important for their self-expression and mental development.  They are able to try out different ideas and implement their own unique visions.

Supplies:

  • Plain white socks
  • Fabric markers/Sharpies

Every child received a pair of plain white socks and markers.  We intentionally didn’t provide any prompt on how to decorate their blank canvas, and the results did not disappoint!  Every child had their own distinct, special design that showcased their amazing imaginations.  Some of the children turned their socks into puppets, while others asked for a larger size to make them into a present for their sibling or parent.

“Hop on Pop”

After we got the creative juices flowing and the brain grooving, we wanted to get the kids’ bodies up and moving.

Physical activity is beneficial for people of all ages, but particularly for young children because it helps promote healthy growth and development including gross and fine motor skills. (Look out for more information on this next month!)

Supplies:

  • 1/2″ (large) bubble, bubble wrap

We led the kids through a series of  variations on how to progress through the bubble wrap line! (hop on two feet, hop on one foot, you can only use your elbows, etc.)

“One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish”

For some of our younger demographic, we used everyone’s favorite fish snack to help the kids along their Pre-K track.

Matching and sorting activities through play help children to begin to learn math concepts, enhance and support cognitive development, and practice their fine motor skills.

Supplies:

Every child received a pack of rainbow goldfish and printable. We first had them sort the fish into their correctly colored goldfish bowl. We then had the kids complete the patterns. After we completed both sheets, we got to eat our fishies.

Other Dr. Seuss Activities

 

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More Fun

Shout-out to all of our awesome volunteers! This month we saw lots of creativity from our cupcake bakers. Here are a few of our favorites:

 

Other News

  • We had a HUGE opportunity to have a spotlight on NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt on Thursday, September 21st. Watch the clip here!
  • October’s theme is skeleton soiree. There are still volunteer opportunities available.
  • The Great Birthday Bake (a kid’s cookie baking competition) application is now live. If you or anyone you know is interested in entering, attending, or learning more check it out!

Next month we will be discussing our skeleton soirees, lovebug baby showers, and how you can use your birthday to give back! Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for more news and information about Beverly’s Birthdays!! Don’t forget #smilesmatter.

Birthday cheer,

Beverly’s Birthdays staff

Spring greetings from the Land of Cheer!

GREETINGS FROM THE BEVERLY’S BIRTHDAYS TEAM

It’s never a dull moment in the Land of Birthday Cheer and we are thrilled to introduce everyone to our newest staff member, KATE LIVINGSTON! Kate is joining Beverly’s Birthdays as Program/Agency Relations Manager. She is an absolute joy and we are lucky to have her!

Like all good teams, we made sure to welcome Kate to the office with some staff ice breakers. we first decided to analyze and specify what each of our office spirit animals are. Just so you are all caught up, the results were as follows:

MEGS YUNN – GENERAL DIRECTOR – MEERKAT

Megs, much like Timone from Disney’s Classic, “The Lion King”, is a highly energetic, feisty, determined and caring individual. Always on the move and doing good, she resembles the characteristics of a Meerkat. The Meerkat is also known to be a very protective animal. With two little ones and a third on the way, Megs’ beautiful and motherly demeanor greatly resembles that of the Meerkat. Megs insists that the Meerkat is an ugly animal, but we think they are pretty adorable. Look at that hug!

JOSH WHITESIDE – DIRECTOR OF DEVELOPMENT – OTTER

If the picture doesn’t say it, I don’t know what does. Otters are known to be full of positive energy. They are super popular, lovable and display highly developed social skills. Otters also mix easily with a wide range of animal personalities (working with a team of ladies, this trait is needed). Anyone that knows Josh knows that he is the definition of “MR. PERSONALITY”. The characteristics of an otter fit him perfectly, and we are glad to have him around!

MARTINA CARUSO – PROGRAM/VOLUNTEER MANAGER – PEACOACK

Many people think Martina is reserved upon first meeting her. It’s true, Martina has an introverted personality. A true performer at heart however, when put in her element, Martina opens her feathers to reveal her vivacious colors and skills. This comes out most when she is in her comfort zone and she LOVES to share it with the children at the parties she leads.

KATE LIVINGSTON – PROGRAM/AGENCY RELATIONS MANAGER – DOLPHIN

Kate has had no reservations jumping right into the daily routine of Program Manager! Dolphins are said to be at their best helping others to achieve their goals. They are unassuming and dedicated to their cause and derive great satisfaction, fostering greatness in others. Kate brings out happiness in others the moment she steps into the room. Her loving dolphin-personality is just what we needed on our team!

