In June, Riley turned 11! This was his year for a big "friend" birthday party. He is a HUGE Harry Potter fan. At my last count, he had read all seven books in the series at least four times each. He has been Harry Potter for Halloween twice and Draco Malfoy once. Even his room is decorated in a Harry Potter theme, so it was no surprise that he wanted to have a Harry Potter themed birthday party. Thanks to my sister-in-law, Alicia, who recently threw a Harry Potter party for my nephew and mailed me all of her leftover stuff and thanks to the internet, we were able to put together a pretty fun party!
Party Invitation--inside. Using a mixture of baking soda and water, we wrote an invisible ink code word in the blank space on the bottom of the invitation. When heated, the solution turns brown, revealing the code word.
Decorations--I wish I could take credit for these, but they all came from my super sister-in-law
Hogwarts House Banner and Dining room (the ceiling has been "enchanted" to look like the night sky)
When the kids arrived, we used a sorting hat to sort them into different houses. Each kid got a robe for his/her house (robes were made from XL Men's black t-shirts cut up the middle and ironed on house crest).
Each "student" received a wand (pencil spray-painted gold) and a Lesson's book, which they used for each of their "classes".
They started in "Charms" class, where each house (team) was given a list of spells which they had to match to their function.
Next they went to "Care of Magical Creatures" class where everyone made their own origami owl. (I was so busy running the party that I didn't get pictures of these, but they were cute!)
Page from the Lessons Book for Care of Magical Creatures
The third class was "Divination". I the kids several different Jelly Bellys and they had to taste them and use their powers of divination to determine what flavor they were.
The fourth class, which was definitely everyone's favorite, was Potions! I found a great "potion" online that changed colors and bubbled. The kids thought it was great!
Potion Instructions from the Lessons Book
Basilisk Venom: red cabbage juice (made by chopping up red cabbage, putting it in a bowl and pouring boiling water over to cover. Leave for 20 min--water will be purple = red cabbage juice)
Mandrake Root: long pretzel stick
Boomslang: Powder laundry detergent (changes the potion's color)
Eyeballs From a Blind Cat: Garbanzo beans (does nothing, just sounds gross)
Truth Serum: Vinegar (changes the potion's color again)
Bat Dung: black beans (just for fun)
Horn of Bicorn: Baking soda (makes the potion bubble up)
Hippogriff Gizzards: saurkraut (just for fun)
Gillyweed: Italian seasoning (just for fun)
Mixing up the potions
Riley's bubbles over
We ran out of time for the fifth class, which was going to be "Transfiguration" (basically charades with the Harry Potter characters)
We ended the party with a feast in the dining hall and cake.
The "feast"--nothing too magical, just pizza, but I did put a drop of food coloring in the bottom of each of the cups, then covered with ice, so that when the Sprite was poured in, everyone's drink turned a different color
Riley with his friends and Hogwarts cake
The goodie bags were also courtesy of Alicia (my sister-in-law). She had some leftovers from her party. They were so great! Inside the goodie bags, we put Bertie Botts Every Flavor Beans, Butterbeer and a golden snitch.
I love planning fun kids birthday parties, but they sure are a lot of work!!! Riley loved everything, though, so it made it all worth it!
On Riley's actual birthday, we celebrated with a small family party
Riley with his presents (Back: Kaydence, Kassidy, Ryder and Kyndall, Front: Kaiya, Riley and Rustin)
I loved the creative duct tape wrapping on this present from Grandma and Grandpa Wilkinson---almost too cute to open!
The kids crowd around Riley while he opens his presents. Riley is a GREAT present opener---he gets super excited about everything and always jumps up to give the present giver a hug and a Thank You.
I cant' believe that I am old enough to have an 11-year old! Riley starts middle school this year and I am just not ready for the drama that usually comes with that. I am sure he will do great--he is such a happy, positive, upbeat kid. His mind is always thinking up some new invention. He has a quick smile and a giggly laugh that is contagious. He has really matured a lot this past year and become much more responsible. I am lucky to be his mom!