Saturday, April 14, 2007

Redwall Birthday Adventures

No one should be surprised that 10yo (as of next Tuesday) K. wanted a book-themed party, right? My older kids began reading the Redwall series by Brian Jacques about the same age, and we have every single book (some 18 or 19 to date, with a new one coming out in October or November this year), and J. and E. have read them all. K. is working her way through them as fast as she can, having read five or six so far, in spite of my suggestions that she should read them more slowly because they won't last forever. She doesn't seem to be paying any attention.

We handed out Redwall-themed invitations to a group of K.'s friends, and prepared to transform our home into Redwall Abbey and its environs. These flags adorned our gate today, to indicate that passing into the gate meant entering the world of Redwall.

Last week, K., E., and I painted and decorated swords and shields so that we could transform our small and humble dining room into a banquet hall.

In addition to cake (pictured below), I found a couple of Redwall-themed recipes on the internest, and we served strawberry scones and Gonff's Cordial, which I understand are popular with the small creatures populating Redwall.

By way of entertainment, we dressed everyone up in costumes made of brown parcel paper, twine belt, cardboard daggers, and small money pouches to hold the glossy marbles and jewels they acquired throughout the day. J. designed and laid out a maze that covered our entire driveway and featured a large crawl-through box. The maze represented Mossflower forest (for those familiar with Redwall and its environs), and we painted trees on the outside of the box.

We had a rowdy, raucous treasure hunt which took the crew up and down the three floors of our home, and out into the yard for the finish. The treasure was very glittery and jewel-ish, perfect for little girls. We also played a guessing game and gave away two copies of Bitwa O Redwall, the Polish translation of the first book in the series. Only the first two books have been translated, by K. is eager for her friends to learn more about Redwall.

After the treasure hunt, we had refreshments in the banquet hall and the birthday creature (er, girl) opened her presents. (I may not recover from the large stuffed chicken with long dangly legs.) After a bit of free play, most of the girls camped out in the living room to play card games (go-fish and old-maid types of games) with this one-of-a-kind deck of Redwall cards. All the images were drawn by E. using a computer drawing program.

Surprisingly, one of the biggest hits of the day was the very large maze. The girls returned to it again and again, timing themselves and racing each other. It was fun for us to watch, as we could look straight down on the maze from our front balcony.

All in all, it was a very good day. I'm glad we did it. I'm glad it's over. Happy Birthday, K. I'm glad you're my daughter!

But there's not much of that cake left.


At 3:29 AM , Blogger Donna-Jean said...

Happy Birthday to K! Our younger two just went through each picture with me - they wondered what the maze looked like :-) and my daughter was practically drooling over what appeared to be malted milk balls on the cake?
What a wonderful time you had - and what a wonderful mom K has to put together this grand celebration!

At 5:25 PM , Blogger Fee said...

Hi there
I found you through the Geographical Awards. i too was a nominee.
My 11 year old son is ploughing his way through the Redwall series too, he loves them, and gets very upset if the next book is not available at the library! Before this series he read the Chronicles of Prydain, and adored those too!
Your party turned out great it seems! Well done!
Nice to meet you!

At 12:11 AM , Blogger TulipGirl said...

How wonderful! My boys love Redwall, too.

At 5:42 PM , Blogger Mama Squirrel said...

It looks like so much fun! Happy birthday!

At 5:44 PM , Blogger Birdie said...

Wow! I'm impressed!

At 9:22 PM , Blogger molly jean said...

Yummy cake, I'm sure! It sounds like it was a wonderful party! Reading Redwall always makes me want to go to the healthfood store and load up on nuts, seeds, and other healty and natural things to eat raw and bake with!

At 4:36 PM , Blogger Marjorie said...

What great ideas! I wanted to let you know that I included a link to your post in a post on woodland picnics - with credit to you of course!


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