TRACY MONGELUZZO – FINANCE MANAGER – OWL

Since her first day at Beverly’s Birthdays, Tracy has been an ever-calming force in the office. The owl is the most tranquil of of the bird personalities. They are creatures of great integrity, wisdom and intelligence. Tracy is all of these things and more!  Owls are not without their assertive side however. They won’t hesitate to use their sassy personality. This comes out in Tracy at the best moments. We would be in trouble without our office owl!

It’s always fun to be a little silly in the office and we thoroughly believe we have a very well rounded team of animals!

The SECOND ice breaker we did as an office team was to take on the challenge of BEAN BAMBOOZLED, a game we have started playing at our March birthday parties. It has been a huge hit thus far with the teens attending these parties! If you haven’t tried it yet, we DARE you to.

To play, you spin a dial to land on a jelly bean. This jelly bean could be absolutely delicious or absolutely disgusting (example: if you spin and land on a white jelly bean, it will either taste like coconut OR baby wipes). You don’t know what the flavor will be until it is actually in you mouth! As a staff, we each had a chance to test both the good and bad flavors. It was a hilarious team building experience. We definitely recommend you bring this to your kid-based parties or take it out at a family for game night.

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Icebreakers aside, The Beverly’s Birthdays team is excited to jump into the Spring Birthday Season. We look forward to sharing our individual talents and passions with the agencies and families we serve and hope you are equally excited to get involved!

FEBRUARY FESTIVITIES

February was DINOSAUR month in the land of cheer. It was definitely a winning theme. The children, both boys and girls, had a ball with the activities planned. The most popular activity we lead was our Dino Safari Hunt. For this, we passed out plain safari hats that the children could decorate with dinosaur foam stickers. The kids got extremely creative and were anxious to put their hats to use:

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Once the hats were complete, we brought the children to the floor to read “How do Dinosaurs say Happy Birthday?” by Jane Yolen and Mark Teague. This got everyone settled and prepared to go on their Safari Scavenger Hunt. Prior to the party, we hid dinosaur fossil eggs throughout the room and gave the children 2 minutes to collect as many eggs as possible. They had a blast, sporting their individualized dino hats, and hunting for the fossil eggs. Even the older kids got excited as they tried to spot the vibrant eggs hidden throughout the room.

Other activities we lead at the February Dinosaur Parties included:

  • Dino Bingo
  • Dino Egg Races
  • Setting the Scene: Dino Stampers and coloring
  • Vibrant Dino scratch ornaments
  • Act like a Dino games and MORE
It’s always nice, as a Program Manager, to know we are having a memorable affect on the kids we serve. Martina was especially thrilled when she saw one of her Birthday Boys at the Lincoln Park Family Center in February. Knowing that his birthday was coming up, she had told him the month prior that the theme for his birthday was going to be “Dinosaurs”. His eyes instantly lit up. Much to her surprise, the young boy showed up to his February birthday party, decked out in an AWESOME dinosaur shirt!
It’s examples like this that makes us smile as a team. Knowing that this little boy remembered that he had a month to plan out his outfit for his party meant that he knew it was his special day to be in the spotlight. He definitely shined like a birthday star in our books!
LAND OF CHEER VOLUNTEERS
February was yet another busy month for our fantastic volunteers and donors. Beyond the efforts of our party bakers, staff and treat bags sponsors, we had several groups come out to do projects at our North Huntingdon office, as well as several local teams that ran successful donation drives for our organization. We have been so fortunate to work with groups that understand and can relate to our mission on a personal level. Thank you, again, to all those who have contributed to our cause. You are appreciated more than you probably know!
If you ever want to get involved further, or have an idea you would like to share with our organization, don’t hesitate to contact Martina at mcaruso@beverlysbirthdays.org
WHAT’S AHREAD?
We recently expanded our organization’s offices to the building next door. Since October, this building has gradually become our birthday bin factory, toy store and volunteer space. With the help of many volunteer groups and friends, we have gradually been able to transform this space into a manageable working area. That said, with a staff of only 5 that is constantly on the move, the area is still a constant work-in progress.

For this reason, we are THRILLED to share that we were selected as one of the final candidates to participate in the “IKEA Life Improvement Co-Worker Challenge” – a program that gives our organization the opportunity to win a MAKEOVER FROM IKEA! IKEA co-workers had the opportunity to nominate a charity to win a makeover for  a space that helps to improve the lives of others in their local community (THAT’S TOTALLY US!). Co-workers and customers then vote for their favorite charities and WE NEED YOUR HELP TO WIN.
FROM MARCH 27TH – APRIL 10TH, cast your vote DAILY for Beverly’s Birthdays. Winning this makeover will help create an environment that allows us to get materials out more efficiently! It will also help us create a nice space where YOU (our volunteers and supporters) can work to maximize your service to the fullest ability. All you have to do is follow the link below and VOTE ONCE A DAY:
We won’t be able to make it possible without your help, so please share this with your friends and be ready to vote every day! THANK YOU!
IN CLOSING
Let’s  keep the parties going, and the smiles flowing this Spring!
BIRTHDAY CHEER,
The Beverly’s Birthdays Team

The Key to Corporate Giving

There is a question we are asked daily when talking to people about what we do: How can I get involved? While there are countless ways to help our cause individually, one of our biggest contributors are corporations. It is possible for companies to either donate money or get employees involved.

Employee Involvement

One of the most popular ways we encourage employee involvement is in-kind donation drives. At Beverly’s, we always have a list of things we need to bring a smile to a child’s face. So what exactly do we need? Below is a list of items perfect for in-kind donation drives.

All items need to be new and unopened. We cannot accept any items that contain nuts or peanut butter due to allergies.

  • Target, Wal-Mart Gift Cards
  • Juice Boxes/Capri Suns
  • Individually Wrapped Snack/Movie Theatre Size Candy
  • Novelty Candy (Ex: Pez)
  • Teen & Young Girl Hair Accessories (Headbands, bows, ribbons)
  • Teen Beauty Accessories (Nail Polish, Lip Gloss, Body Spray, Body Lotion)
  • Stocking stuffer size toys appropriate for girls 4-9 (i.e.- Barbie, Dora, My Little Ponies, Hello Kitty, Lisa Frank, etc.)
  • Stocking stuffer size toys appropriate for boys 4-9 (i.e. – Superheroes, Cars, Dinosaurs, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
  • Stocking stuffer size toys appropriate for boys 10-14
  • Baseball Caps

Beverly’s Birthdays is also piloting in a new program, Classroom Cheer. We will be providing birthday treat bags to local school districts so that children have a birthday treat to give to their peers on their special day. These treat bags will include any of the following items:

  • Snack size animal crackers, individual bags of pre-popped popcorn, and/or pretzel
  • FullSizeRenderFruit Snacks
  • Juice Box
  • Small piece of candy
  • Birthday toy trinket

We recently partnered with PNC to put together over 600 treat bags for classroom cheer. Thank you PNC! This event is a great way to encourage employee participation and donation.

We also have a partnership with the Greater Pittsburgh Food bank, Good Samaritan care program of Washington County, and Feed my Sheep food cupboard located in Butler County to provide Birthday in a Bag.  We provide pre-assembled bags filled with all of the necessary items to host a small birthday celebration.  The bags are distributed throughout the region for low-income families in need. The items listed below are collected to fill our birthday bags:

  • Candles
  • Cake Mix
  • Icing
  • A set of birthday tableware (napkins, cups, tablecloth, plates, cutlery)

IMG_4938Alcoa held an employee event to help us with our Food Bank donations. Previous to the event, there were boxes stationed throughout the building to collect the items listed above. We then teamed up to put the bags together and deliver them to the Greater Pittsburgh Food Bank. Over 150 bags were put together for the cause! Thank you Alcoa!

Company Contributions

We all know that sometimes there just isn’t enough time in a day to hold an employee volunteer event, so why not donate money? We have several ways to contribute to Beverly’s parties. Corporate Cheer for a Year allows a company to “adopt” a shelter which will provide presents and parties for an entire year by donating $3000. 100 Birthday Smiles is a $1500 donation which can provide presents for 100 homeless children. A $500 donation is called Two Times the Birthday Fun and contributes to two Beverly’s Birthdays celebrations.  A Month of Birthday Cheer, a donation of $250, will allow a company to sponsor one birthday celebration.

These are just a few of the many ways your company can contribute to Beverly’s Birthdays. Do you like our mission?  Consider supporting Beverly’s Birthdays for your next corporate community outreach project. Please contact Michelle, our program and volunteer coordinator, at MMesser@beverlysbirthday.org for additional information.

 

Welcome to the Jungle!

safaricupcakes The jungle took over Beverly’s Birthdays in August with some awesome safari themed parties. The little explorers set off to hunt down animals with their homemade binoculars. Eat n’Park, our newest corporate sponsor, helped conquer the jungle at East End with our brave explorers!

The games and crafts for the safari party are easy to do and appropriate for all ages. The kids were able to use the crafts they created in the games they participated in at the end of the party.

 

Explorer Binoculars

binoculars

  • 2 toilet paper rolls (you can buy colored ones at Michael’s)
  • Hole puncher
  • String
  • Markers
  • Glitter glue
  • Stapler and/or tape

We suggest that the bincoulars are put together before the party begins. Simply staple or tape two toilet paper rolls together, punch a hole on the outside of each and tie some strings to help them hang around your neck! The kids can use whatever they want to decorate their own pair for their safari adventure.

Parrot Puppet

  • Red paper bags
  • Pre-cut paper feathers (varied construction paper)
  • Pre-cut beak pieces (orange construction paper)
  • Pre-cut feet pieces (orange construction paper)
  • Feathers
  • Google eyes
  • Markers
  • Rhinestones
  • Craft bond glue sticks

This craft involves some preparation! The feathers, beaks and feet all are easier when cut before the party. Children are able to pick out feathers, add color, and decorate their parrot with google eyes.

Elephant Hat

elephantmask

This craft was bought on Oriental Trading and everything is included in the pack. The kids loved being able to wear these around the party!

Monkey Masks

monkeymask

  • Small paper plates
  • Pre-cut brown circle (same size as plate, brown construction paper)
  • Pre-cut tan medium ovals for mouth (construction paper)
  • Pre-cut small tan cirlces for ears (construction paper)
  • White figure eight cut out for eyes (construction paper)
  • Google eyes
  • Craft bond glue sticks
  • Popsicle Stick
  • Black Marker

Starting the party off with everything pre-cut is a great idea for this craft. Even laying out all the peices for one mask at each chair setting will help. Also, we suggest gluing/taping the popsicle stick to the paper plate prior to the party. The picture to the right shows an example of what a final mask should look like (minus the elephant ears hidiing behind it!)

Turtle Shells

turtle shells

  • Green posterboard
  • Green Ribbon
  • Markers

The kids LOVED these turtle shells, especially the boys. This craft is easy to pre-assemble and fun to decoarate. As you can see from the picture, decorating them as Ninja Turtle shells were the popular thing to do.

Safari Hunt

This is where those homemade binoculars come in! This game is super easy to create.  When you think of making this game, envision a bingo board.  The cards for this game will look the same and you will want to print off each picture as you would do in creating the bingo game. Put several different types of animal that would find in the jungle on your card.  You will use the printed off pictures to hide around the party area.   Each child should have their own bingo card to cross off animals as they find them. Remind each child to put the animal back in its place so other children have the opportunity to find it as well. The first child that finds all the hidden animals, wins! This is a great game for younger children to pair up with an adult and hunt together. Let the hunt begin!

Pin the Cupcake on the… Alligator?

Just like the classic game of pin the tail on the donkey just instead you want to feed the hungry alligator! Those alligators have more than just one sweet tooth! This game can be found at Target.

alligator

Bird Seed Relay

  • 4 cups
  • 2 spoons
  • Bird seed

This game is fun and involves teamwork! Form two teams and fill two cups with bird seed. Set the remaining two cups a few feet away from the filled cups. Now, the goal is for teams to get all the bird seed from the filled cup to the other. It isn’t the first team done that wins, it is whichever team has the most bird seed in the cup at the end. Ready… set… go!

Thank you to all of our amazing volunteers for helping us out with these parties! We couldn’t do it with out you : )

vounteers

Precious, Precious Princesses

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                                             Princesses for a Purpose

 

Beverly’s Birthdays is very lucky to not only have the support of the community, but businesses in the community.  When businesses outreach to us, we are able to reach more children in need.  Y-O-U are what helps our mission statement become an action.  With that being said, we owe a HUGE THANK YOU to Bella Capelli Beauty Academy- Monroeville who is our fairy godmother in this Cinderella story. They made this event a possibility.  We truly appreciate the time and talent donated by your students.  They helped make every little girl feel special and like a princess for the day.
  bella capelli  Hair 2
Nails did
HAIR & NAILS 

 Party Details & Elements

Our princess event turned out princess perfect! This party would work great for your next little girl’s birthday party or fun girls’ slumber party! Be the hostess with the mostest and throw a party fit for a princess! The following includes the details and elements to recreate a princess party:

  • Princess theme cupcakes
  • Princess plates & napkins, pink tablecloths, purple juices
  • Crowns, Wands, & Party Favor Bags-ring pop, princess fruit snacks, candy necklaces, princess jewelry, royal word search
  • Create your own headband
  • Hand print Castle
  • Edible Princess Jewelry
  • Hair & nails
  • Princess Story Corner

Nothing says princess party like having princesses in attendance of the ball! We invited all guests to dress up like their favorite princess. It was priceless to the faces of our little princesses when they realized our special guests were Cinderella, Belle, Pocahontas, Ariel, & Merida! We were very lucky to have the help and support of FX Face Painting & Fairtytale Princess Parties, Pittsburgh. We encourage you to follow their Facebook Page and consider having them as entertainment at your next party. They were amazing with all our little princesses and made the event extra special! We are very EXCITED to announce we are their benefactor of choice! We are very gracious for this honor. A portion of every party, FX Face Painting & Fairytale Princess Parties, Pittsburgh, will go to Beverly’s Birthdays. How thoughtful and generous just like a princess from a fairytale!


                                     TABLE ARRANGEMENT

                             PRINCESS CAKE & CUPCAKES
craft workHandprints 2Handprint Craft
               headbands
Necklacesfruit loop necklace
                                             CRAFT TABLES

The color scheme used for this party was pretty pinks.  The cupcakes had a cute detail of ruffled butter cream frosting to resemble the different princesses dresses.  Corresponding princesses were placed on top of the cupcakes with included fondant details to match the princess character.  The cupcakes had a surprise filling of custard.  The aroma of sweet frosting permeated the room drawing a very eager crowd of princesses with a sweet tooth!  THANK YOU to Sue McLaughlin for providing the delicious sweet treats for this event!  Her work is always amazing.

Are you interested in getting involved with Beverly’s Birthdays?  Consider throwing your next child’s birthday in honor of Beverly’s Birthdays.  Do your kids have too many toys?! Ask guests to bring a gift for a homeless child in lieu of gifts for the birthday boy/girl.  For more information regarding making Beverly’s Birthdays the benefactor of your next birthday party contact our Program Coordinator at MMesser@Beverlysbirthdays.org.

We would love to hear your creative craft and game ideas for our next homeless shelter party.  We throw an average of 8 parties a month so we can always use cute ideas!

We’d like to finish by saying THANK YOU to all the princesses and their queens(moms) for sharing your Sunday with us.  We hope you had a royal day getting pampered.  You deserve it! Your support helps us make more at risk youth’s happy endings come true.

When we instill the value of service in our youth, we will create individuals who like the person in the mirror staring back at them.


the end

 

 

Out of their World

alien cupcakes May was an awesome party month for Beverly’s Birthdays filled with
0-U-T-E-R S-P-A-C-E  themed parties . We blasted off with our astronauts on a journey through the unknown.  Hold on to your seat as we share our Spacetacular crafts and activities so you can recreate an out of this world party for you child’s next birthday!  3-2-1……BLAST OFF!!!!

We started our parties this month with games outside first so our very excited high energy astronauts wouldn’t cause another Big Bang when we squeezed them all inside.  The games we created this month were appropriate for all age ranges, with the little ones being provided assistance by an adult. Explore the games below and the items needed.

Saturn’s Rings Bean Bag Toss
    -Sidewalk Chalksaturns ring toss
    -Bean Bags

Using the side-walk chalk, draw one large circle.  Using another color draw a smaller circle inside the large circle.  Lastly, choose another new color and draw a small circle within the last circle you drew.  The circles represent Saturn’s rings.  Your drawing should look similar to the picture on the right.  Have kids line up 10-15 feet behind Saturn.  Allow each child to make three tosses with the bean bags.  After the child has dropped all three bean bags total their score.  The inside circle is 3 points, middle circle 2 points, and the outer circle point is 1.  The child with the most points wins!

Hot Rock
     -Aluminum Foil
   – Styrofoam Ball (Purchased at a craft store)

Cover the Styrofoam ball with the aluminum foil so that the Styrofoam is no longer showing.  This game is appropriate for smaller space cadets.  Have the children sit in a circle and pass the rock around until you say METEOR.  The person who is holding the rock when you yell METEOR is out.  Make the circle smaller each time a person is out.  The last person sitting wins!  This is came is similar to hot potato.

rocket rokcet launchZ rpcket slam

Rocket Launch
     -Kit was purchased with rocket and launcher in box from Toy Section at Target.

The rocket is attached to the clear tube.  Kids step on the pump to launch rocket into the air.  We had children each take a turn launching the rocket.  The other astronauts try catching the rocket ship as it descends back to Earth.

Gravity Free Grub
    -Donuts
    -String

We created this game to simulate what it is like to eat in space where there is zero gravity.  First, we tied the donuts to the string.  Make sure to cut the string extra long so you can hang it.  The easiest cleanest place to do this activity is from a tree outside.  Make sure to cudonutt the strings depending on the child’s height.  It should reach their mouth.  Now for the fun part!  Have children put their hands behind their backs and eat the donut.  This is a great game for action shots so get those cameras ready! You will want to capture these cute cadets!

If you have a larger group of children, we encourage breaking them up into smaller groups.  Have the games as stations with an adult per each game.  When breaking up into groups, try to keep the same aged children together so the skill level is similar.

Defying the outside black hole, our space troopers made it back inside to the spacecraft…

Make your own flying saucer
    –Hot glue gun
    -Easter Eggsplanets
    -CDs
    -Glitter pens
-Alien Stickers

A little preparation goes into this craft.  Before the party, an adult should create UFOs.  Separate the Easter eggs into halves.  Using the glue gun, glue each side of the half egg to the top and bottom of the cd.  They should look like the picture to the right.  We provided the cadets with glitter glue and stickers to use their NASA skills to create their vision of what a UFO might look like.  This is a great craft for children of all ages!

Create a Planet
Coffee Filter
    -Washable Marker
    -Water Spritz bottle

Earth

Using the markers provided, the children can color on their coffee filters so create the designs they see when viewing the planets through a telescope.  After the coloring is complete, set the coffee filter on a paper plate.  Let your little astronaut spray it with water until the colors bleed into each other creating a marbled color effect similar to those seen on the planets!

 

Sand Art Space Mural
    -Kit purchased off Oriental Trading (includes sticky pictures andspace_sand_art individual colors of sand)

This craft takes more time than the others and is suitable for older children.  It can also get messy with the sand so it is advised that this activity be done at an outdoor table.

Astronaut Helmets
    -Paper Plates
    -Multiple colors of construction paper
    -Popsicle sticks

This activity involves some prep.  Prior to the party, cut out half of the inside of a paper plate.  Glue a popsicle stick on one side so it may be used as a handle to the mask.  We also pre-cut the little pieces using stencil punchers.  We put all the materials on the tables and let the children pick out the shapes and colors they liked for their astronaut helmet.  Glue sticks were used to place the pieces on the paper plates.  This craft is appropriate for all ages!  Now your space cadets have the helmet to be a real astronaut.  They can shoot for their dreams long after the party is over!

girlyastro astro

Build an Alien
Magic Model

alien craft

Each child was given a small piece of model magic in 5 various colors.  Let the children work with the clay to create an alien! Let them use their imaginations!  This is great for sensory play for the little ones.  Model sand can be placed in aluminum bins  where children can play with the modeling sand similar to a sand box.

We incorporated our theme throughout the party into our decor, party favors, and cupcakes. For this month’s party favor, we treated our astronauts to a sweet treat real NASA space cadets enjoy when in space…ASTRONAUT ICE CREAM!  The ice cream went perfect with these cupcakes solarstellar cupcakes!!  Even our armature bakers out their could shoot for the moon and make these! They were created by one of our talented bakers, Brittany Pruchnicki, using a sucker and a peach ring to resemble Saturn.  Brittany has a non-profit organization in the Pittsburgh area called Birthday Cakes 4 Free.  She provides birthdays cakes, free of charge, to financially or socially disadvantaged children on their special day.  Be sure to check out her Facebook page for more amazing cake ideas!

This month’s parties were a complete blast.  We wouldn’t have been able to put them on without the help of our amazing volunteers.  THANK YOU for all your help.  You are making this universe a better place.  We feel extremely lucky to be able to take these less fortunate children out of their worlds, even if it is only for 2 hours.  By showing an interest in their lives, we hope to teach them to reach for the stars.

 

 

shoot for the moon